JONES COUNTY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - The Jones County 49ers, a group of 12 nine and ten-year-olds, are getting the opportunity of a lifetime.
"We headin' to the World Series," says Charles Smith III, a member of the team.
The 49ers advanced to play in the USSSA World Series in Mandeville, Louisiana, after winning the Division II state championship.
The team arrived on Tuesday and participated in a parade and pinning ceremony for all the teams involved.
Baseball started Wednesday with pool play games, which set up the 14-team double elimination tournament that started today.
"I'm expecting some competition," says Smith III.
"It's gonna be a struggle to get there," says Brandon Cox, the team's head coach. "It's gonna be a lot of good teams to have to go through. Hopefully the good Lord will be with us and carry us through it."
The team has put in over 100 hours in preparation for the state championship and World Series.
"We've been batting, fielding, pitching, catching," says Ethan Cox, a member of the team. "We've been mostly working on our catching."
"I know it sounds a lot on the kids but that's what it takes to compete with the teams that we're going to be competing against," says Brandon Cox.
Cox says although the team wants to bring home a World Series title to Jones County, winning isn't everything.
"We're not going to have any bad moments," he says. "Even if we're down, even if we're losing. My boys, one thing I will say about them: they always hold their heads high, so as long as you give 150% and you play with your heart, they know that's all we ask for."
As for the players themselves, the sky is the limit.
"If our team plays the hardest, we can probably win," says Ethan Cox.
"This my first time going to the World Series, and I'll be ready," says Smith.
The 49ers won their first game, 19-2, against a team from Louisiana, before losing the second game of the day, 7-5, to a team from Mississippi.
The 49ers were ousted from the tournament with a loss in the losers' bracket on Friday morning.