For the second straight season, Spring Hill’s two-year old T-Ball program (ages 5-6) will be represented at the State Championship Tournament starting July 12 at Mulberry.
The West Hernando County club completed its District 6 action in fourth place following a 2-3 run last Saturday at Wildwood.
This week, Spring Hill skipper Dave Lawson learned from Spring Hill director Joe Abbadessa that there was an opening for an addition team in the Polk County event.
Spring Hill accepted the invitation and will now join district champion Wesley Chapel, runner-up Wildwood and third-place Bushnell at states.
Upon hearing the news, Coach Lawson pounced on the opportunity to advance his club.
Last year given new life, Craig Hotop’s Spring Hill T-Ballers similarly turned heads by finishing as state runners-up at Sebring.
Despite three District 6 losses, Coach Lawson believes his squad is battle-tested prior to reaching Polk County.
Ironically, the District 6 T-Ball champion has successfully captured states in three of the first four state championship tournaments.
“Our goal all along was to go to states,” indicated Coach Lawson. “After districts, we were all a little disappointed in dropping our last three games.
“This definitely gives us another chance to play,” he added. “We know what we did well and more importantly we know what we didn’t do so well. This gives us a chance to get back out there and get better.”
In other Dixie Baseball notes, turns out that two of the top three finishing in the U-15 State Tournament – state runner-up Spring Hill B and the third-place Brooksville Bullets – will not be attending the Region I Tournament held this weekend at Ozark, Ala.
After Spring Hill B finished second to Polk County, skipper Shawn Laferty indicated this week, “I’ve heard nothing but good things about the regional, but at this time we’re focusing on taking our team to the July 12 16-Under Pre-Majors Tournament at Fort Meade.”
The Brooksville Bullets, who finished 2-2 under Bruce Price, also officially bowed out.
“I heard they couldn’t get enough teams to go to Charleston, South Carolina (for the proposed Region II Tournament), so instead they’re holding it at Ozark,” noted Coach Price. “If wish we could go, but we’ve got too many kids out on summer vacations.
“At this point, we’re trying to put a team together for the Fort Meade tournament.”