‘They’re heroes’: Smithfield reacts to Little League World Series run coming to an end
SMITHFIELD, R.I. (WLNE) — It was a make-or-break game for the Smithfield All-Stars Tuesday night, taking on El Segundo, California.
The crowd cheered at The Trap North in Smithfield all evening in anticipation of the do-or-die game, and even after a 9-3 loss, spirits remained high.
“It’s always sad to see the kids lose right, but these kids played with heart, they played with gut, they played with grit, and we couldn’t be more proud of them. Nobody in the history of Smithfield Little League has made it to the stage that they’re on. They’ve represented us, and they’ve made us all so proud,” said Smithfield Little League President Shanyn Turner.
The All-Stars became known for winning with their backs against the wall, keeping crowds confident through a tough game, and that was part of the message from the beginning: win or lose, the team is coming home as heroes.
“We’re just honestly — yeah, the loss stinks, but it doesn’t overshadow the proudness that we all feel for them. They’re heroes,” Turner continued.
Now, the team will make their way back to Smithfield, but do so as one of the best Little League teams to come out of Rhode Island, with two wins in the World Series, and the pride and joy of their community.
“That was a good little run at the end, I was proud of them. I’ve always been proud of them, they’re just amazing boys,” Turner said. “They’ve got heart, they’ve got grit and they just love baseball and that’s what they came out here to play. And they played, they played well, they just — tonight wasn’t their night.”
Tuesday’s loss may hurt for a while, but the memories the team made will surely last forever.
The community will also make sure they get to see how much they meant while they were away, with a parade scheduled for Sept. 3.