FAZIO

The Covington News - - Lo­cal -

curs at least an­nu­ally in Cov­ing­ton was jaw­drop­ping to this first­time viewer, as it brought me back — as corny as it sounds — to a time when peo­ple didn’t have to worry about the strug­gling econ­omy, the lat­est Twit­ter trends, re­tire­ment plans or traf­fic.

An­other fea­ture of the open­ing cer­e­mony brought out the ca­ma­raderie be­tween team­mates along with teams min­gling among oth­ers from each of the 11 rep­re­sented states.

I re­mem­bered back to soc­cer and bas­ket­ball tour­na­ments I par­tic­i­pated in when, when you were older, you got to meet some of the best play­ers in the state or coun­try. One of the last bas­ket­ball tour­na­ments I was in, I re­mem­bered im­me­di­ately notic­ing play­ers who I knew were the best from their area and later saw them star­ring in col­lege. When I was younger, each team­mate would be ea­ger to play a new team in that par­tic­u­lar tour­na­ment to see where they were from and add their patch to our col­lec­tions.

And this is ex­actly what is hap­pen­ing at the Dixie Boys World Se­ries.

There are no patches be­ing ex­changed, but play­ers from New­ton County are get­ting to see stars from North Carolina, South Carolina, Vir­ginia, Alabama and so on. It’s some­thing they will re­mem­ber and keep track of through­out the MLB draft in four or five years.

Many of the play­ers who may one day adorn a ma­jor league ros­ter could be one of the sev­eral pitch­ers lead­ing their teams at City Pond Park.

Ev­ery time the MLB play­offs come around, you con­stantly hear how pitch­ing is key.

Heck, the Braves have 14 divi­sional ban­ners thanks to the arms of Greg Mad­dox, Tom Glavine and John Smoltz. And it’s plain to see that at ev­ery level of base­ball, the adage about pitch­ing holds true. The top teams go­ing through the bracket at the Dixie Boys World Se­ries are do­ing it be­hind pitch­ing. Texas shut down New­ton County be­hind the daz­zling per­for­mance of pitcher Chris Booth.

And New­ton was mak­ing its way back through the elim­i­na­tion bracket thanks what I feel is the deep­est ro­ta­tion in the 2012 World Se­ries. As the event en­ters its fi­nal days with the cham­pi­onship slated for to­day at the ear­li­est, it’s nice to see that things stay true in big-time tour­na­ments.

The tried-and-true keys, such as pitch­ing in base­ball, never change; sports are still a great venue for ca­ma­raderie and there’s noth­ing as Amer­i­can be­sides ap­ple pie than Amer­ica’s fa­vorite pas­time — base­ball.

An­thony Banks /The Cov­ing­ton News

Austin Tay­lor throws a pitch dur­ing New­ton County's open­ing game against Texas on Sun­day. New­ton County lost 4-1 but fought back to reach the semi­fi­nals.

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