A championship for the ‘family’
Published: Thursday, June 21st, 2012
It had been an amazing, unforgettable, unbelievable day, one of those that deserves to be shared with one's family.
"Family" in this case means the Vermillion baseball family, one of several families to which I belong—the USD music family, the UCC church family, et al. There have been others such as the football family in Custer in those two autumns I was there when the Wildcats made their two runs deep into the playoffs. Families that share magical moments never to be forgotten.
Most of the Vermillion High team were juniors, a group of athletes who already had two state championships to their credit—as younger Teeners in 2009 and as older Teeners last year. A smaller number of the players were seniors who just graduated. This was their last shot at a state title.
Way back in March on an unseasonably warm Sunday in Sioux City, the season began with a doubleheader split against a team of northwest Iowa all-star Legion players. After a loss to Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Iowa, and another to Class "A" Yankton, the Tanagers were 3-3 heading into Easter weekend. They wouldn't lose again, meaning a 15-0 run to the state "B" championship on Memorial Day.
As the guy who reports their games for the paper and who serves as P.A. announcer for home games, I get to know the kids very well, and their coaches and their parents and their grandparents. All those who are always there. The baseball family. And they welcome me into their ranks.
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