Tarrant County

Undefeated Texas Little League team removed from tournament with no explanation

The coaches and players fear they won too many games

NBC Universal, Inc.

Update: Local Little League president says he was pressured to remove an undefeated team from a tournament and an investigation is needed. Read the latest on this story here.

It's called a Field of Dreams, and a group of 12-year-old boys from Tarrant County were on it.

"It was all of our dreams to play in the Little League World Series," said Cooper Neumann.

"I've watched it for three straight years. And I was like, 'Dad, can I try it? Can we try to play in that?'" said Harrison Harper.

The season went well, really well, with the boys winning every single game they played. Their parents said that was the problem.

"The allegations, complaint, started that our team, I guess, was too good," said Greg Harper, the boy's coach.

The team was accused of playing together before, or that the boys were too old or didn't live in the required area ... all things the parents said they proved weren't true.

"Water bills and all kinds of things that you have to bring to substantiate your residency, and we took care of that as well," said Cyle Brossman, assistant coach.

They thought it was over, but then the complaints went to the Little League International Office in Pennsylvania. Those guys called the league president here in Texas and at the end of that call, the league president agreed to kick this undefeated team out of the league with no real explanation for why.

"We said, 'Just give us an allegation. Give us a reason why our kids were removed.' They said it's not our fault, we didn't do anything. You need to talk to your league president. He's the one that voluntarily removed you guys," said Harper.

The president didn't answer calls from NBC 5 for an explanation, but in a letter and conversations with parents, he said he was given an ultimatum to choose between removing this team or kicking them all out.

"Just to have someone strip that away from you, for no reason, no reason at all. I mean, we have wrote emails, phone calls, no explanation whatsoever," said Michelle Peluso, a parent.

We reached out to Little League International, who released the following statement:

"A protest was filed with the Little League International Tournament Committee by another league participating in the Texas District 7 Tournament. As the role of the Tournament Committee is to review situations that arise at all levels of the tournament and ensure Little League rules, regulations, and policies have been implemented, the Tournament Committee reviewed the information provided in the protest, and subsequently discussed it directly with the League President, after which the Fossil Creek Little League team in question voluntarily withdrew from the Tournament. This withdrawal was accepted by the Tournament Committee and the Texas District 7 Little League Baseball tournament proceeded on June 19, 2024, without the withdrawn team. As such, Little League International considers this matter closed"

"Little League, on their own website talks about their their mantra or their motto, 'I will play fair.' Well, this doesn't seem very fair, and to not have an answer doesn't seem very fair," said Peluso.

If a rule was broken, the parents and players said they didn't know what it was. It's all a life lesson for these boys, who will be too old to play again next year.

"I was disappointed. Yeah. It's been pretty cool to play on TV in front of a lot of people," said Nicholas Brossman.

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