Eufaula lost heavy off the core of its team that had produced two state finalists and barely missed a third trip to state a year ago, but a core of kids who have played behind that group will get their chance to sneak up on someone under new coach Victor Paden. ... Sequoyah has a pair of Northeastern State signees in Karter Woodruff and Ryan Helsley that will help the Indians to try and get over the regional hump that’s been consistently in its way in recent years. ... Warner has a core of returning starters in Tim Smithson (.506) and Cody Doffman (.369) in its infield from a team that won 25 games a year ago.
Others to watch:
Among the other top area players returning are Colton Shearwood, SS, Stigler, Sr. (.441 BA); Austin Tarver, SS, Keys, Jr.; Chance Douthit, 1B, Gore, Sr. (.384 BA) and Kolby Clay, SS, Gore, Sr. (.459 BA).
Though some area teams don’t begin until next week, at least four openers are set for Friday — Fort Gibson at Hilldale, Sapulpa at Muskogee, Braggs at Warner and Vinita at Wagoner. All but Braggs-Warner are 4:30 starts; that one at 4.