Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

January 19, 2014

LaLonde takes softball training to HIT Center

HUNTINGTON — Adam LaLonde still gets a thrill watching the light come on for one of the girl softball players he trains.

“For me, the fun is watching these kids succeed,” said LaLonde, a professional softball player who has been working with players in the Tri-State for six years. “They get phenomenal confidence after one lesson. Their skill level skyrockets.”

LaLonde, who calls Ashland his home, has a full dance card when it comes to students. He said he has 120 teaching slots in four days and there is not one opening.

He taught at Championship Fastpitch in the Cannonsburg area the past five years, but now is leasing space at the HIT Center in Huntington, a comprehensive fitness facility focusing on weight loss, fitness and sport specific center. HIT stands for High Intensity Training, but HIT works well with LaLonde, too, since he is regarded as one of the top hitting instructors in the country.

The HIT Center is now home for the Adam LaLonde USA Softball Training Academy, one of only four official USA Softball Training academies in the nation. The other sites are Shula Vista, Calif., Altamonte Springs, Fla., and Salt Lake City.

“Their (the USA Softball) exact words were ‘We are honored for you to carry our name,’’’ he said.

Ultimately, LaLonde said, he wants to prepare his students for playing at the college level. To that end, he will be bringing in big-name college coaches for clinics to the HIT Center.

“On Feb. 1 I have the head coach of the University of Oregon not only doing a coaches’ clinic, but doing four different two-hour sessions of small-group pitching,” LaLonde said. “He’s the pitching coach for the USA National team, Michael White, my former teammate.”

LaLonde had an open house Jan. 4 at the HIT Center and the turnout was huge. The spacious center opened up some space just for LaLonde’s students. “We can have two cages going, multiple (hitting and fielding) drills and stations. There’s a lot of cool tools we’re using in there.”

The HIT Center opened the new 8,000-square-foot turfed softball/baseball and soccer facility for sports development. Next to the new turfed area is a 5,000-square-foot sport court with a full-length basketball court and soccer goals for indoor skills training.

John Oxley, the HIT Center director, said having LaLonde and his students at the facility is “the perfect marriage. I believe we can help each other.”

Ty McKinney, a coach at West Virginia Tech and formerly an assistant at Morehead State, is teaching with LaLonde. They were also Team USA teammates.

LaLonde is leasing space at the HIT Center on Monday through Friday.

“Softball is year around now,” LaLonde said. “It’s a sport where kids are wanting to get training and playing time.”

Besides the 120 students, LaLonde said he had a waiting list of 52.

“These girls are nuts over it,” he said. “A lot of college coaches come in to evaluate these kids.”

Those interested in getting on the waiting list may call LaLonde at (606) 465-4113.

MARK MAYNARD can be reached at mmaynard@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2648.


Text Only
Local News
  • 0728bank5.jpg Gate City landmark demolished

    The historic Catlettsburg National Bank Building was being taken down after the front dormer window collapsed on Sunday.

    July 28, 2014 4 Photos

  • Local counties see drop in unemployment

    Boyd County was one of 117 counties that saw a decrease in its unemployment rate between June 2013 and June 2014.

    July 27, 2014

  • 0726bigboy.JPG Big Boy to open Aug. 11

    The long-awaited Frisch’s Big Boy restaurant will open Aug. 11, and when it does it will be business as usual from day one: the eatery will open its doors to the early breakfast crowd at 6:30.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • SOAR meeting at MSU Aug. 6

    Morehead State University and St. Claire Regional Medical Center will present Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers as part of a "Health Impact Series" under the new Shaping Our Appalachian Region initiative.

    July 27, 2014

  • MSU moving business admin. program online

    Morehead State University’s School of Business Administration has announced its bachelor of business administration degree in computer information systems has moved totally online beginning the fall 2014 semester.

    July 27, 2014

  • Thefts, fraud reported to APD

    The following information was taken from Ashland Police Department reports:

    July 27, 2014

  • Raceland couple join Peace Corps

    A couple from Raceland will travel to the Republic of Botswana on Aug. 10 to begin training as volunteers in the Peace Corps.

    July 27, 2014

  • Missing Boyd inmate returns to jail

    The Boyd County inmate who walked away from a work detail on Saturday turned himself back in to the Boyd County Detention Center on Sunday.

    July 27, 2014

  • 0728MoreheadMusic_1457.jpg Hills alive with Old Time Music

    The hills surrounding Morehead were alive again this weekend with the sounds of fiddles, banjos and deep Appalachian voices that help keep old time mountain music alive in a modern world.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bill Clinton coming to eastern Kentucky to stump for Grimes

    CNHI News Service

    GLASGOW — Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is again calling in the “Big Dog” in her quest to unseat five-term Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.

    July 27, 2014