By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Newton Knights runner-up at King of Diamond tourney
Placeholder Image

CONYERS - The Newton Knights, an AA 11 and under travel baseball team from Covington, competed in the King of the Diamond tournament last weekend at Legion Field.

The Knights won four games in the 10-team single elimination tournament, with their only loss coming in the title game against the Hampton Eagles, 10-2.

The game was tied, 2-2, entering the second inning before the Eagles scored five runs in the third and three more in the fourth to seal the deal.

Coached by Leroy James, Terry Ballard and Mark Clark, the Knights include Hunter Ballard, Casey Palmer, J.L. Banks, Benjamin Moses, Garrett Witcher, Ross Kirkpatrick, Evan House, Jalen Martin, Hunter Clark, A. J. Howard and Yorel James.

In the first game of pool play, which seeds the teams for bracket play, the Knights beat the Rockdale Rhinos of Conyers on Friday evening, 10-7.

Before the brutal storms ended play for most of the teams on Saturday, the Knights defeated the Wolfpack of Acworth, 7-1.

On Sunday, the Knights were victorious against the North Henry Cardinals of Stockbridge, 14-10. They continued their winning streak in the second game of bracket play by routing the Rockdale Rhinos for the second time in the tournament, 11-10.

The victory set up the matchup against the Eagles in the championship game.

Overall, the Knights scored 44 runs in five games throughout the tournament, with a team batting average of .422.

Ballard and Palmer led the Knights with a .667 batting average apiece. Banks batted .583, while Moses and Witcher averaged .500.

Kirkpatrick followed with a solid .429 clip. House hit .375 and Martin batted .357 to round out the sluggers.

On the mound, Clark led the rotation with the most innings pitched at seven, followed by Kirkpatrick (six). James pitched four and one-thirds innings, with Palmer working three frames.

Moses contributed with one inning of relief work.

In addition, opposing teams had a .265 batting average against the Knights in the tournament.

Thus far, the Knights have competed in four tournaments this year, which include a first place and two second place finishes.

According to the USSSA baseball ranking, the Knights are eighth in the points system, third in the power rating and second in the states coaches poll.

For more information about the Newton County Knights, visit the Web site at or send e-mail to