Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Sports

July 7, 2013

LITTLE LEAGUE DISTRICT 14 TOURNAMENT: Day at the ballpark a family affair

GOSHEN — With the calendar rolling into July, along with the Independence Day weekend, that means Little League district tournaments are getting into full swing all over Michiana.

For many local families, summertime means long hours spent getting to the ballpark, at the ballpark or coming home from the ballpark.

But when your entire family is involved in youth baseball or softball to some extent, that can just make for even more family time.

Saturday morning, Tamara Cain was doing double duty for a District 14 Little League 9-10 baseball game at Thelma Schrock Little League park in Goshen. Cain was announcing the game and also keeping the scorebook.

A job that definitely called for a bit of multitasking, as Little League rules mandate that pitchers be held to strict pitch counts.

The official scorekeeper is in charge of keeping those counts.

Cain has been helping out in one way or another with Little League in Goshen for 12 years. Her son, Austin, has been playing since T-ball, and her daughter Ainsley plays in the 10-year-old softball division.

Ainsley didn’t have a game on Saturday, but that didn’t mean she wasn’t busy. She helped out by taking up the collection. Each game requires a $15 donation to the Little League organization to help defray costs.

Cain’s husband, Thomas, also coaches a team, so that can mean the family gets a little spread out from time to time.

But there is still plenty of time for attending each other’s games.

“It’s a great way for us to spend time together,” Cain said between innings.

Meanwhile, down on the field, Sylvia Rivera, her husband and son Alan were cheering on their son Brandon, 9, who was playing in a District 14 9-10 All-Star Tournament game between Goshen No. 2 and Warsaw No. 2.

Alan Rivera, 14, plays in the new 50/70 division.

The Rivera family has been involved in Goshen Little League since Alan was in T-ball, about age 6.

“It’s a special time of the year for us,” Sylvia Rivera said of the Little League season. “It seems like we’re always at a game or going to a game.”

And if there’s no game for her kids, that doesn’t mean they’re not going to one.

“When they’re not playing they want to go see their friends play,” Sylvia Rivera said with a smile.

Baseball season also leads to other temporary changes in the Rivera household, she added.

“My house is usually dirty and we eat a lot of fast food,” Sylvia Rivera said with a laugh.

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Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

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