Deep River makes a run to summer baseball championship series

BY CHAPEL FOWLER, News + Record Staff
Posted 8/5/20

Playing outside their usual home stadium and in a season like no other, the Deep River Muddogs came up two games short of a championship last weekend.

The Muddogs, who usually play in Ramseur but …

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Deep River makes a run to summer baseball championship series

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Posted

Playing outside their usual home stadium and in a season like no other, the Deep River Muddogs came up two games short of a championship last weekend.

The Muddogs, who usually play in Ramseur but moved to High Point this season, won three straight elimination games in the 2020 Old North State League playoffs before falling to the Guilford Lumberkings in a best-of-three title series Thursday and Friday.

Deep River, the No. 6 seed in the league’s aptly named “You Can Go Home Now Cup,” entered the playoffs 10-16 before ripping off three straight wins against the Carolina Coyotes (8 to 3), Mocksville Muscadines (8 to 5) and the Swepsonville Sweepers (14 to 2).

But the Muddogs, who adopted the nickname Underdogs as last week’s tournament played out, ran into a buzzsaw in the No. 1 seed Lumberkings. Guilford won the first game, 11-5, and eked out a 2-1 win in the second and deciding game to secure the championship on July 31.

“Special group of guys,” Muddogs coach Riley Nelson tweeted after the game. “Proud to have grown with y’all this summer!”

Nelson, an assistant coach at Guilford Tech Community College, added in a follow-up tweet that the Old North State League “proved sports (baseball) can be playing during this ‘pandemic’ with ZERO issues.”

Reggie Allred, who owns The Factory, a baseball facility in Siler City, has run the eight-team league as commissioner along with his son, Alec, since 2018.

The ONSL began its third season in June, adhering to a normal schedule with coronavirus-related restrictions such as no high fives after games. And each of the eight stadiums allowed either no fans or reduced-capacity seating only.

The Muddogs, who played at the Truist Point stadium in High Point, featured two locals on their roster: former Chatham Central pitcher Caleb Staley and former Jordan-Matthews pitcher Kevin Cano Ramirez (both profiled in last week’s News + Record).

Deep River’s Cort Maynard, a former Guilford Tech player headed to N.C. Central, was also named the 2020 ONSL Player of the Year on Friday. He hit .425 with 20 runs batted in, 10 doubles, two triples and three homers, in 80 at-bats.

Reporter Chapel Fowler can be reached at cfowler@chathamnr.com or on Twitter at @chapelfowler.

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