Local all-star team state bound

Published 7:49 pm Tuesday, July 7, 2009

For the first time in nearly a month, the 12U all-star team had something give it trouble, the rain.

In its first practice in nearly a week after defeating Sumter County’s 12U squad, Demopolis took the field, getting ready to gear up for their biggest tournament yet.

The team will travel Friday to Gadsden to compete for the right to be called the best 12U squad in the state.

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Manager Rob Pearson knows what type of competition is ahead for his players.

“Every team had to earn their way to this point, there won’t be any bad teams. If we stay within ourselves and play our game, we will have a chance to win every game,” Pearson said.

The ability to work together last week allowed the 12U team to garner a collective .415 batting average, score 87 runs over the course of seven games and only give up four scores in that same span.

Pearson has been stressing to his players the need to stay in the moment once the game begins.

“We have been telling them to just take things one game at a time, one inning at a time,” he said.

Gong into the tournament, it is fairly obvious to the average observer that this team can hit.

“We have tough outs 1-12,” said Pearson. “Any one of our guys can do damage at any point in time.”

Defense and pitching have also been strengths for the 12Us. The team has 6 capable pitchers available at any point to throw out on the mound.

“We feel like we are deep enough pitching-wise to do something in this tournament,” Pearson said. “All six of our guys are good enough to get the job done.”

Deep pitching is a key to tournament-type play. With many games over the span of four days, Demopolis will need all of those arms to perform at their best in hopes of taking away the title.

Pearson is confident in his team’s abilities but still knows what he is up against.

“If we play our game, I feel like we can be the best team on the field,” he said. “But we will be facing the toughest competition we have yet. The challenge is exciting and is what we are looking forward to.”