Sunday, July 17, 2016

County Ball Champs!

Waaaaay back in April, I got a call from a guy who is on the little league board asking me if I would coach Jenna's team for pee-wee girls.  He said, "Nobody else wants to do it."  Only knowing that my daughter would be on the team and having no clue who else, I just agreed.  I help coach Jenna's 10U team for the Ames League and really enjoy it.

Fast forward to the first day of practice in May.  In the pee-wee division, it's 2nd through 4th grade.  Now, not only is there a big difference physically in this age group, but also ability wise.  I had Jenna and Josie (the catcher) who have played for a few years and play in the fall and spring and then I had girls who had never played anything before.

I came home from the first practice and I didn't even know what to think.  I told Aaron if we won two games all season, I'd be shocked.  I'm not saying that in a mean way, but in a we lack experience sort of way.  Aaron responded with a, "Just wait and see and if nothing else, you'll help them with the basics and you can be proud of how far the girls have come from day one."
 Fast forward to the first game of the season when the other coach said to me, "I have you guys picked to be in the championship game."  I laughed at him.  Hard.  We ended up tying that game.

Then, a funny thing started happening.  We won the second game and the one after that and the one after that....
We finished the regular season undefeated and tied twice.  I couldn't believe it.  They do a blind draw for tournaments and we had both of the teams we tied with (two very good, tough teams) on our side of the bracket.  We made it through.
I'm sure most of you that knew me back in the day are not overly surprised that my daughter would be pitching. ;)  She pitched every single inning this season.  She worked hard and I couldn't have asked more of her.  God bless those long limbs of hers!  
 These pictures are from the game we had to win to make it into the championship. 

 I feel like she knew her dad was taking her picture?!  Cheese ball.
 It's fun to win, right?  Who doesn't like to win?!  These pictures of the smiles, that's what means so much to me.  They knew they were heading to the final game and they were PUMPED.
Sunday, July 10th we played our final game of the season and I told the girls this was the last time EVER we would be with this exact team.  I told them to just have fun and cheer on their teammates.  We got behind, 1-0, and then came back to win.  As you can see, more smiles from the girls!
 Jenna and Josie.  My battery.  These two crazies started doing the chest bump during basketball and did it after every game this season. 
Proud of her.  So happy that Aaron got this photo.  
 We all got announced and got medal presented to us by the Rose Queen.  Cool stuff.

 I can't say enough about these girls.  They worked hard from day one.  They all improved.  They did what I asked of them with a good attitude. I loved teaching them a sport that I love in hopes that they love it too!   
 We had to have a "State Center Black on 3" one last time....

 I hope this kid continues to work hard.  Softball is her favorite.  I hope to prod her along and foster that love of this game without pushing her too hard.  She will be successful if she continues to put in the time, effort and work. 
 The parents were awesome enough to get me this little thank you card and basket of goodies.  You know how some coaches have a heck of a time with parents complaining about this, that or the other thing?!  Yeah, that was the opposite of what I had.  I would ask at practice for help shagging or hitting or catching or grabbing more balls out of the shed and they just did it.  These parents were always 100% supportive and I was so lucky!!!
 And finally, Jenna has three brothers that didn't really care that she just won a championship.  They were tackling her to the ground any way. Haha!!

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