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11-and-under Bearcats second in state

THE BAINBRIDGE 11-and-under United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) AA team that finished second in the state gather around their plaque. From left, front; Tyler Ross, Bentley Green, Jackson Neismith, T.J. Andrews and Kaleb Boutwell. back; Coach Al Keley, Mark Loeffler, Will Kelley, Buck Bennett, Head Coach Stacey Strickland, Conner Strickland, Dustin Hodge, Coach Hank Holt and Hank Holt Jr.

The Bainbridge Bearcats 11-year-old and under baseball team are second in the state in the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) AA division.

After completing an outstanding 35-20 regular season, and finishing number two out of 106 AA teams in the state, they qualified for the State Final 4.

The state championship series started June 11 with 56 teams competing in tournaments in Cordele, East Atlanta, West Atlanta and North Atlanta.

Winners of each tournament advanced to the Final 4. The junior Bearcats beat teams from Columbus, Moultrie, Macon, Warner Robins and Tifton.

Joining the Bearcats, who were the No. 3 seed in the Final 4, were the No. 1 seed Fayette Force from Fayetteville, Ga., the No. 2 seed Orange Crush from Dallas, Ga., and the No. 4 seed Sharon Spring Spartans from Cumming, Ga.

Saturday’s semi-final games pitted the Crush against the Bearcats. The Bearcats won the series and advanced to the finals.

The Bearcats dropped two close games to the Fayette Force in the championship round. They dropped the opener 10-6 and they were edged 10-9 in the championship game.

The 11-and-under Bearcats will have two weeks of open tryouts for their fall season beginning July 23. More information about the time and place of tryouts can be obtained by contacting Stacy Strickland at (229) 220-2205 or Al Kelley at (229) 515-0086.