The Ashland Beacon
It’s not every day that parents and coaches of a team that have just won a state championship regard the moment as partially sad. And yet, after Boyd County’s U10 All Stars claimed the victory over South London at Joe Johnson Little League Park in Columbia, KY some considered it a sad thing that the journey was over, including Head Coach of the team, Matt Crowe.
“Honestly it was kinda mixed feelings. I was so happy for the girls and so proud of them, They have worked so hard and deserved this, but at the same time when the final out was recorded, I knew it was over,” Crowe explained, “State title is far as you can go in 10U. I guess I wasn’t ready for it to be over.”
Julie Thornbury, parent of two players on the team described the special quality of the team and parents who were pumped, sharing smiles, making videos, and cheering. “This group of kids and parents have blended together beautifully. No egos, no bickering, just encouragement for each other. I’m so sad it’s over,” Thornbury summarized.
Four players (Bonnie Smith, Lauren Craft, Elyn Simpkins and Jadyn Goad) went two-for-two at the plate, and Taylor Blevins struck out 11 on her way to a perfect game for the Boyd County All Stars. Crowe remarked, “Taylor Blevins started nine games and pitched a no hitter in four of the nine games, including three no-hitters in the state tournament and one perfect game. In 49 innings she recorded 126 strikeouts; she’s a one-in-a-million talent at pitcher.”
Of course, Crowe couldn’t say enough about his young team and what made them winners. He pointed out reasons for the success that the Boyd County All Stars have experienced, “Hard work! I had dedicated assistants in John Stephens and Jason Robbins who always came to practices, even when I had to work. Dedicated parents who brought their kids to practice every day. Not to forget dedicated kids who showed up to practice every day in the heat while other 8-10 year olds were in pools swimming and enjoying summer vacation; we practiced everyday.”
Crowe related, “We asked the girls in the very first practice in the first team meeting what their goals were for this team, and the answer we got was state champs. I am very impressed for kids that age to set a goal like that, work their tails off, and achieve what they set out to do. Hard work is a rare feature in most kids these days, definitely not in those at age 13!”