BRISTOL – People from all over the East Coast united at the Giamatti Stadium for the Little League Mid-Atlantic Championship.
Officials with the Little League said every year, this brings thousands of people to the city. Fairfield took home the win at the New England Regional Finals and there were over 4,000 people at the game which was a great boost to Bristol’s economy.
“It didn’t matter how long it was. We were going to be here,” said Denise Etzler of Maryland.
From Thurmont, Maryland to Bristol, Connecticut, the Etzler family drove three hours to root on their team.
It was a first for her husband, Ron as he joined the family in blue attire.
“It gives you a lot of pride to have your small little town be part of something so big,” said Ron Etzler of Maryland.
Denise said she went to a previous game in Rhode Island a couple of years ago.
“I didn’t have a kid on the team, but I was player agent for the local league and I watched them win districts, I watched them win states and I couldn’t wait to watch them win regions,” added Denise.
“We have people come from all different states, cities, different teams come out to support other teams,” said Amry Shelby, Assistant Regional Director of East Region for Little League Baseball and Softball.
For people like Andre Clements, he said it was his first time and he said the trip from New Jersey was well worth it.
“Just seeing their response, their reaction, used to play the sport and coach the sport and just kind of see how they’re taking it,” said Clements of New Jersey.
This was a week-long tournament as 12 states stayed in Bristol to compete for the Little League World Series. Fairfield played South Portland, Maine earlier in the day as Connecticut took the lead in the third and fourth inning.
“It’s a big deal. It’s huge. Like I said, it’s 4,500 people today at the first game. They got to eat, they got to have a place to sleep,” added Shelby.
Fairfield will be back in action on August 17th when they play in the Little League World Series in Williamsport Pennsylvania and a team from New Jersey won the Mid-Atlantic Finals.