Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local Sports

August 18, 2013

MARK MAYNARD: A wiffle ball home run paradise

ASHLAND — Not even our own Green Monster could keep the wiffle ball in the yard Saturday afternoon.

Seventy-nine home runs went flying out of a makeshift field – complete with the aforementioned Monstah – during the inaugural Big Sandy Superstores AmyforAfrica.com Wiffle Ball Tournament at Unity Baptist Church.

And they weren’t just home runs.

Some of them were downright majestic home runs.

Eventual champion L-Train – Rob and Ryan Lynch and Adam LaLonde - proved to be a home run machine. They must have combined for 40 of them.

Not even the Maynard knuckler could keep their bats silent although my team – the Prokicker.com Original Orange Slush – finished a respectable second place. My team was a little makeshift, with Greg Jackson and Roger “Boom Boom” Doss for half the day (Roger had a surprise birthday party) and sportswriters Aaron Snyder and Kyle Hobstetter the second half (picked up after their team was eliminated).

The 3-on-3 games did what I hoped it would do. It created excitement and nostalgia while providing a fun way to make money for the amyforafrica.com cause. Nearly $2,000 will be collected for the fundraising effort for missions in Moya, Uganda, including money from three donors who said they would pay $1 for every home run hit in the tournament.

They probably didn’t expect 79 and neither did I.

Home runs came from the very old (me and Greg Jackson) to the very young (12-year-old Caleb Keelin launched a pair). Chick-fil A operator Steve Barfield carried his team far with several home runs, including a couple of walkoffs. Sam Beason blasted a call-your-shot walkoff home run over The Monster. Fisherman Russ Crawford showed he could cast a wiffle ball deep, too, and Clay Wofford belted four home runs in a row during one stretch.

Our own Independent team – Snyder, Hobstetter and Adam VanKirk – combined for 10 home runs (make it 11 with my solo shot). Snyder and Hobstetter connected for four apiece. Attorney John Vincent went Yard, too, with a line shot over The Monster. So many home runs, so much fun.

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