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Vero Beach 10 and under Little Leaguers win city's first state championship in 26 years

Team advances to Southeast Regionals in North Carolina
Posted at 6:02 PM, Jul 09, 2024

VERO BEACH, Fla. — Big dreams are playing out on the Little League fields of Vero Beach.

A stand-out group of 9- and 10-year-old baseball players are living the best summer of their young lives.

The 10 and under Vero Beach All-Stars are comprised of 12 young ball players that are exceeded expectations.

"At the start of the season, honestly, I didn't think we would win districts," utility player Janxiel Gallagarza said.

"We started out with the District 17 tournament," George Williams, the team's head coach, said. "We played six games in pool, and they went five and one. Then they advanced to the best of three series."

"Towards the end, we started winning," Gallagarzaz said.

The all-stars have won every tournament they've played in, including defeating teams from Lake Mary and Naples.

Janxiel Gallagarza explains how winning the state title exceeded his expectations.
Janxiel Gallagarza explains how winning the state title exceeded his expectations.

Before they knew it, they took home a state title.

"It was really fun winning state," utility player Grady Williams said. "It made history for Vero Beach."

It had been 26 years since a Vero Beach Little League team won a state title.

"In the championship game, I think we were down 2-0, came back, tied it up going into the sixth [inning] if I'm not mistaken," Williams said. "From there, we scored two runs in the top of the 6th and ended up winning 7-5."

Heach coach George Williams discusses how the team was able to take the state title and bring the trophy home to Vero Beach.
Heach coach George Williams discusses how the team was able to take the state title and bring the trophy home to Vero Beach.

"It was really fun. The season we've played, it was challenging but fun," Grady Williams said.

As the new kings of Florida baseball, these Little Leaguers will now turn their attention to North Carolina for the southeast regional tournament.

"I, for real, will just brag about it," Gallagarza said. "It's just an accomplishment that hasn't been done in years."