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Junior Pirates win sportsmanship award

By Staff | Jul 29, 2018

The Junior Pirates team is shown above with their Youth First plaque. The team includes, front row, left to right, Caden Krause, Matthew Klabunde, Cooper Peterson, Caleb Langager, Jerry Passe, Kylyn Morrison and Ethan Oppedal. Back row, left to right, are Coach Andy Dahl, Taylor Davids, Blake Sonnek, Mark Domeier of Youth First, Coach Duane Davids, Noah Dahl and Carson Johnson. Not pictured, Kaden Ackerman.

Earlier in the season the 12U Junior Pirates were at a tournament in Owatonna.

They took third place in the tournament, but ended up winning the sportsmanship award.

Now, they were honored by an organization called Youth First because of their sportsmanship and conduct at the tournament, as well.

The team received a plaque and each player and coach was awarded a certificate. They each also received three autographed player cards from the Minnesota Twins. On the back of the cards was the slogan “Become Your Best.”

And, the Twins also gave the Blue Earth team tickets to a game in August at Target Field, where the local players will be able to walk around the field to be honored before the game.

“Youth First tries to identify teams who have sportsmanship characteristics in youth sports,” says Mark Domeier, a teacher from New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva who is on the Youth First board. “We look for conduct, character and community as a team.”

Domeier says the Blue Earth Junior Pirates were chosen for the sportsmanship award in Owatonna by the umpires at the tournament.

The team was given the awards at a ceremony last Tuesday evening at the 14th Street Ballfields.

“I am very proud of all the kids, and the parents who have had a role in teaching them respect and sportsmanship,” Junior Pirates coach Duane Davids said. “It has long been the goal of BEAYBA (Blue Earth Youth Baseball Association) to not only be successful on the diamond but to do so in a respectful manner.”