A pair of Payson High School standouts will soon be showcasing their diamond skills in the prestigious Arizona Baseball Coaches Association North vs. South All-Star game.
Anthony Pearce and Nick Herring were selected to play in the celestial clash to be contested June 7 at Surprise Stadium. The site is the spring training home of the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals.
The two were chosen in a voting of ABCA members held last week in the Valley.
Also for Payson, Nick Abraham was chosen an alternate and will be allowed to play, should any of those chosen ahead of him drop out.
The game annually pits the finest graduating high school senior baseball players against one another in one final prep skirmish.
For the showdown, the players are divided into geographical North and South all-star teams with the Payson players aligned on the North.
By being selected an ABCA all-star, Pearce and Herring join a select group of former Longhorns who also played in the postseason game.
They include, among others, Scotty Garduno, Ky Bradley, Tom Canale, Jeremy Heairet, Waylon Pettet and Matt LeVac.
All are remembered as some of the finest players to ever represent the school.
At the conclusion of the regular season in a voting of East coaches, Pearce was named all-region second team and Herring and Abraham were honorable mention selections.
Last season, Pearce posted a 3-3 pitching record with a 3.18 ERA. When not pitching, Pearce held down the first base slot where he had a .936 fielding percentage. At the plate, he hit .353 with seven doubles.
Herring was another potent hitter in a Longhorn lineup that featured 10 players with batting averages over the magical .300 mark. He compiled a .400 average with 13 runs scored, 13 RBIs and four stolen bases.
Abraham hit .306 with 15 runs scored and 10 RBIs. He also stole three bases and fielded at a .857 clip.
PHS coach Jerry Daniels, who nominated the three players for the all-star game, believes the trio is deserving of the honor.
"I expect them to do well," he said.