As co-ed softball returns to the diamond, the latest champions are eager for more success.
The Cayman Islands Little League Association is scheduled to begin its 2013 Fall Adult Coed Softball League on 22 July at the Field of Dreams facility. The captain’s meeting takes place on Monday, 8 July.
Among those keen for the new season is Doug Harrell, pitcher and captain for KPMG A. The accountants won the A League by beating storied dynasty Home Gas in the final. Harrell said his squad is primed for repeat success in the coming months.
“All of our main players are returning for the next season so we feel good about our chances,” Harrell said. “However, all of the A League teams are fairly evenly talented these days so any team can win on any given day.”
The winter league ended in May produced four champions in KPMG A, B League winners Coors Light Chuggers, C League champs PwC B and D League frontrunners The Misfits.
While KPMG has its sights set on dominating the top flight again, the other squads are hoping to excel in new groups. Coors Light, for instance, will be returning to the A League after a dominant sojourn in the B ranks that produced a 14-1-1 record in the regular season and playoffs combined.
Alan Markoff serves as Coors Light cocaptain and states his club is ready for a new challenge.
“This was the best Chuggers team yet, we have great team chemistry and we simply do not give up,” Markoff said. “Our defence was a beast during the play-offs. To give up only 11 runs over four games in slow pitch softball is really quite remarkable.
“We’ll be moving up to the A League again next season and I think we’re up for the challenge. We’re probably the oldest team in the co-ed programme, in terms of average age, but we’ve got a lot of experience and we play smart ball. We’ve won 25 straight games against B League opponents, so I’m sure the B League will be very glad to see us go.”
Among the sides looking to take Coors Light’s crown in the B ranks are the Maples Sluggers. With young talent like Barrett Edri and Nicholas Roberts, Maples advanced to the winter league finals.
Another contending team should be PwC B. The accountants had a strong performance by nabbing the C League regular season and postseason crowns, besting Krystle Barrett’s team Dart on both fronts. Among the stars for PwC was slugger Chris Orlandini, who said his side relied on a team effort.
“This year we had a full team effort,” Orlandini said. “We had some stalwarts on defence – Scott Murray stepped up to play a solid shortstop, Michael Carey and I were big in the outfield. Our girls also came up big for us – I would consider Liz Austin one of our playoff MVPs with her clutch hitting and solid D.
“Both Rob Harris and Leon Cheung pitched extremely well for us as they split the duties and always came up big when we needed it. Hitting-wise, we had a big-time power surge with Ryne Staback and I leading the team in home runs and many other team-mates were able to go deep this year and help us win games, including Craig Smith and Shane Wanotch.
“The team will see a shake up going forward as a few of our key players will be leaving the Island but we will do our best to reload and come back strong for next season.”