Greenville Little League team honored by lawmakers, governor
The Greenville Little League baseball team that challenged for the world title was feted Wednesday by the state’s elected leaders, who praised them for their on-the-field accomplishments and for representing North Carolina well to those who watched them.
The General Assembly welcomed players, their parents and coaches for the North State All-Stars team, honoring them with a special proclamation and recognition during its daily floor sessions. Team members also had lunch with legislators and staff.
The Greenville team became the first U.S. team in a Little League World Series to throw consecutive no-hitters during this month’s tournament in Williamsport, Pa. The team lost in the U.S. championship to a team from Lufkin, Texas, last Saturday and then lost a consolation game to Mexico the following day to finish fourth in the world.
“Close game, but I mean, we lose as a team, and we win as a team,” said Drew Fields, the son of coach Brian Fields.
“It was pretty bad, but you know, things happen,” Bruce Jackson said. “You don’t always win, but we came back to play Mexico. Even though we didn’t win, it was a really fun game.”
Sen. Don Davis, D-Pitt, said on the Senate floor that he went to Pennsylvania to see the team play and that the youngsters’ accomplishments endeared them to the fans attending the event.
“They have brought great honor to the city of Greenville, and also to Pitt County and the state of North Carolina,” said Sen. Louis Pate, R-Wayne.
The weekend losses were disappointing, but Drew Fields said the excitement of the experience was beyond belief.
“It was awesome. I mean, just having the experience, to just make it there,” he said. “There were 16 teams, and we were playing – and we were playing. How many millions, thousands of kids are wanting to be there? And I’m there. It’s just unbelievable.”
Jackson said all of the hoopla surrounding the team has been overwhelming.
“You can’t really wrap your head around it,” he said. “Even though we didn’t win, we’re still getting recognized like that, which is a great feeling.”
After being honored by the House on Wednesday afternoon, the players returned to Greenville for an evening recognition ceremony at Elm Street Park, where Gov. Roy Cooper was supposed to speak.