Playing the right way

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Members of the MFL MarMac boys 10U team that were 2017 Iowa USSSA State Baseball Tournament Silver Champions included (front, left to right) Benjamin Krambeer, Jaron Wille, Jacob Schellhorn, Kyle Tilson, Brayden Gordon, Landon Miene; (middle) Quinn McGeough, Dustin Larson, Zachary Driscoll, Parker Kuehl, Aiden Schoulte, Austin Trappe, Kade Humble; (back) coaches Mike Driscoll, Paul Gordon, Monica Larson and Jeremy Schellhorn. (Submitted photo)

MFL MarMac youth baseball team wins big tournament

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

To say MFL MarMac’s 10U baseball team had a successful season is an understatement. The boys went 32-9, including 22-0 in their league, and capped off the season by becoming 2017 Iowa USSSA State Baseball Tournament Silver Champions.

The USSSA (United States Specialty Sports Association) tournament, which was held in Des Moines the weekend of July 8, is open to any team from around the state, said Jeremy Schellhorn, who is one of the MFL MarMac team’s coaches.

Many came from more populous areas.

“The teams we played were all select teams, meaning they had tryouts,” Schellhorn said. 

MFL MarMac’s team, on the other hand, included 80 percent of the fourth grade boys, he noted.

“Most of the teams didn’t know us,” he said, “so we had to show them what we’re all about.”

Boy, did they ever.

After making it through the opening pool play, which seeded the teams, MFL MarMac went undefeated to earn the championship.

Although the Bulldogs performed well offensively, with a team average over .460. Schellhorn said it was the team’s defense that made the biggest difference.

MFL MarMac committed just five errors, he said, earning a .941 fielding percentage.

“The fielding percentage is what I’m most proud of,” Schellhorn remarked. “At this age, that’s very good. We were the best defensive team.”

Schellhorn attributed the boys’ success to working hard on the fundamentals. He said the tournament umpires and other teams even complimented MFL MarMac on its fundamental soundness.

“That’s good to hear,” he said. “This is a good group of kids. We know it, but now others do too. It’s fun for them to play at that level and be successful.”

Schellhorn said this was the first year the team traveled to different tournaments. The experience will aid in their future development, he commented.

“They had a good year and learned a lot about baseball. All 13 kids played their role,” he said, whether it was as a starter, courtesy runner or warming up another player. “That was the difference.”

The team’s season is now over, said Schellhorn, but anticipation is already growing for next year: “I can’t wait for March to get here so we can start all over.”

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