In 1979, the Gainesville American Legion Post 7 baseball squad was one of the best in the nation.
Following a state title and Southeast Regional crown, Post 7 made the World Series, held Aug. 30-Sept. 3 in Greenville, Mississippi.
This weekend, Times sports editor Bill Murphy will feature the squad from 41 years ago with tales from its affable coach, Don Brewer, and a number of their players.
Post 7 players remember vividly the crowds that would gather, well into the hundreds, for those hot summer night games at the field where the Gainesville High softball program now calls home.
Gainesville was a squad without any superstars, but was well-represented by the top players in Hall County and surrounding counties during an age when the baseball talent was robust in northeast Georgia.
Post 7 had a pair of pitchers, Gary House and David Coker, who handled most of the work on the mound.
At the plate, Gainesville’s American Legion ball club had seven batters finish the 1979 season with an average above .300, led by shortstop Scott Powers (.399 average), who went on to play at Clemson University and seven years of minor league baseball.
The Southeast Regional was a grind for Gainesville after dropping the first game against Puerto Rico.
However, Gainesville rebounded with four straight wins, including a two-game sweep of Hamlet, North Carolina to punch its World Series ticket.
Players recount the dramatic final out and the celebration that ensued.