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Baseball 2007-2008
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Baseball 2007-2008 Team Photo; Front row: Demeetrius Neal, Carlton Littlejohn, Jerry Alexander, Justin Hutchinson, Elijah Easley, Dion Robinson, Back Row: Head Coach Charles Simmons, Dedrick Coleman, Kahjuan Evans, Alfred Ray, Demetree Robinson, Alexander Clark, Antonio Davis, Assistant Coach Tommy Ross

The 2007-2008 Baseball season began with coach Charles Simmons entering his third year as head coach.  He believed that the team could be very successful, despite having a team that returned only two seniors and one junior.  The reason for this optimism was the growth demonstrated by the young players through last season and summer ball.

 

The season’s first game was on April 9 against Washburn at North Commons Park.  The results were similar to last season.  The Polars gave up 12 runs in the first inning, on their way to a 29-0 defeat. The Polars did not record a hit and the only base runner, Kahjuan Evans, reach base via a walk.  The North pitchers, however, combined

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Antonio Davis: Senior--- Second year playing baseball---Also played football---Antonio says playing baseball is fun.
for 10 strikeouts in five innings!  Ten errors helped Washburn score early and often.

 

The Polars traveled to Van Cleve Park  to face the Tigers from South.  South scores two in the bottom of the first.  North scored one in the top of the third to cut the Tiger lead to 2-1.  South scores five runs in the bottom of the third inning, but the Polars would not quit.  They scored single runs in the fourth and fifth innings.  However, the Tigers answered each Polar score with scores of their own, two in the fourth and four in the fifth.  The final score of 13-3 did not demonstrate how well the Polars played.  Kahjuan Evans and Justin Hutchinson each recorded their first hits of the season.  Six Polar batters were walked and Carlton Littlejohn was hit by two pitches.  The

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Alfred Ray: Senior---Third year playing baseball---Also played football—Earned three letters (two in football and one in baseball).
defensive play of the game was made by second baseman E.J. Easley who, on a pop up to short center field, turned, ran and dove for the ball, making a spectacular catch.

 

April 16 was the date of the third game.  The Polars returned home to face Southwest.  The Polars tried everything to sink the Lakers, including using five different pitchers, four who had never pitched in a game prior to this.  The Polars walked 14 batters and gave up 18 hits in route to a 30-4 defeat. 

 

The Polars next game at North Commons was against Edison.  Former Polar, Adrian Waters, now playing for Edison, started the game.  The Polars countered with Sophomore E.J. Easley pitching in his first game.  Easley gave up four runs in the first inning after facing four hitters,

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Dedrick Coleman: Junior---First year playing baseball---Also wrestles.
walking three and giving up one hit.  However, the relief pitchers of Demetree Robinson and Donte Green shut the Tommies out for the next four innings.  However, Kahjuan Evans could not keep the streak going.  The Tommies scored 15 runs in the top of the fifth inning.  North did not score and the final score was Edison 19, North 0.

 

North traveled to the far side of north Minneapolis to face arch-rival Henry.  The Polars scored first, taking their first lead of the season.  It was short-lived however.  The Patriots scored four in the bottom of the first and seven in the bottom of the second to take and 11-1 lead. The Polars struck for one in the third, but the Patriots also scored one.  The Pats then scored six in the bottom of the fourth.  The Polars

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Elijah Easley: Sophomore---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football and wrestles---Earned one letter (Wrestling)—E.J. is attracted to baseball because of the difficulty of the sport. To him, baseball requires a lot of dedication.
ended the scoring with one in the top of the fifth for an 18-3 Patriot victory.  Carlton Littlejohn was the hitting star, going 2 for 2, scoring two runs and stealing three bases.  Total, the Polars stole six bases in six attempts.  The defensive play was again turned in by E.J. Easley, who took a ball off of his face to keep it in front of him.  After the game, he told Coach Simmons that when the coach came to check on him, and he said he was fine, he was not truthful.  He said, “Coach, I was seeing eight of you!”

 

Washburn was the next opponent on April 28 at Pearl Park.  Donte Green recorded the only hit for the Polars.  Three other Polars reached base on walks, while 11 Polar batters struck out on their way to a 27-0 defeat.

