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Opening Day

Mathews County Little League kicked off the 2024 season Saturday morning with an Opening Day ceremony at the ballfields in Hudgins. Above, Charlie Crittenden, who has been an integral part of Mathews baseball and softball for decades, threw out Saturday’s opening pitch (caught by Mathews High School softball pitcher Christiana Wood, who attended along with her teammates from last year’s Mathews LL Junior softball team that placed second in the state tournament). About 230-235 youngsters are playing in 21 teams in Mathews LL this year, ranging from T-ball and Coach Pitch to Senior Softball and Baseball, according to president Holt Ripley. Ripley’s sister Susan sang the National Anthem and the Rev. Patrick Billups delivered a prayer for the players and the coming season. Below, Rangers’ coach Jessica Ripley holds the hand of Charles Ripley as she leads the team out onto the field. For more about Mathews Little League, see


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