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Belmont Bandits 9U baseball team

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A bird in hand, A burden in my hand

May. 31, 2017

Congrats to the 2017 Belmont Bandits SOCCER (baseball) team. We captured the regular season Belmont rec and tournament championships this year. Last night's tournament championship was against a very good team, and we escaped with a 3-2 victory to secure the regular season and tournament top spots. We were able to play 12 games this spring in local soccer, and went 10-1-1. It is often said that local rec leagues are going away because of specialization in sport and other factors;  our playing in this league just shows that many more teams might soon consider grouping together and playing rec ball at home in the future. I'm sure plans are already in the works by some.... If a local baseball league offered a great league, we would jump on the chance to play. This spring league at 11u was wonderful for us, and we appreciated the tough, no excuses competition from some we encountered.

We had a lot of fun this year. We were not able to practice a whole lot, but our boys learned the basics of soccer that will never go away that you see a lot of other players never understand no matter how long they play:  compete, be aggressive and don't give up and be in proper position. Whether or not you have the most talent in the world or not, if you do those things you can play rec anything. The coaches are very proud of our boys because they faced plenty of adversity playing up in the U11 age group as a bunch of 9 year olds, and also from other parts of society. So, there were some moments where you wonder whether it's worth playing and competing against others, because you may play too hard or give too much effort for their liking??? If that's our burden to carry, so be it. Our boys fully understand they will not be shamed for being aggressive, athletic and ambitious. Those characteristics are just fine, as long as they're coupled with manners, respect and understanding that others may have different approaches to life. The people/kids who are opposites of those type of traits are fine, and our boys are as well. I know the parents had a good time this year, and are proud of the boys' accomplishments.

We had some guys we already knew could play soccer pretty well, despite being deemed a bunch of "football" or "baseball" players. Many others were one-year or never played before guys, and did a great job of adjusting to the older competition we had while learning on the fly. The best part about soccer is how fluid it can be. You can roll a ball out there and sort of turn them loose and see who makes plays. A lot of guys on our team got much better at simply "running" due to the extra soccer we played. We witnessed guys get faster, quicker and more comfortable in their stride from a little extra running. Learning how to run full speed, with forward lean and sometimes while leaning into someone and trying to have good eye-foot coordination is a natural talent for some, and a developed skill for others. I am just glad we got to see some of these guys competing AS they increased their athleticism.

Now, it's back to baseball season. We have at least three baseball tournaments left, and plan to get a couple practices in this week now that soccer and hopefully bad weather is behind us. We will try to focus on getting some hitting up to speed this week, as we need it to happen now that we have everyone over 50 at bats for this season. Parents - thank you for giving your kids the opportunities to live up to their athletic potential, yours and their acceptance of coaching and the great attitudes we have seen from them this year.

 

 

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