County Executive Calvin Ball and Director of Recreation & Parks Raul Delerme spoke before a Senior Sendoff Baseball Tournament that began Tuesday, July 14 and concludes on Wednesday, July 15 at Blandair Regional Park. The games are being held for the baseball players that graduated from Howard County schools this past spring. Four teams were comprised of 68 players from all 12 Howard County high schools and 12 coaches volunteered their time. Photos can be found here.
Parents stood with their new graduates on the field as each of their names were read by their former high school coach. Safety measures were adhered to, including required masks for those present. Following the coaches, Director Delerme and County Executive Ball addressed the teams.
“Last night I was thrilled to join some of our Howard County Senior Baseball players, their families, and their coaches to recognize their time, passion, and dedication to baseball,” said Ball. “It was a welcome reminder to all of us that despite what is happening in the world, our community can come together, in a safe way, to support one another. Special thank you to all our volunteer coaches and Howard County Recreation and Parks who made this tournament a reality to highlight our seniors.”
“As someone who grew up playing the game, I was excited that my Recreation & Parks staff wanted to organize this opportunity to recognize these athletes and provide them a chance to play a few games prior to entering the next stage of their adult lives.” commented Raul Delerme.
Brian Wyman, a Recreation & Parks employee, Long Reach High School Baseball coach, and former Long Reach High School baseball player was in a unique position to smoothly coordinate a safe and fun tournament.
“The County’s coaches got together with a plan, and through Rec and Parks we were able to give these graduates an experience we hope they won’t forget” said Wyman. “When I got the green light, we opened registration, ordered shirts, and had all the players and coaches registered within two weeks, which has to be a record for turnaround time from concept to event.”
All the players participating are attending two-year or four-year colleges or are joining the military in the fall. In addition, some are planning to continue their athletic and academic careers in baseball and other sports such as football.
Among those on the field were several Maryland State Association of Baseball Coaches’ pre-season All-State Baseball selections. Zach Geesaman and Benji Thalheimer from Atholton High School, Daniel Elliott from Reservoir High School, and Magnus Dunn from Mt Hebron High School were among those who received the prestigious award in February. Dunn was also the 2019 Howard County Player of the Year. He was featured in a National ESPN special with Scott Van Pelt shortly after the spring season was cancelled in April.
For the latest updates on Howard County Recreation & Parks sports programs and leagues, visit https://www.howardcountymd.gov/sports.