In the District 10 Tournament of Champions, the C.J. Fulmer Post Little League team from Waterville fell behind 2-0 after the first inning.
“I thought, that hasn’t happened to us yet all season,’’ recalled team manager Larry Stern of Waterville. “How would the boys react?’’
The dozen players reacted as they had all season, and would continue till the end. Fulmer Post won that game, went on to win the New York District 10 championship and finished the season 21-0.
Those 12 players, then all 9 to 12 years old, are 25 years older, but their record remains one of two with the Waterville Legion team to unbeaten. Before the 1995 team went 21 and out, the 1970 team also went through the regular season and playoffs without a loss.
Under the then-rules for Little League, boys had up to four years to play at that level. That meant, said Stern, each year teams started with a new group of kids.
“You never had a whole group coming back,’’ he said. “Each year you lost four or five who went up to Senior League or modified, and you’d get four or five new young kids.’’
In 1993 and 1994, Stern’s Legion team found success, coming close to qualifying for the championship games. That Tournament of Champions featured eight teams from Mohawk Valley Little Leagues in a double elimination tournament to crown the best of the best.
Soon after practices began in the spring for the 1995 team, Stern said he and coaches Jeff Mortelette and Doug Potter saw a difference. Although with some new kids added, the…