Natchez Dixie Youth teams played their last game of the season
By Reina Kempt
The Natchez Democrat
NATCHEZ — The Natchez Dixie Youth baseball season ended with the nine and ten year old first place game against Smith Printing and Scott’s Welding and Machine Shop, and only one team would come out victorious.
Scott’s Welding ended in dominating fashion as they ousted Smith Printing 9-2.
After the game, Scott’s Welding head coach Ron Rushing huddled up his group of boys and told them several times how proud he was.
“Y’all are the league champions, good job,” is the first thing he said to them.
They cheered in triumph before he continued to tell them that their time together isn’t over just yet.
“We’re going to have a pizza party some time next week,” he said. “I’m proud of y’all. Y’all earned it.”
With his players exhilarated between becoming first-place winners and the thought of Pizza Hut looming in their minds, he told his boys to bring their huddle in one last time before they walked away with their names on their trophies to show their parents what they’ve accomplished.
For Rushing, coaching is something he has done for almost 15 years, but this year was different.
“I coached high school baseball for 14 years but this summer I got to coach my son,” Rushing said. “I have never been able to coach him.
Rushing said that he loved coaching his son and he is sure that next year, he’ll be right there sending him signals from beside third base again.
“I’m going to move my team up and age group next year so I can continue to coach my son,” he said.
Zeke Flattmann, a Scott’s Welding player, went 2-for-3 in the game with one run.
He said he was just happy to play this year and he is already looking forward to moving up an age group next year.
“I’m kind of nervous to play with the older kids next year,” he said. “But I’m ready, too.”
Smith Printing head coach Josh Goldman said he is just as proud of his player’s efforts as the next coach.
Smith Printing finally caught some momentum and scored their only two runs within the last 20 minutes of an hour-and-a-half time limit.
“I told them to keep their heads up,” he said. “If we had played them again, we could’ve beaten them.”
The Natchez Dixie Youth does not allow coaches to pick their players, but they are redrafted every year.
With that being said, Rushing and Goldman will not ever get a chance to coach their same roster again.
Goldman said that is something he wishes we could change.
“They are a great group of kids, if I could pick the same team again I would,” Goldman said.
Rushing said he was just happy to give them some memories like he had when he played in this league as a child.
“Most of them never won a league championship before and they made some friends along the way,” he said. “I played when I was a kid, I know that it is something to remember.”