Advanced Sports travels to World Series

Published 12:01 am Saturday, June 14, 2014

Vidalia — The Advanced Sports Braves baseball team is ending a stellar season with its second appearance at the Grand Slam World Series in Panama City Beach, Fla.

The 11 and under summer league team will leave for Florida Sunday to play at 8 a.m. Wednesday against the Elite Gamers of McDonough, Ga.

Braves head coach Shaun McDonald said he sees the early start as a good thing.

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“We actually haven’t played that early this season, but the advantage would be getting away from the heat,” he said.

The Braves have more than one advantage going into the World Series. They gave themselves nearly a month of focusing on practice instead of playing so they could sharpen their fundamentals.

Even a few special guests showed up to their practices.

“We brought in (Adams County Christian School athletes) RJ Fleming and Matthew Freeman to help with speed and agility drills and work on pitching, hitting and defense,” McDonald said. “We’re just practicing a little harder than we usually do,”

McDonald said he feels his players are ready for the big stage.

“We’re keeping the kids pumped up to play the same type of baseball we have played all year,” he said.

The Braves have won four tournament championships, two runner-ups and have an overall 4-2 record at the World Series.

McDonald said those accolades come from his players knowing the concept of teamwork.

“All year we have focused on team work and playing as a team, and that’s what its going to take to be successful,” he said. “We achieved our goal of being No. 1 in the state, but going into this weekend, we’re focusing on winning the World Series.”