By virtue of winning the state title at the intermediate level in baseball, Roswell and Goddard combined to show who they are when they pool their talents and resources together. After winning, the team was ushered into town with a police escort upon returning. Later that week, there was a fundraiser by Papa John’s Pizza to raise money for them to go to Houston, Texas.
On Wednesday, the team was given a send-off by two-time mayor Dennis Kintigh. Kintigh ended up giving the team a pep talk about not being afraid of making a mistake. He asked what would happen if they did make a mistake.
One of the players said they would pick themselves up and continue to play and not let it affect them.
“That’s exactly what I want you to do,” Kintigh said. “It is for sure that during the tournament one or all of you will make a mistake — the key is not to let it affect you the rest of the game. Don’t forget you still have a chance when you’re at bat or in the field to determine the outcome of the game. This is the best life lesson to learn when you are young. You are going to make mistakes and lose, what is important is what you do about it and how you react to what happens to you.”
With that, the mayor wished the kids well and asked if the game was going to be on ESPN or streamed. The mayor told the team he was proud of them for winning state and reminded the team they had a chance to go further this All-Star season and win it all, like the 1956 Lions Hondo team.
With that, the boys roared in approval, before leaving for a photo opportunity with the mayor. Kintigh gave them pins, which they will keep as souvenirs. A dozen parents were there to give the boys cupcakes and celebrate them leaving for Houston. Many of the parents are driving to Houston for their first game.
The Intermediate team has three things going for them that will make them tough to beat. Everyone on their team is a pitcher and can pitch, which gives them a depth that most All-Star teams don’t have. Roswell has four catchers they can interchange.
So far, Roswell has not had a close game and they have lived by the long ball. At least five players have one home run and one player has three home runs. The other thing that has been impressive about the Intermediate team is they are solid defensively, and they have the speed to stop balls hit on the ground from going through to the outfield. Their outfielders can cover a lot of ground to take away balls hit in the gap, which has helped their pitcher get out of innings.
Roswell Intermediates will play at 1 p.m., today against Oklahoma at West University Little League in Houston.
Sports editor J.T. Keith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 304, or firstname.lastname@example.org.