Softball Little League tourney gets going on fresh grass

Over the next four days some of the best little league softball players from around the Southeast will compete in Warner Robins.
At stake is a chance to move on to the World Series in Portland.

Cheryl Miller is no greenhorn when it comes to grass. She can rattle off the name of every blade.

"It's Bermuda grass 419, a hybrid, and behind the plate we have tift grand which is more suitable for shade," she explained.

Miller winds up pulling extra innings during the tournament.

"I come in and mow every morning, still fertilizing and edging every day, just trying to make it look nice,"she said.

It didn't look that nice just a few weeks back.
For the first time in the complex's four year history they've aerated the greenery.

"Basically punch a bunch of holes into the ground and fill it with sand, Miller said. It looks good. I wish it was rooted a little bit over but we did top dressing and it makes for a nice comfortable surface and its good for the roots and everything."

Anna Riggleman is from West Virginia and after her time in the batters box she will prowl the outfield, so grass is a big deal for her.

"At first I thought it was real grass and then I thought it was turf then I just couldn't tell so I rushed down there and felt it," Anna said. "It felt like real grass."

In a game where emotions can turn on a dime the grass is only an issue if there is a problem.
And that's okay, because kids have a way of showing their gratitude.

"You know all the hard work and all the long hours you put into it, it's so worth it when you see these kids come up and they say 'Wow!'"

The road to Portland for the Little League Championships got a touch easier this year. Alabama did not send a team. Organizers said their numbers were low, they just didn't have the kids. But for the teams that are here they are fantastic and don't forget every game is absolutely free to come out and soak up all of the excitement in the stands.


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