For Little Majors, It's On To State

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As the first Rim country baseball team to qualify for the Arizona State Little League Tournament, the Payson Major Division (11-12-years-old) All-Stars have etched their names in the record books.

The team earned the prestigious berth by winning the Area 1 and District 1 LL Tournaments held last week in Flagstaff and Show Low.

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Members of the Payson Little League Major Division All-Star team proudly display the banner the team received for winning the Arizona District 1 championship. The team opens play in the state tournament at 9 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday) in Gilbert.

The team debuts in the 13-team Arizona State tournament at 9 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday) at Crossroads Park in Gilbert against the District 8 Little League champions. Crossroads Park is at 2155 E. Knox Road. The District 8 champion had not yet been determined Wednesday.

In the state tournament format, the qualifiers play in two pools of round robins that wrap up July 26.

Payson is aligned in the seven-team Pool B with champions from districts 3, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11.

At the conclusion of the round robins, the No. 1 seed (team with the best won-lost record) from Pool A will play the No. 2 seed from Pool B. In the opposite semifinal tournament bracket, the No. 1 seed from Pool B takes on Pool A's No. 2 seed. The winners of those clashes meet at 7 p.m. July 30 for the state championship.

In addition to tomorrow's tournament opener, Payson is slated for pool games at 7:30 p.m., July 21 vs. District 11, 5:30 p.m., July 22 vs District 3, 5:30 p.m., July 24 vs. District 9, 7:30 p.m., July 25 vs. District 10 and 7:30 p.m., July 26 vs. District 7. All tournament games are at Crossroads.

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