Sports

Pitching in makes everyone better

Richmond Girls Softball’s 94B and 94A softball teams are both taking their game to next month’s provincial championships. - Don Fennell photo
Richmond Girls Softball’s 94B and 94A softball teams are both taking their game to next month’s provincial championships.
— image credit: Don Fennell photo

In the famous French novel Les Trois Mousquetaires (The Three Musketeers) by Alexandre Dumas, the prevailing theme is all for one, one for all. It’s a philosophy the Richmond Girls Softball Association has also adopted.

With everyone pitching in, explains president Steve Smith, everyone shares in the success. And by the time the 2013 season concludes in August, there could be plenty to go around.

From the house divisions to rep and finally senior, Richmond is well-represented in the upcoming provincial championships. Equally satisfying is that at least one team from each age group has qualified.

“We’re hoping to bring home some medals, but success is absolutely not predicated on winning,” says Smith. “It’s at the park, where you see how many days we’re busy, or the time and effort that’s put in by the athletes, coaches and parents, that’s so gratifying.”

Smith is particularly proud of the commitment shown by young coaches such as Brianna Adams and Jessica Mack, and longtime mentors like Jack Hopwood and JR Robinson. He says their efforts are why young girls are having such a positive experience playing softball in Richmond.

Richmond Girls Softball is also committed to providing opportunities for its players and coaches to continually improve.

“We’ve been able to fill at least a session of national coaching certification clinics, and it’s by attending these that you get people to move up,” suggests rep director Al Groff. “We’ve also been able to call on some previous coaches like Donna Goodwin to get a brush-up on things like sliding or defence.”

As an association, Richmond has also made a conscious decision to try to be all-encompassing by providing opportunities for players of all skill levels—both at house and rep.

“The idea is to ensure the experience is fun, otherwise we’re not going to get the players to stay involved,” says Groff. “Over the last couple of years we’ve been able to grow our junior and senior programs and we want to continue to expand those divisions.”

 

Richmond to provincials

•Richmond Girls Softball will be represented at all the upcoming 2013 provincial championships.

•Rep Division (Islanders) teams qualifying include: U12A, July 12 to 14 at Ridge Meadows; U12B, July 12 to 14 at Sicamous); U14A, July 19 to 21 at Ridge Meadows); U14B, July 12 to 14 at Abbotsford; U16A, July 26 to 28 at Victoria; U16B, July 19 to 21 at Alberni Valley;  U18A, July 26 to 28 at Surrey; and U18B, July 19 to 21 at Cordova Bay.

•House Division teams qualifying include: U12C, all invited to attend regional championships June 29 to July 1 at Coquitlam; U16C Panthers, July 5 to 7 at Chilliwack; and U19 Attitude, July 5 to 7 at North Delta.

•Senior Division teams qualifying include: U21B (94B), July 5 to 7 at Victoria; Senior B (92/3B) and (Senior B), July 19 to 21 at Richmond.

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