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Slowpitch fans like to read the results

Here we go again.

The high school girls slowpitch softball season is upon us.Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, friendsand associates are cheering for their favorite player and team.

“Get-a-hit, get-a-hit, get-a-hit,” is a familiar chant from thedugout and the stands. Slowpitch is a hitting game. Compared tofastpitch, it is a melon toss.

Hits, runs and errors usually decide the winning team inslowpitch. Who gets the hits, and how many, are determined by thescorekeeper.

Players and family eagerly await the next day’s edition of TheDAILY LEADER to read the results. They are anxious to read whohomered, who tripled, who doubled, who singled and who simply got ahit.

Scorekeepers often need an adding machine to keep track of thehits for their own team, much less the opponent. And this is wherethe problem arises.

The majority of slowpitch scorekeepers don’t keep up with theother team’s hits. Unfortunately, they aren’t as conscientious asfastpitch and baseball scorekeepers. Please excuse their oversightbecause habits are difficult to break. It goes all the way back tothe T-Ball League in the recreation department when Bopsey, Bubba,Muffie, Buffie, Fluffie and other players went by first nameonly.

Now, they’re still keeping score at the high school level andfirst names appear to be enough for both teams. Frankly, it’simportant that the scorekeepers maintain a hitting tally for theopponent, including their first and last names.

Coaches, it would help the other team’s scorekeeper a lot if youwould furnish them with a typed or printed roster, listing jerseynumbers, first and last names of players, plus class in school.

Aggravated parents already are starting to call in and complain.”You’ve got the hitters listed for (enter team of choice) in yourarticle but you don’t have our hitters mentioned.”

Unfortunately, some coaches take an aloof approach to thesituation when reporting the scores and hitters. “If they(opponent) want their hitters in the paper, let them call ’em in.We’re not going to fool with them.”

Ouch!

That means more angry parents. Yes, some parents do get theirhackles up, especially when their offspring are involved oromitted.

For sure, this merry-go-round has got to stop. Coaches, whenreporting game results, should list the leading hitters for theopponent or expect the consequences.

It’s unfortunate for all sides. The DL’s sports department triesour best to report the news. We try to cover both sides of thefield, too.

That’s known as fair and unbiased reporting.

Certainly, it doesn’t take that much effort to obtain the firstand last names for the opposing players. If fastpitch and baseballscorekeepers can do it, so can the slowpitch stat people.

Pitching is important in slowpitch, too. Hurlers with goodcontrol often strike out a a batter or two and walk none. That’sknown as an outstanding performance on the mound.

Coaches can be difficult to contact

Often it is next to impossible to contact a coach by telephoneduring the morning hours unless they have a cell phone or a freeperiod at school to either call or FAX their team’s results. Manycoaches call us before school begins in the morning or send a FAXto 833-6714.

Some area coaches are notorious for not calling in theirresults. You probably already know their names.

Personally, we are tired of this scenario. “Information on(name of team) was unavailable at press time.”

Deadline is 9:30 a.m. for this afternoon’s publication. Sportswriters are at the office by 7 a.m.

Coaches, make it a point to instruct your scorekeepers in thefiner points of keeping stats. The DL sports department looksforward to running the results in the newspaper.

Please don’t omit the other team.

Write to sports editor Tom Goetz c/o The DAILY LEADER, P.O.BOX 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602 or e-mailsports@dailyleader.com