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Honors team? Not even close

Let's see, Amber Morrison bats nearly .600, drives in 40 runs and is 6-2 on the mound. She leads South Harrison to a share of the Big 10 Conference championship and the Class AA regional semifinals. She's already signed to play college softball with Alderson-Broaddus.

Beth Guzzi is the most dominating pitcher in our area. She wins 18 games and leads Bridgeport to a share of the Big 10 title and a third-place finish in the Class AAA state tournament.

But neither is worthy of selection to the first team of their division's all-state teams.

That's according to the state's softball coaches who vote on the team.

How is this possible?

Apparently, coaches in other parts of the state don't have much respect for Harrison County teams.

That's the only explanation I could think of to justify the oversight.

And it's one that both South Harrison coach Brad Jett and Bridgeport coach Lois Pratt believe to be the case.

"It's politics," Jett said. "Basically the southern coaches won't vote for anybody from the north and it's just poorly organized.

"I know last year that only four out of the seven coaches in the Big 10 even got all-state ballots. It's been a problem."

"They don't respect the area," Pratt said. "They used to say that we needed to get our teams out and play more teams from around the state.

"We did that this year and even made the state tournament. It didn't seem to help."

Jett was further outraged when Morrison was snubbed for the North-South Classic.

"I just don't understand it," Jett said. "She's a great player, worked hard and deserves the recognition. It's not right."

It won't help Morrison. But for Guzzi, who's just a junior, and for future stars like Robert C. Byrd's Shawna Elder and Bridgeport's Erica Rome and Angie Handschumacher, let's hope softball coaches learn a little geography before next season and realize all-state means just that Ñ all state.

It's good to see the City of Clarksburg and several other establishments recognize the accomplishments of Liberty's state champion baseball team.

Clarksburg City Council paid tribute to the team Thursday with a dinner at Philip's Restaurant and later recognized the Mountaineers at their council meeting. On Friday, P.J. Kelly's treated the team to lunch.

For the players, veteran coach Pete Iquinto and his staff, it's a tribute well deserved for the many hours of preparation that paid off in the school's first-ever state championship.

One of the golfers who played at the U.S. Open regional qualifier at Bridgeport's Pete Dye Golf Club on May 18 is in San Francisco this week for the Open.

Timothy Straub, 29, is a member of the Nike Tour who also plays some on the Asian Tour. He shot a 74 in the opening round on Thursday.

"It's pretty neat seeing somebody from the local qualifier playing at the U.S. Open," said Pete Dye Director of Golf Bill Stines.