For the first time since 2004, the Kennett American Legion baseball team has qualified for the Chester County League playoffs.Kennett accomplished the feat last Thursday night as they defeated West Chester by a score of 6-2 at Unionville High School to lock up its post-season berth.
The Colts, who went 9-9 in the league this season, were scheduled to open the double-elimination Chester County League playoffs on Tuesday, July 15 against No. 1 seeded Downingtown. The game occurred after our press time.
Simply making it to the post-season was a definite step in the right direction for Kennett's program. They had missed the league playoffs in each of the previous three years. Last season Kennett went just 5-12, and they started off this season by dropping seven of its first nine games.
"It was definitely a tough start. We were 2-7 after playing what I thought would be the easiest part of our schedule," said Kennett manager Jim Smedley. "But we won a couple of close games after that and started to believe in ourselves. Before we knew it we were one-game under five hundred and we could see our way out of the hole.
"I'm very proud of these guys. Our goal at the beginning of the year was to make the playoffs, and we've achieved that goal. Now we're just hoping to hang around for a while."
Kennett finished eighth this season in the 14-team league and earned the final playoff spot. The Colts were scheduled to face top-seeded Downingtown on July 15 then play again on July 16 in either the winners or losers bracket.
"On paper we're not the favorites. We're underdogs," said Smedley. "But this team has really gelled and proven it can play with anybody. In 20 years of coaching baseball this season has been one of the more pleasant experiences I've had.
"This season we were trying to earn back the respect of the Kennett Legion program throughout our league, and we've certainly done that."