President, First Lady Congratulate Little League Softball World Series Champs
WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (Oct. 14, 2008) – President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush met with members of the Simpsonville (S.C.) Little League – champions of the 2008 Little League Softball World Series – during a recent stop in Charleston, S.C.
In the world championship game this past August at the Alpenrose Dairy Farm in Portland, Ore., Simpsonville Little League defeated Robbinsville (N.J.) Little League, 9-5.
In a recent news article that appeared in the Greenville (S.C.) News some of the players described what it meant to them to meet the President of the United States …
"It was such an honor," said Erin Errington, 12, a left fielder. "I would never think we would be able to do something like that. It was just an amazing opportunity, shaking his hand and going on Air Force One."
Sarah Stewart, 13, pitcher and third baseman, said that when Mr. Bush left Air Force One, he started waving at them. "That was truly amazing," Stewart said.
"All of us thought it was really cool that we got to do more in the summer than most people get to do their whole lives," said Nikki Fulmer, 13, center fielder.
Coach Don Davis said the experience was unbelievable. "This was just the most awesome thing you would ever want to witness," he said. "The girls were just in awe with him."
During their visit, the team presented Mr. Bush with a personalized Little League Softball World Series jacket, a plaque with an autographed ball, and a hat. The first lady received a game jersey with “Miss Laura” on the back.
For various winners of Little League’s several World Series tournaments to meet with the President following a world championship is a tradition that goes back to the Dwight D. Eisenhower administration.
Representing the Southern Region, Simpsonville Little League set the tone for its World Series-winning performance by ending every practice by doing push ups and chanting “World Series, Portland, Oregon.” The victory was the first for any South Carolina team in any Softball division of Little League.
Simpsonville Little League defeated Latin America Region champion, ASOFEM Little League from Maunabo, Puerto Rico, 7-6 in the semifinal game. Robbinsville Little League reached the final game by shutting out Sterling (Ill.) Little League, 1-0.