Friday, 17 August 2012 00:00
Under a blazing hot sun, the Mineola 9/10 Summer Baseball took their turns in a friendly, competition against each other in a pitch, hit and run contest on Saturday, Aug. 4. This fun competition, based on the national competition of the same name, challenged the boys in pitching accuracy, hitting distance/accuracy as well as speed on the base paths.
In a very tight race, Zach Bongiovanni prevailed as the team champion, placing first in the hit and run competition. Patrick Solosky was the pitching champion and placed second overall.
The clinic continued with the return of Coach Edward Proctor, the JV Baseball Coach for Kellenberg Memorial High School. Proctor led the team through a series of skills stations that included pitching, throwing, bunting and handling the difficult “rundown.”
Coach Proctor always connects with the young players and they had a blast going through the various stations. Each player demonstrated their new skills by lying down bunts and every player was challenged to lead the team in a “rundown.”
The day ended with a summer barbecue at Mineola’s Wilson Park. For the past two years, the Mineola Knights of Columbus has shared their annual summer barbecue with teams of the Mineola Summer Baseball Program. After enjoying hot dogs, hamburgers and salads, the boys participated in a baseball game, volleyball game, free throw contest and running bases.
Every player won an award in the contests but most importantly, had fun. Finally, when the heat was just too oppressive, the team headed to the Mineola Pool for a cool down swim. It was the total summer experience with baseball, barbecues and swimming.
The Mineola summer baseball team is a developmental team that stresses fun and learning. Players are assigned to different positions and challenged to try pitching and catching.
The team has weekly clinics with guest instructors that develop their pitching, hitting and fielding skills. The clinics have featured a unique, “catcher’s station” at which an older travel team catcher works with the boys on this unique position. They also feature “guest instructors” that focus on a particular aspect of the game.