CLOVER — While Clover American Legion head baseball coach Darrell VanDyke said he has been pleased with the steady progress of a young Post 38 team this season, he was somewhat perplexed in describing last week’s 18-15 loss to Concord.
Post 38 led 15-7 going into the ninth inning, when Concord came roaring back.
“It was a mixture of everything,” VanDyke said. “You name it and it went right for them and wrong for us in the final inning.”
VanDyke knows progress has been made with a lineup that has been through the grind and some less experienced players with breakthrough potential.
The Post 38 players had their moments against Concord, despite the last-inning breakdown.
Concord had no answer for Clover’s Landon Harkey.
Harkey terrorized Concord pitchers with three hits, including a three-run homer. He also had two singles and four RBIs.
The hits otherwise were evenly distributed throughout the lineup for Post 38.
VanDyke said he looks for Post 38 to get back into the win column in region competition.
“The kids are playing hard, but it’s more fun when you win,” said VanDyke, who also is head coach of the Clover High School baseball team.
VanDyke has been pleased with the response to American Legion baseball this season, noting that 40-plus players turned out.
“We have three teams playing baseball in June, and that’s good,” he said. “The kids will benefit from the American Legion experience, senior and junior participants.
“It will help them when they return to school ball.”
The Post 38 senior team will be on the road this week, traveling to Lancaster on Thursday and making the trek across the border to face Concord on Saturday. The Clover legion team will return home Tuesday to play Rock Hill Post 34 at 7 p.m. at the Clover High School baseball field.