Co-ed swings banner turnout

The next instalment of co-ed
softball in Cayman is roughly two months away. Based on the results of the
spring league the summer could be another solid season for the sport.

Last month saw the end of the 2011
Winter Adult Co-ed Softball League put on by the Cayman Islands Little League.
The Field of Dreams facility in George Town saw a record 25 teams come out to
test their skills and luck in three divisions: A,B and C.

With the next season starting soon,
league coordinator Alan Markoff states the hope is that there will be an even
greater turnout of companies and squads.

“The next season will start in
mid-July and I’m hoping we can get enough teams to continue having at least
eight teams in every league,” Markoff said. “The more teams we have, the more
interesting the seasons are for the players. The winter co-ed season was very
successful as we had the most teams ever in the programme.”

Three teams emerged champions this
season. The Security Centre, under captain Brad Watts and player/sponsor Stuart
Bostock, claimed the C league title in their first year playing softball. They
took down reigning rookie champs team HSBC in the final. The Maples Sluggers,
guided by sportsmen Kareem Robinson and Shawn Pitterson, hit their way to the B
league title. To do it they had to beat defending league champs the A.L.
Thompson Drills. In the A league Home Gas claimed their eighth championship
this decade by edging last year’s winner Neal Appleby and team Kirk Freeport.

Markoff states aside from all last
year’s champions being defeated in the finals, the results were interesting
because the winners were mostly a surprise.

“All of the leagues were
competitive and we had three new champions compared to last season. In the A
league, Home Gas regained the title they had won many times but Maples had
never won the B league before. They started the season 0-7-2 so their run at
the end of the year was very surprising. The Security Centre won the title in
their first season in the league after an 0-3 start.”

Pierre Foster is a member of the
Home Gas squad. For the part-time DJ and Information Technology administrator
it is only his second title. The Bodden Town native, 27, states this year’s
triumph is special.

“I’ve played softball since I was
12 in little league,” Foster said. “I’ve played with Home Gas for two years as
either a right-fielder or third baseman. This is my second title however it is
far greater than the previous one as I feel I contributed more this season. I missed
quite a few games, including the championship game the season I won my first

“I think the team on a whole
stepped up our level of play. After losing the title last season we had a point
to prove. This was the first season for Renford Barnes and Jahzenia Thomas, who
both brought a lot to the team. Of our existing players Baron Solomon, Peter
Whittaker and Marlon Thomas are always big on the bats and had quite a few home
runs. Also Ryan Ebanks and Alexis Camacho do a pretty good job of stopping anything
in the infield. But again everyone did their part.

“This season went well, we had only
one loss which was to the same team we faced in the championship game. As far
as the level of competition in the sport I would have to say that the league is
designed to be less competitive and a bit more fun than some of the other
leagues however there are teams that take this league very seriously including

“A lot of the men’s and women’s
league players are involved in the co-ed league including members of the
national teams, so the level of competition is quite high at times. Over the
years a lot of people have taken part in the co-ed league and with new teams
joining each season the numbers only seem to be increasing.”