HASTINGS – The community of Hastings honored their Little League team with a celebration on Wednesday at Duncan Field. The event, celebrating the team finishing in the top eight at the Little League World Series, was highlighted by significant honors from Governor Pete Ricketts, the City of Hastings, and Hastings College.
All ten team members and the three coaches were presented an honor by Governor Pete Ricketts. While not able to attend in person, the governor recorded an audio message for the team. “As governor, one of my powers is to induct individuals who have contributed to the good life, into the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska,” Ricketts said. “In honor of your achievement, I am excited to make you all Admirals in the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska. Thanks for representing Nebraska so well.” The Admiralship is an honorary title issued by Nebraska governors for more than 90 years.
Corey Stutte, Mayor of Hastings, presented Keys to the City of Hastings to the team. “Receiving a key means that the honorees are trusted friends of the city who have earned the respect of its citizens,” said Stutte. “The City of Hastings is excited to present the Hastings Little League players and coaches with such keys, as a symbol of gratitude and respect for the hard work that went into preparing for and competing in the 2021 Little League World Series.”
In addition, Hastings College presented scholarships to each player valued at $21,000 over four years. “This team’s historic and inspiring season brought the joy of baseball and sportsmanship to Nebraskans and fans across the country. It’s a classic journey of becoming the best you can be and taking advantage of the opportunities that come your way,” said BJ Pumroy, athletic director at Hastings College. “Hastings College is a place that prides itself in helping students become the best they can be, too. Congratulations, and we hope in a few years to see you on campus as a Hastings College Bronco.”
The community celebration also included a parade of the team, the unveiling of a commemorative poster and a team autograph session. Hastings Baseball and the Hastings Community Foundation hosted the celebration.