Last night in Waco, Wylie Little League baseball team pulled out a 4-3 win against Louisiana as they made their first appearance in the Little League Southwest Region Tournament. Often times, watching the game can be more nerve-racking than actually playing the game. Fans are charged with emotions, but not more than that of a mother whose heart is on the field. According to the commentators, this game had “the feeling of being a championship game” despite it being the first game of the tournament for both teams. Wylie played into overtime, grabbing the win when Ceddrick Lara stole home on a wild pitch. Mona Lara, Ceddrick’s mom, said the excitement was overwhelming.
“I had to go to car twice!” Lara said. “It was so nerve racking – cameras in your face and the winner’s bracket or loser’s bracket at stake!
Myles McCarty easily pitched his limit of 85 pitches with 11 strike outs. Rayna McCarty, his mom, said as she listened back over the game today, she heard the commentators comparing Myles pitching last night to when he pitched in the Little League World Series last year.
“As moms we hear the reports and see posts on social media,” said McCarty. “It’s fun, but I’m thankful the boys aren’t really following the media and just having fun and doing what they love.”
Jodie Tuley appeared calm when her son Easton was called on to close the game with two runners on base and no outs in the bottom of the 6th inning. While Easton had been playing left field, stepping onto the mound elevates the emotions. Tuley said she was thankful she looked calm, but was full of nerves and confidence at the same time.
“I was so nervous for him; all the while believing in him and this team,” said Tuley. “Such a range of emotions, but as mom, I just felt the weight of the pressure he had on his shoulders. Easton had the opportunity to step up for his team, and he was ready…it showed in his poise and confidence.”
Adrienne Ruffin, mom of Kannon Ruffin, said the emotions are high.
“You get a little choked up seeing your kid on the field and pray he shows the ability God blessed him with,” said Ruffin. “I got super nervous when Kannon went up to bat…prayed he would get a hit and not strike out.”
With emotions high for all the moms in the stands, Kendall Harrison’s were especially elevated for her and son Ryder when he batted for the first time in over six weeks, which was due to having a broken growth plate. Harrison said Ryder’s emotions on first base were a “culmination of emotions” released when he hit the ball at his first bat since being held back from his injury.
“I did not know the both of us would get so emotional from his first hit after being released Monday!” Harrison said. “I cried, he cried on 1st base and then he tipped his hat to us in the stands.”
Another night of high emotions is in store as Wylie plays Oklahoma at 7 p.m. tonight on the Longhorn Network. Good luck to all the Wylie players! We are watching with pride as we cheer you all on!
By Kristen Johnson