"Once they get in the stall, they're ready to get in the spotlight," Gardner said.
They're not alone, apparently.
Other skippers expressed similar sentiments about their teams as they embark on journeys to different parts of the Bluegrass for the
The Ashland National Junior Leaguers will take part in a four-team double-elimination event in
"Our philosophy is, put the ball in play, hustle and make the other team beat you," McDowell said. "We want to put as much pressure on the other team as we can with our speed ... We had a suicide squeeze (in the
Exquisite pitching, led by
Ashland's pitching rotation reaches so deep that McDowell may manage as he might if he was in the
"We have five or six kids who could start any game, and they all throw equally hard," McDowell said. "We'll give teams several different looks."
Both Russell-Flatwoods 10-11s and Morehead 11-12s will be gunning for a Tuesday ticket. All the championship games are scheduled for Wednesday.
Gardner also possesses a stable of arms --
"We've got several pitchers who need just one run to win a ball game," Gardner said.
Gardner has kept his team hopping during a full two weeks of practice in preparation for their chance to shine.
"We probably take anywhere from 150 to 200 cuts a day, and shag 75 fly balls and field 75 ground balls a day," Gardner said. "We're not just standing around out there ... And our kids have surprisingly stayed very focused -- no bickering, no arguing back and forth."
Gardner credited assistant coaches
On Saturday, the
Russell takes on Muhlenberg County on Saturday at
Russell flexed its collective muscle as it poured 20 runs on Catlettsburg in the
Said Peterman then: "We've always been a good-hitting team. This year is our best so far."
The Ashland National Junior League All-Stars consist of 13- and 14-year-olds.
Dubbed the "comeback kids" by manager
Most of the games in the tournament will be played at
Each of the managers thanked their respective communities for its efforts in helping raise funds for each team's travel expenses.
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