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The Press Box For May 30

By Staff | May 30, 2018

Some of the best sports to go watch this time of year are the local t-ball and little league games. Talk about some tough competitors! Those kids give it their all every time they play. What’s even more fun is watching the parents and grandparents when they get involved in the excitement.

The other night, one of the grandmas shouted a few choice words at the home plate umpire (who was just a kid himself) as he called a runner out at home. A proud dad stood over by his truck hollering, “He was safe! He was safe!” How silly! The kids didn’t have a problem with the call. The coach didn’t argue. It didn’t affect the outcome of the game. However, to this dad, there was no way his kid could be out. Just couldn’t happen.

Looks like it’s going to be one of those types of summers. I heard a lady screaming at the coaches the other night, because the game was called for lightning. She had driven all the way from Fly, Ohio to see her granddaughter play. “You are gonna let a little lightning stop the game. Come on don’t be so stupid,” she said.

Arguing over whether to hit off the tee or pitch to kids. We had that problem 35 years ago. Some kids are not as athletic as others at that age, and some kids’ parents don’t spend as much time with their kids as others. Some just don’t have the time to.

The way to handle it is to pitch to those who can handle it, and use the tee for those that need it. Just remember, the best athletes as small kids will not always be the biggest and best as they enter high school.

As we enter another year of t-ball and little league, I want to remind everyone of the inspirational poem entitled “He’s Just A Little Boy.”

The poem reads:

He stands at the plate with his heart pounding fast. The bases are loaded the die has been cast.

Mom and Dad cannot help him, he stands all alone. A hit at this moment would send his team home.

The ball meets the plate, he swings and he misses. There’s a groan from the crowd, with some boos and some hisses.

A thoughtless voice cries, “Strike out the bum.” Tears fill his eyes, the game’s no longer fun.

So open up your heart and give him a break, for it’s moments like this, a man you can make.

Please keep this in mind when you hear someone forget, He is just a little boy, and not a man yet.

You can point the finger and scream and holler all you want, even when it’s at the coach or umpire. But just remember, kids hear very well, and if you want to make a difference… a pat on the back and a few “atta boys” can make a huge difference in a child’s life.

Going to ball games can be a fun time, whether it’s little league, high school, college or even pro. In the past few weeks, I’ve seen everything from five and six year olds, to pro baseball.

One ball game I liked in particular was the Region I, Section II game between Tyler Consolidated and Magnolia, the one when the team combined for 31 runs. Great comebacks by both teams, which kept the outcome unknown until the last out.

The state track meet was another great time as always. The greatest sportsmanship I witness all year long is always in track season.

Sports are an important part of a young person’s life, and it goes a lot further than “It keeps kids off the streets.” It does, in fact, keep kids off the street, but it’s much more than that. Sports provide children with energy and strength; it gets them out of the house and around other children, and sports helps develop a sense of friendliness among each other that can’t be achieved anywhere else.

The best thing you can do as a parent today is to get your child involved in some type of physical activity. The second best thing you can do is provide them with parental support in whatever they choose to partake in. The worst thing you can do is go overboard in your support. Let them play the game, run the race, let them be the kids, it’s their turn not yours.

Sports for the 2017-2018 school season is over. Summer time is almost here. Get out, and enjoy yourself. Have a good time. It won’t be long until the next graduating class will be entering their final year. Sports schedules are already coming in. I received the 2018 football schedules the other day, and the first games of the season will be on August 24. Paden City will play a home contest with Parkersburg Catholic. Tyler Consolidated will also open at home, hosting Ritchie County. As of right now, Paden City has two open dates on the schedule and a total of nine games. The Knights have a full schedule with one open date.

The Wildcats’ volleyball schedule is also in, and it looks like they will be playing around 30 games. They will have a new coach this year but several veteran players will be back, so we’ll look forward to their continued success on the court.

I want to thank all the coaches who returned phone calls, messages and emails this past year. It makes it nice when they care enough to get the kids some recognition in the newspapers. Many times I have parents and fans who want to know why something didn’t make the paper. Sometimes it’s my fault, and sometimes there just isn’t enough room for everything. There are also times when coaches just refuse to communicate or take the time to send an email or call the office. Thanks also goes out to several people who help on a regular basis with pictures; it helps tremendously as we try to get around to all the different games. Your help is greatly appreciated.

We will be accepting little league, t-ball and summer basketball pictures and stats for the sports pages through July. If any coaches or parents want to submit anything, bring the information in and drop it off at the Tyler Star News or Wetzel Chronicle, or email to eparsons@tylerstarnews.com Have a great summer!