 

The

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Carlton Littlejohn: Sophomore---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football and wrestles---Earned one letter (Wrestling)—Earned five letters (Two each in football and wrestling and one in baseball), named Most Valuable player in wrestling (2007-2008 season), All City in Wrestling (2007-2008 season) and state individual wrestling entrant (2007-2008 season)---Carlton likes baseball because he like to throw and catch. To him, baseball involves a lot of hand-eye coordination.
Polars then played Roosevelt for the first time.  The game should have been played before the second Washburn game, but was postponed due to poor weather.  The team, along with the Polar Softball team, traveled to Bossen field where both played the Teddies.  Again, the Polars scored first, tallying a 1-0 lead.  The Teddies tied the score in the bottom of the first and took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the second.  The Polars then tied the score in the top of the third.  The Teddies then scored five in the bottom of the third.  The teams each scored one in the fourth and sixth innings.  The final score of 9-4 in favor of Roosevelt was a heart-breaking loss.  The team played seven innings for the first time this season.  Carlton Littlejohn pitched a complete game (6 innings) striking out 12! The Polars had 11 hits, two each by Alex Clark and Demetrius Neal. 
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Demetree Robinson: Sophomore---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football---To Demetree, baseball is a fun sport.
The team was 7 for 7 in stolen bases and only made two errors in the field.

 

The team took time away from their conference schedule for the first time to play the Agriculture and Food Sciences Academy.  During the game, a reporter from the Star-Tribune was writing a story about two of the AFSA players, one who was deaf and one who was female.  Unfortunately, the Polars managed only six hits and one run, while AFSA scored 18.  The defensive plays of the game were made by Alfred Ray who was constantly knocking hard smashes down at third base.

 

South came to North Commons for their second game against the Polars.  Again, the Polars managed only one hit, a double by Justin Hutchinson, and three walks.  The Tigers seemed to hit at will collecting

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Kahjuan Evans: Sophomore ---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football---Kahjuan says baseball is not really as complicated as most people believe it is.
14 hits and scoring 19 runs for the shutout of the Polars.  This was the first time the Polar pitchers walked fewer than 10 batters, walking only five.

 

The Polars traveled to Nieman Sports Complex to play Southwest for the second time.  Donte Green pitched a complete game in this loss.  The Polars actually played better than the final score of 18-0.  Only four errors were made.  Green walked only six.  Demetree Robinson broke up the Laker pitchers no hitter with a hit in the top of the fifth inning for the only Polar safety.  Earlier, E.J. Easley broke up the perfect game with a walk.  Emmanuel Perry also reached base when he was hit by a pitch.

 

The Polars traveled again for a non-conference game against Heritage Christian Academy/Providence Academy. 

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Alexander Clark: Sophomore ---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football and wrestles.
Justin Hutchinson had two hits and scored the only Polar run.  Carlton Littlejohn Pitched four innings, giving up six rung but striking out five.  Again, seven errors did in the Polars. 

 

The Polars stayed on the road to play Edison for the second time.  The Polars struck for two runs in the first inning.  They scored one in the second.  The Tommies scored two in the bottom of the second to cut the lead to 3-2.  The Polars lead going into the bottom of the fifth inning, the longest they have led in over two years.  However, the Tommies scored eight runs in the bottom of the fifth and three more in the bottom of the sixth to win 13-3.  Again, the Polar pitchers of Justin Hutchinson and Carlton Littlejohn struck out 11 Tommy batters.  Demetrius Neal was 2 for 3 with

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Justin Hutchinson: Sophomore ---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football and wrestles---Earned four letters (two in wrestling and one each in baseball and football)---Justin says he has always liked playing baseball. He loves turning the double play when playing shortstop. He says you have to be fundamentally sound in order to succeed in baseball.
2 RBIs to lead the Polar offensive attack..  The ride home was extremely quiet because the Polars knew they left their first victory slip away.

 

The Polars then played their third non-conference game, this time against Minnesota Transitions Charter School.  The Game began like many previous games with the visiting Transitions team scoring two runs in the top of the first.  However, for this game, the team did not quit.  The Polars came back and scored six in the bottom of the first.  Thinks started looking bleak when transitions scored four to tie the game at 6.  However, the Polars scored seven in the bottom of the inning.  The Polars kept scoring on their way to a 21-8 victory.  The win broke

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Donte Green: Sophomore---Second year playing baseball---Also plays football and wrestles---Earned one letter (Wrestling)—Earned four letters (two in wrestling and one each in football and baseball)---Most people do not know that baseball is a game of failure because even the best players fail 7 out of ten times that they come to bat.
a 38 game losing streak, which spanned parts of three seasons.  Kahjuan Evans pitched a complete game to earn the victory.  He also struck out 14.  Evans was also one of the hitting stars, going 3 for 4 with two RBIs.  However, Justin Hutchinson went 3 for 3 with one double, scored four runs and drove in five.  The Polars amassed 15 hits and 16 stolen bases. Eleven of the 12 Polar players scored at least one run. 

