LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - They still have work to do but the 12 year old Lufkin All-Stars are hard at work with one goal in mind.
The team will be playing in the state tournament in Houston on Saturday night and if they can make their way through the tournament, they will move onto the regional tournament in Waco. After that they could go to the Little League World Series, which is televised live on ABC and ESPN.
The team is spending every day practicing twice a day.
"They've been hard and hot but it just keeps pushing us to be better," catcher Chandler Spencer said.
Manager Bud Maddux knows talent when he sees it and he calls this team special.
"There's some good athletes on the team," Maddux said. "We have great pitching, good defense and we can hit. I think we got a chance, but you got to win on the field."
The team has ran through sectionals on a scoring frenzy. Many times winning by the mercy rule. In one game, the boys racked up 30 runs in just two innings . That will soon change with the state tournament full of teams just like them. The team will have to take on Lamar National, Pearland East and North Shore.
"I think the competition we played is no where near what we are fixing to play," Maddux said. "They work hard but so do those players down there."
The players on the team have been together for years and many of them played T-ball together. The team believes they are more like family.
"We have a bond," pitcher Hunter Ditsworth said. "We are able to talk to each other and tell them anything."
Knowing what they are running into, the coaches are looking to the defense know if they want to go all the way, and so far the team, of 12 year-olds, is buying into the philosophy.
"Coach Bud has been working us hard but it has paid off," second baseman Malcolm Deason said. "It's been hot but we just have to work through it. They said we can't be potty about it. We just have to do our best and work hard."
The team will play at 8 pm on Saturday at the West University South Campus. They will also play on Sunday and if they go undefeated they will be able to get advance to the championship without playing in the elimination game on Monday.