LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — For the first time since 2019, the Arkansas Activities Association is hosting its statewide all-star games in Conway. With teams divided into East and West based on the players’ schools, top seniors in the class of 2022 were selected equally from classes 1A-6A to compete this weekend.

Team sports with all-star games at UCA include baseball, softball, volleyball, boys & girls soccer, boys & girls basketball, and football. Nick Walters was at Friday’s baseball game to hear how special this experience is for participating student-athletes to put the finishing touches on their accomplished high school careers.

“Post-pandemic, it’s a great opportunity to get these boys back out here at UCA and honor all they’ve accomplished on the ball field for the last twelve months,” Little Rock Catholic and East team head coach Bryan Jones said.

“It’s crazy to get together with the best guys from Arkansas and play to the best of our abilities to represent our school,” Pulaski Academy standout and Oklahoma signee Patrick Engskov said. “There’s definitely bragging rights out there because each of us want to be the best team.”

On the diamond for the East All-Stars included Razorbacks pitcher signee Gage Wood of Batesville and voted-on Arkansas player of the year, Harding Academy pitcher Gavin Alveti. Some of the most talented ball players in the state playing together on the same field was a cool sight for the packed bleachers of spectators.

“Class of 2022 in the state of Arkansas from 1A-6A is a really strong baseball class,” Jones said. “A lot of great kids who come from a lot of great programs. To have such great players all together really puts a spotlight on how great Arkansas baseball is right now.”