 

The Polars then hosted Henry for the second time.  The score of 7-1 in favor of the Patriots after four innings showed that the Polars were in the game.  However, the Patriots unloaded on the Polars for 13 runs in the top of the fifth. 

 

The Polars hoped for revenge from Roosevelt

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Emmanuel Perry: Freshman---First year playing baseball--- Also plays football and wrestles---Earned one letter (wrestling)
from their first game.  The Polars scored two in the Bottom of the first, but gave the lead away when the Teddies scored five.  The Polard did not quit, coming back for two more.  The Teddies scored one in the third and both teams scores three in the fourth.  With the score 9-7 in favor of Roosevelt, the Teddies scored seven in the fifth and four in the sixth to win the game 20-7.  Again, Polar pitchers struck out 12 Teddy batters.  However, six Polar errors led to eight unearned runs.  Alfred Ray was the offensive star for the Polars going 2 for 2, scoring one run, driving in one run and stealing two bases. 

 

The Polars finished the regular season with a non-conference game against the Math & Science Academy. 

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Dion Robinson: 8th Grade--- First year playing baseball--- Also plays football and wrestles---Earned one letter (wrestling) and named Rookie of the Year in wrestling (2007-2008 season)---Dion decided to play baseball because of the football and wrestling teammates who told him how much fun they had playing in the past season, so he decided to give baseball a try.
Nothing the Polars did seemed to go right.  In the field, the Polars committed 13 errors, by eight different players.  On offense, the Polars managed only two hits, three walks and one hit batter.  Somehow, the Polars scored four runs.  However, the MSA scored 15.  The bright spot again was the pitching, which combined for 11 MSA strikeouts.

 

The final game of the season was played in the region subsection.  The Polars, seeded #8, faced #1 seed Delano.  The Polars did not get a hit and only had one baserunner, E.J. Easley, who walked on five pitches.  A scare was put into the Polars when a Delano batter hit a line shot right back to relief pitcher Donte Green.  The ball hit Green in the ankle. 

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Head Coach Charles Simmons: Third year coaching baseball at North---2-35 overall record in previous two seasons---Coach Simmons says the future of North baseball is bright. With very few upper classmen, North should be very competitive once the young players gain the experience needed to compete. He believes the players have the talent to win now.
After the play ended, Green smiled while Coach Simmons ran to seen if Green was hurt.  Green took a couple of pitches, stayed in the game and finished the inning, facing only five batters to get two out. 

 

The season ended for the Polars with a 1-16 overall record and a 0-12 conference record for 7th place.  Two Polars, Justin Hutchinson and Carlton Littlejohn, were named all conference by the vote of the conference baseball coaches.  A coach CANNOT vote for his own players.  A third player, E.J. Easley, also impressed the other coaches with is defensive play however he fell short of the honor.

 

Justin Hutchinson led the team in almost all offensive categories, at bats (42), hits (14), runs (13), doubles (3), RBI (7), and average (.333).  He tied with Carlton Littlejohn with 1 triple.  E.J. Easley

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Assistant Coach Tommy Ross: First year coaching at North
led the team with 11 walks.  Donte Green had a team leading two sacrifices. Carlton Littlejohn was hit five times with pitches.  Unfortunately, three players struck out more that 20 times (Littlejohn, 24, Green, 23 and Alex Clark, 21.)

 

Carlton Littlejohn dominated the pitching statistics.  He led the team in innins pitched (26.2), batters faced (241), Hits allowed (58), runs allowed (106) earned runs allowed (58), wild pitched (30), strikeouts (48), and losses (7).  Justin Hutchinson led the team with 10 hit batters.  Kahjuan Evans won the only game and had a 12.07 ERA. (Demetree Robinson had a 0.00 ERA, but only pitched one inning.)  Three pitchers were on the conference leader board for strikeouts.  Littlejohn was second (42), Hutchinson fourth (34) and Evans ninth (22).


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2007-2008 Polar Baseball Team: Front Row: Demeetrius Neal, Carlton Littlejohn, Jerry Alexander, Justin Hutchinson, Elijah Easley, Dion Robinson Back Row: Head Coach Charles SImmons, Dedrick COleman, Kahjuan Evans, Alfred Ray, Demetree Robinson, Alexander Clark, Antonio Davis, Assistant Coach Tommy Ross