Sports

It happens every spring

by MARK ST.J. COUHIG
Sequim Gazette

Break out the bats and balls and oil up the ole glove.

 

It’s time to crank up Sequim Senior Softball Coed Recreational League play, which means another full season of athleticism, exercise and creaky bones, all in equal measure.

 

John Zervos, president of Sequim Senior Softball, says the 2011 season opens Thursday, April 7. The league is open to “all skill levels,” Zervos said, but there are certain age requirements: only men 50-plus and women 45-plus need apply. The games are very informal affairs: weather permitting, every Tuesday and Thursday from now through the summer everyone who wants to play is invited to come out to Carrie Blake Park at 9 a.m. First there’s a little batting practice, then the crowd on hand splits into two teams for a game. If there are enough players present, four teams may form to play two games.

 

Most players will enjoy the game through the summer, though Zervos says some diehards continue year-round.

 

There’s a $20 annual fee to sign up. The funds are used to purchase the requisite bats, balls and bases. In recent years the players also have ponied up for irrigation lines for the playing fields.

 

This is slowpitch softball, providing an opportunity for exercise and camaraderie, Zervos said. On cold days, the players follow up the game by enjoying breakfast together. When it’s warm, it’s off to the Oasis Sports Bar & Grill for beer.

 

Nancy McPhee, a regular for the past seven years, says “not enough” women participate in the games. “Maybe seven or eight at the peak of the season,” she said. “There are five or six regulars.”

 

Why play? “It’s fun,” McPhee said, “that’s No. 1. And it’s good exercise.”

 

“I don’t know if they’re concerned about it being coed — playing with guys. But these guys are wonderful.”

 

McPhee also said there are rules in place to ensure a level playing field for both sexes and to ensure the safety of all players. With those in place, “it’s basically a pretty safe game,” she said.

 

For more information, call Zervos at 681-2587.

Competitive play

Players with superior skills may choose to sign up with Sequim’s competitive senior team, which this year will be defending its 2010 Peninsula League championship. The team, which competes against teams from Port Angeles, Port Townsend and Bremerton, has stricter age rules, with all players required to be 60 or older, with two exceptions per team who can be 55-59.

 

The team is sponsored by 7 Cedars Casino and the Oasis Sports Bar & Grill.

 

To find out more, call Zervos at 681-2587.

 

 

Reach Mark Couhig at mcouhig@sequimgazette.com.

 

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