Drew Lindquist throws to first base during Augusta Little League practice Tuesday in Augusta. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

AUGUSTA — At the start of practice Tuesday evening, the Augusta Little League 12U All-Stars threw the ball around the infield, practicing some double plays.

The group looked relaxed, loose and ready to play championship baseball.

The team is two wins shy from taking the state title. Augusta plays Bangor in the winner’s bracket final Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at Clyde L. Sukeforth Field in Waldoboro.

“We’re definitely hyped,” Augusta catcher Kolton Colby said.

“I’m excited to play Bangor,” Augusta shortstop Drew Lindquist added. “They’re a good team. We’re doing great. We keep our heads in the game. Our pitching’s been great, our hitting’s been great. We’ve just got to keep it up.”

There’s two ways the team can reach the championship game Saturday. The quickest, of course, is to beat Bangor. That would send Augusta right into the final. However, should Augusta lose to Bangor, it can still reach the title game by beating the winner of the Saco/Dayton-Bonny Eagle elimination bracket semifinal game on Friday (the tournament is double elimination).


Augusta head coach Mike Karagiannes said beating Bangor puts Augusta in a better position, but the team is well-positioned regardless of its next game.

“Winning this game would be huge, because then whoever we play (Saturday in the championship game) has to beat us twice,” Karagiannes said. “I will say this, we have a great group of pitchers, so we do have some depth. That way, if we do get knocked down a little bit, (we’re OK).”

Kya Douin hits a pitch during an Augusta 12U All-Stars Little League practice iTuesday n Augusta. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

It’s been quite a ride for Augusta, which beat Lewiston 6-1 to capture the District 5 championship to enter the state tournament.

“It’s unbelievable, what a great group of kids,” Karagiannes. “As a coach, the best thing you can do is stay out of their way half the time and just let them play ball. The coaching staff has done a really great job with them and have had a lot of help. The kids have just responded. They played their guts out all through districts and now in the state tournament, too.”

Karagiannes said he’s been most impressed with how the team — comprised of the best players in Augusta Little League — have come together so quickly.

“Just the way they’ve gelled as a team,” Karagiannes said. “This has probably been said a million times, but it’s not necessarily the best team with the best players (that win), but it’s the best team. That’s what these guys have done, they’ve become a team. If one part of the team isn’t doing it, the other part of the team picks them up.”


“We always cheer each other on,” Lindquist added. “If someone strikes out, we always try to pick them up. We’ve been really nice to each other. Most of us have played with each other most of our careers. We’ve just known each other for a while, that’s part (of the success).”

Augusta 12U All-Stars catcher Kolton Colby throws to second during a Little League practice Tuesday in Augusta. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

Karagiannes said the team stays calm in pressure situations.

“The kids are just chill,” Karagiannes said. “You can tell they are excited, but they don’t get too overly excited. They stay within their lanes, I guess is a way to put it. They’re definitely not cocky. They realize they have challenges in front of them. It really is just a great group of kids.”

Augusta may be playing its best baseball right now. It hit four home runs in its most recent victory, an 8-4 decision over Saco/Dayton in the semifinal round on Sunday.

“We’re hitting a lot more dingers than we thought we were,” Colby said. “I honestly didn’t think we’d hit any, but we’ve hit six I think (during the tournament).”

“The hitting is incredible,” Lindquist added. “We’ve hit six home runs in five games. We have incredible pitching. We have five top pitchers (on the team). We just have to keep our heads in the game, but we can win.”

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