PORTLAND – Sterling All-Star Kylie Powers is sporting a whole new look these days, and it’s all because of Little League Softball.
When the postseason started about a month ago, Powers decided to put a braid in her hair for each Sterling win. Her mother, Katy Fullmer, performs that duty each day, and it now takes her about 1 1/2 hours to complete the job.
“Nothing’s really hard about it,” Fullmer said. “I went to beauty school, so it makes it easy for me. I just do the same design and keep adding one to her hair somewhere.”
If Sterling were to win a championship, Powers would be sporting 19 braids in her hair. She noted it’s been quite an attention-getter as the postseason has worn on.
“It’s been spreading throughout our hotel pretty much this whole time,” Powers said. “I’m just like, ‘Wow, word gets around fast.’ Other players, umpires and fans are talking about it.”
And they danced: When the top of the fourth inning of each World Series game rolls around, there is an enjoyable, at least for some people, activity down the first base line.
Rose, a young girl in Swedish maiden garb and the mascot for Alpenrose Dairy, host site of the Little League Softball World Series, comes on the field to dance to a song blaring from the loudspeakers. Each game she has been joined by the entire Sterling team, while their first three opponents were dugout-bound.
On Thursday, it was the Chicken Dance during a 2-0 win over Waco, Texas. On Friday, it was the Macarena in a 15-1 win over Latin America. On Sunday, it was the YMCA in a 7-2 win over Westchester, Calif.
Properly motivated, Sterling scored at least one run in each of the fourth innings, outscoring their first three opponents a combined 7-0.
“After you start doing it, it really loosens you up and you get more excited about the game,” Sterling’s Erin Stroup said.
In Monday’s game against Canada, Rose didn’t come onto the field until the bottom of the fourth inning, after Sterling had scored three runs to take a 14-1 lead. The song of choice was the Chicken Dance, and the Canadian team emerged from their dugout to dance as well.
Near the end, the Sterling girls sprinted across the diamond to join the Canadian players and coaches in one big Chicken Dance-off.
Birthday girl: Sterling first baseman-outfielder Erin Stroup turned 13 on Monday and was serenaded with a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday before the game.
It was a big day for the Stroups in more ways than one. Her mother, Becky, won the 50/50 raffle and a $50 prize.