Six local Little League baseball and softball teams are playing in state tournaments this weekend, including three in the Bi-City area.
Northern's 9-10 and 11-12 softball teams are vying for state championships at Pioneer Little League (Britt David Park).
Meanwhile, Phenix City is hosting the Alabama major baseball state tournament at Idle Hour Park. That tournament got under way Friday night. Phenix City plays the winner of Huntsville-Eastern and South Monroe at 6 p.m. Saturday night.
Back in Georgia, The Pioneer senior softball team begins play at noon Saturday against West Point in Athens.
The American 9-10 baseball team faces Smyrna at 3;30 p.m. Saturday at Franklin County Little League in Carnesville.
Northern's 10-11 baseball team, which just won its District 8 title on Thursday, completes a short turnaround by playing Martinez-Evans at 3 p.m. Saturday in Peachtree City.
Northern hit eight home runs in the five District 8 games and had an ERA of just 1.24.
The Northern 11-12 baseball team gets a week off before it heads to Richmond Hill for the major baseball state tournament.
The Northern 11-12 softball team opens the state tournament at Pioneer at 11 a.m. Saturday with a game against Elbert County.
Northern fought its way through the losers bracket to win the District 8 tournament.
"It meant a lot cause it was important to the girls," coach Bob Hinton said. "It showed what they can accomplish if they play as a team."
Hinton said playing locally means a lot more practice time for his team.
"The girls are comfortable with the field," Hinton said. "They have played there before, and more fans will be able to come see them play.
Pioneer league president Rick Chadwick said Pioneer and Columbus tries to put on the best show possible for the teams in the two state tournaments. That included a banquet for all the teams on Friday night.
"We have a lot of support from local business that gave us door prizes for the banquet to gift cards and a team hot dog party," Chadwick said.
The Northern 9-10 softball team gets another day off as it will play its first game at
1 p.m. Sunday against Bartow County.
Parking at Pioneer will be $5.
The Northern major softball team includes Jordan Bagsby, JoElla Crowell, Emily Davis, Kamdyn Fuller, Olivia Hinton, Haley Johnson, Alexis McFolley, Zoe Paul, Kennedy Polhamus, Alexis Sibold, Matti Trask and Alice Williams. The manager is Bob Hinton, and the coaches are Greg Paul and Tony Polhamus.
The Northern 9-10 softball team includes Madison Hanson, Karlee Fuller, Avery Sconyers, Christine Vaughn, Aeryn Touchberry, Olivia Trimiar, McKenzie Hatfield, Alkexis Day, Riley Ingram, Ireland Cavanaugh and Savannah Sibold. The manager is Larry Carver, and the coaches are Steve Vaughn and Roy Sibold.
The Northern 10-11 baseball team includes Mitchell Duncan, Tyler Elrod, Brent Epps, Zachary Garcia, Will Graydon, Mitchell Harp, Colton Joyner, Garrett Justice, Austin Ledford, Walt McConnell, John Runyon, Jagger Smith and Tyler Watkins. The manager is John Runyon, and the coaches are Walt McConnell and Michael Graydon.
The Northern 11-12 baseball team includes Colby Brabston, Parker Brabston, Joseph Crowell, Josh Evans, Zachary Foster, Trenton Grantham, Tyler Hanson, Austin Hicks, Noah Lee, Cole Pettis, Anna Runyon, Benjamin Sloan and Anthony Torres. The manager is Randy Morris, and the coaches are Donnie Coulter and Cam Willis.
The roster for the Pioneer senior softball team and the American 9-10 baseball teams were not available.