Perry 8U All-Stars defies odds, headed to Dixie Youth World Series


PERRY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Who said underdogs can’t make it to the top?

Not the Perry 8-and-under All-Stars.

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The team is headed to their first-ever Dixie Youth World Series in Ruston, Louisiana July 26 thru 30.

But the road wasn’t easy.

They weren’t even considered an “A-Team” due to the original A-Team choosing travel ball over Dixie Youth Baseball.

However, you can’t stop a team with a big heart and a never-say-die attitude.

“I’m all for a challenge. And I can tell these kids are too,” assistant coach Josh Mantei said. “And they come out here each and every day, giving us everything they possibly have. They’re all laying out, with bloody noses, getting black eyes, and everything else.”

That attitude is something that can’t be measured.

Perry won two games and lost one in Round 1 of the state playoffs, beating Swainsboro and Troup County. Its loss came against Jones County Purple.

The All-Stars went 2-2 in Round 2. They eliminated Jones County Purple and Gold but lost to North Macon, who went undefeated.

Head coach Kyle Gordon says the team has embraced the underdog mentality.

“It kind of made them have a chip on their shoulder,” Gordon said. ” They kind of show out. The play with a little more grit and determination. The amount of heart they play with when we go to tournaments and play in games is just unfathomable.”

The Perry 8-and-under team will represent Georgia in the Machine Pitch bracket in the Dixie Youth World Series.