Pittsburg 12U advances to Midwest Region Tournament in Indianapolis
Pittsburg is set to play Iowa in the opening round on Friday at 4pm
PITTSBURG, Ks. – The Pittsburg 12u team won the state tournament last weekend, topping Baxter Springs 6-0 in the championship game. Now, they’ll be competing in the regional tournament in Indianapolis.
“This is the most incredible group of 12 year old boys I’ve every been around,” says Pittsburg head coach Kevin Deao. “They don’t care who gets the glory. They’re the most selfless kids in the world. They just want to go out and play baseball and be a team and play for each other. They all just want to win and do what it takes to win.”
Pittsburg’s strong pitching helped propel the team to the state title, and they are expecting it to continue to be a key factor in their success moving forward.
“Our pitching has been fantastic this year,” Deao says. “We really challenge the kids in the winter, working on pitching, throwing bull pens, to throw strikes. I checked today and I think we threw 70 percent strikes in the state tournament. That’s huge. When you’re not giving up free passes and you make the other team beat you, it’s really hard to get beat.”
Pittsburg will look to Landen Proffitt and Gabe Brown to set the tone on the mound.
“Those two guys go out and throw a lot of strikes and compete,” Deao says. “They’re going to be our two guys that are probably going to start our first two games up there in Indianapolis. I think they’re going to give us a really good shot to go out there and win some baseball games.”
It’s the second straight year that a Pittsburg little league team is representing Kansas at the regional tournament. Pittsburg is one of eight teams competing to earn a spot in the Little League World Series.
“It’s such a cool opportunity to go play teams from Iowa, Nebraska, Wisconsin, North Dakota,” Deao says. “We’re representing Pittsburg on the front of our jerseys. It’s cool to be up there playing on the big stage. Most people don’t know where Pittsburg, Kansas is or that there’s anything other than Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It’s cool to bring that to the spotlight.”
The team has spent the last few days fundraising for the trip.
“We have had the most incredible support from our community,” Deao says. “I think we’ve raised somewhere around $15,o00 in three days and it’s all because these boys have gone out and done the work. They’re talking to influential people in Pittsburg and business owners. The support has been so overwhelming. Hopefully we make a long run in Indianapolis. It’s such a cool experience for these boys and to see the support that Pittsburg has given them.”
Pittsburg heads out on Wednesday and will play Iowa in their first game on Friday at 4pm.
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