A trio of local players took part in last week’s North Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association All-Star game. The annual event was held at Horner Ballpark on the campus of Dallas Baptist University on June 15.
Teammates Dalton Dunn and Sheldon Paramore of Legacy joined Timberview’s Micah Walker on the West squad to represent the Mansfield ISD. The West team dominated the game, winning 9-4.
For these seniors, it was a final opportunity to represent their high school teams on the field.
“It was amazing to put on the uniform for my school one last time,” Walker said. “Even though the season didn’t end how we wanted it to, I was still able to showcase my talent in a different way and a different light at that game.”
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“It was definitely nice,” Dunn said. “Our season ended on a sour note, short of where we wanted. So it was nice to put on that jersey one more time.”
It was also special for Dunn to share the event with a longtime teammate.
“It’s nice to have someone there with you, a teammate, to get to share and experience that with them,” he said.
“It was comforting,” Paramore added. “I grew up with Dalton, so it was nice to know I had a good friend going with me and somebody else from my school that I knew.”
And though rivals during the regular season, Wolves and Broncos actually teamed up on the field in this game, as Dunn and Walker combined to turn a double play in the field.
All three Mansfield players also contributed to the offensive stat sheet. Dunn, who will play at Weatherford Junior College next season, finished 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored. Paramore was 1-for-2 and scored on a home run by Southlake Carroll’s Nic Motley. Walker, a Mountain View College pledge, also had a double.
“My team got the win and I was able to contribute and put one of the hits on the board, so I was happy about that,” Walker commented.
Perhaps more importantly, the players each got the opportunity to face high-caliber competition, similar to what they can expect next year at the college level.
“It was eye-opening,” Paramore said. “I think it was how it’s going to be in college, so it’s good to realize that this is the kind of talent I’m going to be playing against throughout my career. It was nice to get a preview of what it’ll be like.”
It was also an opportunity to try to turn a few heads.
“I was really just trying to get into the zone,” Walker said. “When you’re invited to things like that with high quality players, you would think that college coaches would be there. You’re really just on your toes, eager to make a play or get a hit or something to catch those guys’ eyes.”
“It was really important [to get that experience] so it becomes normal to play in places like that and sounds like that,” he continued. “I’ve already been exposed to that so I won’t be as nervous or anxious to do the stuff I know I can do. I can just get out there and play my game.”
“It got us prepared for how it’ll be next year, with the crowd and the atmosphere,” Paramore added. “It was a different feeling going from high school to that, but I think it’ll help us for next year.”