Iron Birds post runner-up effort in state tournament

from staff reports

  The Elizabethton Boys and Girls Club's 2004 Little Debbie Snack Cake Iron Birds came home with a state runner-up finish in the Cal Ripken Tennessee State Tee-Ball Championship tournament, hosted by Avoca Youth Baseball, in Bristol last weekend.
  After losing their opening-round game on Friday evening, the Iron Birds reeled off four straight victories, including an extra-inning victory against the previously unbeaten Physical Therapy Service Mets from Elizabethton.
  The Iron Birds played two games on Saturday and finished up the weekend by playing three times on Sunday. Tired and hungry, these five, six and seven-year-old youngsters showed heart and determination during their final game on Sunday, which started at 6 p.m.
  The Iron Birds worked hard in the finale, but fell just short of victory (17-16) to the J.C. Bombers.
  As Nathan Norris stated, "If we would have had fresh legs, I think we could have taken those guys."
  In spite of the closing defeat, Elizabethton was done proud by the Iron Birds, second in the state.
  The Iron Bird coaches -- Tony Garland, Roger Norris, Danny McClain and Blair Henley -- express thanks to all the Iron Birds and parents for an unbelievable tournament.