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JSerra's Chase Strumpf. Photo courtesy JSerra Athletics
JSerra’s Chase Strumpf. Photo courtesy JSerra Athletics

By Steve Breazeale

During the high school baseball offseason, there are a lot of individual showcases on display. So when JSerra head baseball coach Brett Kay decided to start an annual offseason baseball tournament, he wanted the focus to lie on players rejoining their team and playing as one.

In the inaugural year of JSerra baseball’s Martin Luther King Holiday Tournament, Kay and the other event organizers succeeded in gathering some of the top teams from Orange County and beyond to don their school’s colors and get back into the swing of high school competition.

From January 18-20, 16 teams will take the field at eight different host venues to take part in the exhibition-style tournament.

“We wanted to do a team-type tournament. Understanding the colleges are on a quiet period on recruiting gives the high school coaches an opportunity to get their teams going,” Kay said. “The goal right now is to offer a super competitive environment for these teams to get ready for the season.”

Some of the top local teams competing will be JSerra, Aliso Niguel, Capistrano Valley, Mission Viejo and San Clemente. Kay estimates around 35-45 Division 1 committed athletes to participate.

JSerra kicks off their tournament slate with a 9 a.m. game against Harvard Westlake on January 18. For a full schedule of the Lions games, visit www.jserrabaseball.com.

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