Jordan Simpson is moving up the baseball coaching ladder.

Simpson, a Man High School graduate, former All-State baseball player for the Hillbillies and an ex-West Virginia State University standout, is the new head coach this summer of the American Legion Post 20 team out of Charleston.

Simpson has put together a hodgepodge of all-star players from the Charleston area as well as pulling some athletes from the southern West Virginia coal fields.

He also has a secret weapon.

Former Man High School and Ambassador Christian Academy head coach Larry Vance.

"We've got some local guys on our team along with pulling Larry Vance out of retirement to be an assistant coach," Simpson said.

He also has Matt McCallister on staff as an assistant.

Simpson was the head coach last summer of the West Virginia Bandits summer 18-and-under team.

The Post 20 opened up the season last Sunday with a sweep at Summersville, winning 12-0 and 10-3.

The Post 20 has some familiar faces on its roster from the area, including Chapmanville Regional High School rising junior Casey Hurley and former CRHS First-Team All-Stater Noah Dingess, who currently plays at Alice Lloyd College.

From Logan High School, the team has Peyton Branham, a graduated senior, who will be joining Dingess at Alice Lloyd this fall.

Representing Man High School on the roster is Tyler Lafferty, a just graduated senior, who is headed to play at West Virginia State University.

Carter Lyles (WVU) and Nathan Kuhn of Scott High School are also Post 20 team members but have not seen action yet as the Skyhawks were set to play this weekend in the Class AA state baseball tournament at Charleston's Appalachian Power Park.

A total of 11 former or current George Washington High School players are on the team including: Aidan Johnson (University of Charleston); AJ Golden; Brayden McCallister; Elias Miller (undecided); Evan Hughes; Issac McCallister; Jaeden Anderson; Preston Taylor (Potomac State); Trey Ritchie; Grant Fenwick; and Will Ellis.

Four Capital High School players also dot the roster, including: Andrew Sydenstricker; Logan Spurlock; Max Bland; and Michael Stuck (undecided).

Winfield High School rising senior Landen Fairchild is also on the team.

In the 10-3 win over Summersville, Hurley went 2-for-4- with an RBI. Miller had three hits, while Sydenstricker and Fairchild had two each.

Ritchie was the starting and winning pitcher. Sydenstricker and Fairchild pitched in relief.

The Post 20 pounded out 16 hits in the 12-0 win over Summersville in the opener of the twinbill.

Sydenstricker, Johnson, Taylor and Spurlock all hit home runs for the Post 20. Hurley was 2-for-3 at the plate. Spurlock was 4-for-4 with four RBIs.

Johnson was the starting and winning pitcher, going four innings and allowing no runs on one hit with six strikeouts and one walk. Branham pitched 2 2/3 innings of scoreless relief, yielding one hit with three punchouts and one walk.

The Post 20 has a bunch of games scheduled all over the state through the month of July. The team plays again on June 8 at Spring Valley in a doubleheader.

The American Legion area tournament is slated to begin July 23 while the state tournament to follow on July 30.

Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. Follow him on Twitter at @PAdkinsBanner or email him at padkins@hdmediallc.com

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