SMITHFIELD, R.I. (WPRI) — The Smithfield All-Stars received a hero’s welcome Wednesday evening upon their return from the Little League World Series.

The Metro Region champions made their triumphant return to Smithfield after spending more than a week in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

The boys’ bus was escorted by the Smithfield police and fire departments to Deerfield Park, where the team was greeted by a crowd of fans and loved ones.

Despite being tired, several of the boys told 12 News they’re happy to be home.

“I haven’t met half of the people that were supporting us … it was really incredible,” pitcher Connor Curtis said. “You could feel it from everywhere.”

Smithfield’s season came to a heartbreaking end Tuesday night, when the team was eliminated by the West Region champions of El Segundo, California. The team had its ups and downs throughout the tournament, from winning their first game against Nevada to dropping into the consolation bracket with their loss to Tennessee.

The boys bounced back with a win against Pennsylvania, but were overwhelmed by California, which kept Smithfield from scoring until the last inning of play.

This was the first time in 72 years that Smithfield made it to the Little League World Series, and the ninth Rhode Island team since 2001 to take the field at Howard J. Lamade Stadium.

The tight-knit town of Smithfield rallied around the boys throughout the whole tournament, hosting watch parties and raising money for the team’s travel expenses.

“It’s special what these kids just did … to fight the way we fought,” Smithfield coach Eric Gibree said.

Shanyn Turner, acting president of the Smithfield Little League, said the town will host a parade to celebrate the team’s accomplishments at a later date.