No matter how small the members of the team may be, the 8-and-under Bartow County Softball all-stars accomplished something very big as the team won the Georgia State Dizzy Dean Tournament Sunday to move on to the Dizzy Dean World Series to begin July 11 in South Haven, Miss.
“I'm very proud of this team. They have come a long way,” coach Jamie Hanson said. “They played their hearts out and are very excited to win the state tournament and have the opportunity to play in the World Series.”
Hanson’s team has won four tournaments in the last two months, including the state championship this past weekend.
The members of the team are Amaya Ford, Lehla Ford, Campbell Rogers, Haley Stiles, Brylie Sanford, Jessica Ryan, Eryn Lee, Molly Speech, Kylee Hembree, Kylie Arnold and Alexis Woods.
The girls come from four different all-star teams to compete for this one talented squad.
“As a recreation department, we are really proud,” Brenton Baggett, Bartow County Recreation Department assistant director, said. “These girls have worked really hard for this accomplishment. The coaches have put in a lot of time and so have the parents to get them to practice and work with them. It’s just a great accomplishment for them and the community.”
This is the second year in a row Bartow County’s 8-and-under softball team has won the state tournament.
To win the state championship, the girls had to go 6-1, including winning both of their games Sunday facing elimination.
The competition will be stiff in Miss., but Hanson is confident in her team.
“They have played their hearts out and know the right time to make the plays, so I think they're going to do really well in the tournament,” Hanson said. “Their defense and hitting have improved over the season, and we have had a great season this year.”