By Danny P. Smith
Starkville Daily News
The Mathiston Mad Dawgs may not have walked away with the first-place trophy at the 8-year-old Dizzy Dean South State Tournament, but gained respect from all who watched them play.
After losing a tough 3-2 decision to Starkville Americans on July 7, the Mad Dawgs battled their way back to the championship game and earned a rematch.
Mathiston lost to Starkville again 11-6 on July 9, but coach Ken Norwood was proud of the way his squad competed.
“I’m extremely proud of each every one of these kids,” Norwood said. “We’ve battled, got down and came back. These kids have shown more character for 8-year-olds than a lot of grownups do. I’m proud of what they have accomplished within themselves more than what they’ve done on the field. No. 2 in the state is not bad.”
The Mad Dawgs defeated Starkville National 18-3 to open the tournament on July 6, then topped West Point 14-6 later in the day.
Mathiston had to win three games on July 8 and did just that by beating Louisville 12-3, Ackerman 13-9 and Caledonia 9-6.
The members of the Mad Dawgs are Judd Azlin, Eli Bigham, Mason Brand, Ethan Chesser, Hayes Fason, Logan Johnson, Briceton Johnson, Cade Morrow, Carson Norwood, John Preston Springer and Ethan Williams. Assisting Norwood were coaches Darrell Fason, Field Johnson and Bill Morrow.
The team is competing in the Dizzy Dean Baseball World Series in Southaven beginning today.