by Rodger M. Wood
The Sterling boys who thrilled Sterling, Loudoun County and the Washington Metropolitan Area with their winning exploits the Summer of 1974 are coming home to roost in their laurels.
Friends, fans, supporters, coaches, and players are all invited to remininse with them at a 40th year reunion, 8 -12 PM, Friday, April 25th at O’Malley’s Pub, Sterling Holiday Inn, 45425 Holiday Drive, Sterling VA 20166.
The next day, the team will be honored at a special opening day ceremony at the Little League Field at the Sterling Golf and Tennis Course, 8:30 AM, Saturday, April 26th and all are invited to attend that gala affair too.
Starting in early July, 1974 and lasting to late August, these fifteen, then 14 and 15 year old Sterling VA Lower Loudoun Little League Senior Division baseball players, won 6 straight ball games against long odds and established senior division little league teams from the Shenadoah Valley, Norfolk, Richmond, and North Springfield to win district and State of Virginia championships.
Not ending their winning streak there, they traveled on by airplane to Louisville, KY to beat the odds again by defeating strong State of West Virginia and Kentucky State Champions in a 3-game series to win a Division title.
With no time to lose because of rainouts, they flew out of Louisville after the last game to Atlanta GA, then rode an old rickoty school bus to a little hamlet 20 miles northwest of Athens GA, called Elberton GA where they beat a mighty state of Texas champion but lost twice to a strong Florida team out of Tampa that went on to the National World Series in Gary IND.
Newspaper headlines and articles in the Loudoun Times Mirror, Washington Post, and Evening Star touted the feats of these boys.
Crowds heralded them at “ticker tape” parades and ceremonies twice at Bill Allen Field upon their return from the state and regional tournaments.
The Loudoun Board of Supervisors recognized their outstanding sportsmanship in a proclamation they presented to them at a special session in Leesburg.
These boys who were special in many ways on and off the diamond are coming back home after forty years to enjoy their fields of dreams. The Sterling Community would do well to celebrate their return and special goodness all over again.
1974 Lower Loudoun Little League, Senior Division Roster
Manager: Ben Anch
Bench Coach: Rodger M. Wood
Coach: Hubert Goode
Pitching Coach: Dan Fritz
Coach: Tommy Thompson
Danny Fritz (dec.)
Curt Sieber (dec.)