Pictured above are the VPGSA 6U All-Stars with their banner, trophy and rings won for their runner-up finish at the PONY World Series. Bottom row (L to R): Evelyn Johnson, Mirabelle Deville, Georgie Lahaye, Kate Lahaye, Jamariee Freeman, Blakeleigh Galloway, Emry Figueiredo, Jacely Anderson, Adeline Buller, Vivian Chapman, Emily Duos and Olive Broussard. Back row (L to R): Assistant Coach Lea Johnson, Assistant Coach Robyn Duos, Head Coach Sadie Figueiredo and Assistant Coach Ben Broussard. (Photo courtesy of Lea Johnson)
Making a statement
YOUNGSVILLE -- The Ville Platte Girl’s Softball Association 6U T-Ball All-Stars came to the PONY World Series hoping to make a statement to the rest of the PONY nation that they were a team to be reckoned with.
And, the players did just that, going 6-3 overall and bringing the PONY World Series runner-up trophy back to Ville Platte.
“This season exceeded all of my expectations,” stated Ville Platte head coach Sadie Figueiredo. “I wouldn’t have traded this experience for anything in the world. These young girls truly played their hearts out all summer long. They improved each and every game right before the coach’s eyes. Even in the World Series, I had people come up to me and say that we were getting better and better with each game.”
“As a coach, the only thing that I regret is not pushing them more,” Figueiredo continued. “I just think that we as coaches could have taught them more skills. At the beginning, we did not really know how they were going to respond. But, one thing that this group has taught me is that you never underestimate what six-year olds can do.”
Ville Platte entered the World Series tournament having laid waste to every opponent they faced. The All-Stars had finished with several first place titles, including the PONY Sectional and PONY Regional championships, before the World Series began.
Ville Platte used that energy and experience to their advantage during the course of the tournament. The All-Stars slipped up only once during pool play, losing one of their three games.
However, once Ville Platte reached bracket play, the confidence continued to grow. The All-Stars began their march to the championship round with a close 14-12 win over Corpus Christi, Texas.
Bad weather caused the next bracket game to be moved to the next day. Still, the delay in play did not deter Ville Platte in any way, shape or form as they took down Hutto, Texas 13-10 in their second bracket game of the tournament.
Against Hutto, Ville Platte scored three runs in the first inning, only to see the Texas based team tie the game up in the same inning. The difference in the contest came in the second inning, when the All-Stars out scored Hutto 4-0 to open up a lead.
Ville Platte outpaced Hutto 4-3 in the third inning to take an 11-6 advantage. The fourth inning belonged to Hutto, as they plated four runs to Ville Platte’s two runs.
Nevertheless, it was not enough to keep Ville Platte out of the winner’s bracket. The victory over Hutto guaranteed the All-Stars a trip to the semi-finals as the number one seed out of their bracket and kept their hopes alive of bringing home the championship trophy.
Because of the way the final four bracket