Fall league softball wraps up season

By Mackenzie Michael

Hoping to start off the season strong when spring comes around, the women’s club softball team, also known as The Roar, has just ended its fall season.

They just started their fall season at the end of August and went until last weekend, so they won’t start playing any games again until spring.

Ben Peterson, the coach for The Roar, said, “We just played six to seven tournaments, all on the weekends. Shelley Peterson helps to manage the team with me. She keeps all the statistics. Jason Dewitt and Brian Becker also help me coach.” Peterson had started out as an assistant coach, then started a club team from scratch once he got into the sport of fastpitch softball.

Peterson said, “This team is different from the rest because I started this all from scratch. It’s special to me because the first year we did this, I sat down and tried to figure out what team I wanted to create. I just called people I knew and none of them had to try out. The players have been with us from the beginning, and they’ve been with us all this time. The relationships are important because I don’t coach just to coach softball, we coach values, how to be a good character and how to work hard which will help them in life in general.”

Many of the women started playing softball at a young age. Emma Dewitt, one of the freshman on the softball players for The Roar, said, “The position I play for my team is second baseman and sometimes outfield. I’ve been playing softball since I was four years old, and I play softball because I love being part of the team, and I love the rush I get when I’m playing on the field.” Ashton Syharath, a freshman on The Roar, is also big into the sport and has been playing for a while. “I have been playing softball for about nine years. I like to play softball because it’s something that I love and also something that I can share with my dad.”

Looking back on last season, the women have learned much from past mistakes are getting better by learning from those mistakes.

Dewitt said, “Last season in the spring, I wouldn’t change anything. There’s games that we’ve lost, and I wish we would’ve won, but it’s all part of the learning experience. This fall went well though. We moved up to a harder level this year by competing with 16u teams, so it’s been harder competition, but it’s helping us to become better players. I hope we just continue to play competitive and win as many games as we can. My coach is always trying to help us improve and make us the best we can.”

Syharath also agreed that there’s room from improvement. She said, “Something I would change from last year is being more positive when something doesn’t go well during the game. Other than that, personally, I think it went great because we all got along, and we can always cheer each other up. One of the personal goals I’ve set for myself this year is to become a better third baseman, outfielder and pitcher.”

The women have a competitive season ahead of them once spring comes around. Peterson said, “One of the biggest things our team can accomplish is being more confident in themselves, even though they may not think they can accomplish those goals. Especially since they’re going to be playing against older women and big club organizations, and we can beat them. No matter what, don’t gage your season on wins or loses, but how much you’ve grown and the things they’ve accomplished even though you may want to win. Working hard and winning is just a product of that.”

Even though it may get rough for them farther on in the season, Peterson said, “Their team bond is really good because it’s strong. Each season in the fall and spring once we get playing it gets really intense, putting a lot of pressure on us. It’s a tough sport, but they would always encourage, rely and support each other; otherwise, we’re not going to do good if we don’t have the strength or bond between our players. To keep our bond strong we’ve done fundraisers, the team would go wait tables, but beyond that we do barbeques and fun games at our house. We also go to UNI college softball games. They also love hanging out at the tournaments and going out to eat together. Especially after competing, we like to have a barbeque outside the hotel.”

They’ll have indoor softball tournaments which will start up in January and will go through March. On April 1 is when they’ll start having practice and tournaments outside.

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