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78-year olds prepare for All-Star tourney

Demopolis’s Dixie Youth All-Star season is almost here.

First up to the plate will be the Demopolis’s “AA” All-Stars, the 7-and-8-year old team coached by Walter Tutt, John Lins, Jimmy Holtzclaw, and Mark Johnson. The “AA” All-Stars will take the field against Linden this Thursday night at Zach Rogers Park in Butler.

The team held its next-to-last practice at the West Side Elementary field late Tuesday afternoon. Despite temperatures well into the 90s, the players looked upbeat at practice and coach Tutt said afterwards they’re looking forward to facing Linden and having a good time.

“We’re going to go down there and have some fun,” he said. “We’re playing Linden and we’d like everybody to come out and support the kids. Linden vs. Demopolis is a big rivalry in any athletic event, so we’re hoping we can get a big crowd down there behind our team.”

Tutt said the 2005 All-Stars don’t stand out in any particular phase of the game, but do just about everything well.

“It’s a good balanced team,” he said. “We’ve got some good hitting, some good fielding…we just want to encourage everybody to come see them.”

The recent spate of inclement weather hasn’t been a problem for the team’s preparations, as Tutt says the practice schedule has been relaxed and the coaching staff isn’t looking to put any kind of pressure on the players.

“The rain hasn’t bothered us. We don’t practice a lot,” he said. “We just want the kids to have some fun with it.”

The Linden game will begin at 6 p.m. Thursday. “AA” All-Star team members are Will Allen, Blake Bowden, Tyler Colburn, Austin Dinning, Josh Holifield, Caleb Holtzclaw, Mark Joseph Johnson, Sam Renner, Jacob Rodrigues, Trent Spruell, Matthew Trest, Wallace Tutt, and Luke Yelverton.