ORANGE COUNTY- The Central Vermont Cal Ripken Little League baseball team is headed to the World Series.

“Well I can tell you that it’s never been done before that a Vermont team has made it to the World Series, said one of the teams’ three coaches Tim Gershon. “We knew from the moment that we had tryouts that we were working with a bunch of really talented players.”

Not to be confused with the annual Little League World Series played in Williamsport, this one is exclusively for Cal Ripken teams and this year it is being held in Waterville, Maine in early August.

“These kids are going to get together and have a good time. It’s a vacation with all your friends, what more can you ask for?” said coach, Lee Lawrence.

The team punched its ticket in mid-July after sweeping the regionals tournament in Burlington, MA.

“We went down to regionals to play teams that were coming from towns six or seven times the size of all of our towns combined,” said Gershon. “When we won that first game, that’s when I’d say I first started to realize that this team had the potential to get to the World Series.”

But bussing over a dozen kids with coaches and parents across state lines for ten days isn’t cheap. “We’re looking at about $50,000 worth of expenses,” said Gershon.

To do this, the team has been holding fundraising events such as a bottle drop and a carwash held at locations in Orange County. Team parents also set up a GoFundMe to help raise the money.

“[Giving] all these tiny towns…something to rally behind has been really special,” said one of the players’ mothers, Mariah Lawrence. “So it doesn’t come as a surprise at all that our communities have showed up.”

The fundraising has also helped to bring the team together off the field. “Every day they’re together they play more like a team and gel together.”

Players say helping them to achieve this goal will not only mean a lot to them, but should for anyone who donates as well. “Know that it’s going to a good cause and going to people that need it and are going to have a good time and make memories and it’s going to be one if the biggest parts in their life,” said team infielder Andrew Langlois.

When asked what he is most looking forward to in competing up in Maine, Langois said, “it’s always been my dream to go to a World Series and it’s a dream come true. It makes me feel very good about myself and how hard the whole team has worked.”

This may be true, but the team is also confident that they have what it takes to win. “If we just really put our mind to it and play the baseball we’ve been playing lately we can beat anyone,” said infielder Mariner Gershon.

If you would like to donate to the team’s World Series trip, click here.