A local baseball team brought home a second-place title following the youth baseball Global World Series tournament held in Conway last week.
One hundred and fifty-nine teams from eight states – Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas – participated in the Arkansas edition of the Global World Series event, which was organized by the U.S. Specialty Sports Association’s Arkansas branch.
The AV Legends, a Greenbrier team, placed second in its division.
“It was a great experience to be able to play a tournament of this magnitude basically in our backyard,” coach Scotty Jutze said. “Teams from all over made up a bracket of 18 teams in the 10U division. The AV Legends rolled through the first six games undefeated and lost in the A (top bracket) championship by one run.”
The 10-and-under team is made of boys from Greenbrier, Vilonia, Conway and Searcy.
The boys’ coach said he was proud of the effort they put into the world series tournament and that he is glad they were able to play again in the midst of a global pandemic.
Though they wanted to finish out with a first-place finish, he was proud to see them bring home the second-place title, Jutze said.
“The boys played hard and gave everything they had all week long,” he said. “It was hot and a lot of ball, but they never quit. All the way to the lass inning of the championship, we were down 4-1 and fought back and had the tying run on third and winning run on second.”
The team was unable to practice together after schools and sporting events were shut down when the pandemic hit. However, they were able to reconvene and practice again as of June 1.
As of June 1, the coach said the AV Legends have participated in six tournaments, winning three of those and also placing second in the most recent tournament they played in.
During the Arkansas youth baseball Global World Series event, Jutze said his players worked hard, especially during pool play.
“All together, the AV Legends out scored their opponents 79-18. One of those in pool play included a crushing defeat of 23-4, where the Legends crushed five over-the-fence home runs,” Jutze told the Log Cabin Democrat. “The boys had their mind set on first, but it was still an awesome experience all week.”
Tournament organizer Jeremy Mahan said he was happy to see a great tournament and see so many youth get to participate in a sport they love in the midst of a chaotic pandemic.
“Everything went very well,” he said.