Challengers recruiting

Playing softball can be a great way
to get fit and women have a lot of options open to them.

One of those possibilities lies
with playing with the Challengers female softball team. The squad is currently
looking for adult players for the 2010 fast/modified pitch season.

At present there are 10 open spaces
on the team and previous experience is not a necessity.

The new fast-pitch season is slated
to start February 14 and run until June. Games are expected to be played at
little league facilities once a week on Saturday and Sunday afternoons alternately.

A big reason why the team has
openings now is due to the roll-over policy. As team manager and player
Kathline Rankin states the club has struggled to maintain team chemistry.

“We have lost many of our players
due to the rollover policy as we have a high number of ex-pats. At the
beginning of each season we have been forced by circumstances to recruit new

“We are the newest female team to
the league as this will be our third year.  Although a few of us have had
past experience the fact that we have not been able to maintain a core group
has not been a great advantage to us. By the time we start bonding some one has
to leave the island.”

Rankin, who is actually Colombian,
is one of eight confirmed players on the Challengers thus far (all returning
from last year).

The side boasts a great
international flair with Canada,
the US, Cayman and the Dominican Republic
all represented.

As Rankin states her team is unlike
the strong Caymanian presence seen in the rest of the league.

“Although the other female teams
have a few ex-pat players, most of their team is made up by persons with status
and/or permanent residency.”

Though the squad is relatively new
the team (sponsored in the past by National Concrete and Greenlight RE) has had
some success. Last season six players took part in the Nicaraguan International
Softball Tournament (which Cayman hosted at the Field of Dreams for the first

Rankin played first base for one of
the two Cayman female teams alongside team-mates Larissa Neville (catcher and
Challengers team captain), Lori Nord (second base), Jen Reggin (third base), Odie
Makrygiannis (short-stop) and Evelyn Alejo (center field).

Interestingly the restart of co-ed
softball last week has been sort of a deterrent for prospective fast-pitch softball

As Rankin states, many women she
spoke to rather the more relaxed pace of the co-ed version.

“The co-ed league has over 20 teams
and it is my impression, from the responses I have gotten when asking players
to join my team, that a) its too competitive at a high level, b) becoming a
part of fast-pitch softball demands too much commitment and c) the injury
factor is a concern (though we have proper equipment).

“Nevertheless we are hoping to
recruit a few more players and continue training in order to improve our skills
and climb up the standings.”

To get on the Challengers team call
Kathline Rankin at 916-7688 or Larissa Neville at 926-5696.