https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sports/rss.xml en 11-year-olds claim district title https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/11-year-olds-claim-district-title <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/u11_littleleague_071118_039_copy.jpg" alt="Washington County’s 11-year-old All-Stars shut out Adair County during last week’s game at Graham Memorial Park in Lebanon to claim the district championship. The team will play in the state tournament later this week." title="Washington County’s 11-year-old All-Stars shut out Adair County during last week’s game at Graham Memorial Park in Lebanon to claim the district championship. The team will play in the state tournament later this week." align="left" hspace="6" /><p> Twice the Washington County 11-year-old&nbsp; All-Stars were matched up against Adair County, and twice they came away victorious.</p> <p> In the first meeting, Adair County looked much more dangerous. After going up 3-0 in the first two innings, Washington County&rsquo;s All-Stars roared back into the game by scoring seven unanswered runs across three innings and winning the game 7-3.</p> All-Stars in district tourney action https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/all-stars-district-tourney-action <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/img_0919.jpg" alt="Andrew Mackin came on in relief and struck out five of the six final outs of the game for Washington County in the District 5 Little League All-Star tournament opener Saturday." title="Andrew Mackin came on in relief and struck out five of the six final outs of the game for Washington County in the District 5 Little League All-Star tournament opener Saturday." align="left" hspace="6" width="142" height="85" /><h1> 11-year-olds win 8-0 over Boyle</h1> <p> It was a baseball game, but it looked more like a game of catch between Lance Coulter and Dylan Mattingly.<br /> Coulter struck out 11 of the 12 outs in his four innings of work, as he continued to throw the ball past Boyle County batters, only to have Mattingly toss it back to him to do it all over again.<br /> Boyle County collected just one hit and one base on balls against Coulter and failed to score a run.<br /> Out of the dark https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/out-dark <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/img_9259_0.jpg" alt="A crew works to bring down the old light poles at Idle Hour Park." title="A crew works to bring down the old light poles at Idle Hour Park." align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> Washington County&nbsp; High School baseball will step out of the (literal) dark ages next season, as the plans for new lights on the high school field were finally able to get underway.<br /> The lights at the Commander ball field had been in operation since Idle Hour Park first opened in 1976. Judy Spalding, the Director of Finance and Business for Washington County Schools, says that the school was first notified that the lights were experiencing problems in 2015.<br /> World What? https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/world-what-2 <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/fauzan-saari-687562-unsplash_1_0.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="151" height="85" /><p> Nearly two weeks into the tournament, the group stage is coming to a close. Some teams have locked up spots in the next round, while others have already been mathematically eliminated. The opening round has been filled with drama and plenty of unpredictability, so let&rsquo;s take a look at the biggest storylines so far.<br /> <br /> <strong>Giants fall</strong><br /> Youth football pipeline helps grow high school program https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/youth-football-pipeline-helps-grow-high-school-program <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/football_practice_0618_001.jpg" alt="Members of the WCHS football team that played in the Washington County Youth Football League pose for a picture during a preseason practice." title="Members of the WCHS football team that played in the Washington County Youth Football League pose for a picture during a preseason practice." align="left" hspace="6" width="127" height="85" /><p> There&rsquo;s a long-term vision for Washington County football. Now, after close to a decade of tweaks and improvements, a system is taking shape that will help guide kids from the first time they put on pads, all the way up to when they graduate high school.<br /> &nbsp;&ldquo;That&rsquo;s what our end-all goal is,&rdquo; said Washington County head football coach Eric Sagrecy. &ldquo;To have everything under one umbrella so that we were all an extension of each other and we were all working towards the same things.&rdquo;<br /> Growing the league https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/growing-league <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/grow_up.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="93" height="85" /><p> This year will mark the 10th anniversary of youth football in Washington County, a project that has made strides in growing the county&rsquo;s football pedigree.<br /> Before the league&rsquo;s start, youth football options were limited.<br /> &ldquo;You didn&rsquo;t play until you got to middle school,&rdquo; says John Graves, one of the league&rsquo;s current administrators. &ldquo;You look at Danville and Boyle County and all these other programs that do really well [on the high school level] and they&rsquo;ve got an established youth football program.&rdquo;<br /> World What? https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/world-what-1 <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/fauzan-saari-687562-unsplash_1.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="151" height="85" /><p> Last week we broke down the first four groups of the tournament. This week we&rsquo;ll look at the second set of teams and see who has the best chance of raising the trophy on July 14.<br /> <br /> <strong>Group E</strong><br /> <em>Brazil, Switzerland,<br /> Costa Rica, Serbia</em><br /> World What? https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/content/world-what-0 <img src="https://www.thespringfieldsun.com/sites/www.thespringfieldsun.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/fauzan-saari-687562-unsplash_0.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="151" height="85" /><p> Last week we looked at what exactly was going down in Russia this summer and how a four-year long process will eventually culminate in crowning the best soccer team on the planet.<br /> The tournament&rsquo;s 32 teams are divided up into eight groups. After three games, the top two finishers in each group advance into the knockout rounds.<br /> This week will rundown the big names of 16 teams in the tournament and who is going to be making headlines and dominating news feeds.<br /> <br /> <strong>Group A</strong><br /> <em>Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay</em><br />