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Special Olympics softball team honored

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Photo by Daniel Kucin. Asay Ellis shows off his new award for participating in the national tournament.

Photo by Daniel Kucin. Asay Ellis shows off his new award for participating in the national tournament.

Published on: Friday, January 25, 2013

By Daniel Kucin

The Prince George’s Special Olympics softball team honored its players at the Marlboro Moose Lodge last month.

The team competed in the Special Olympics Tournament held at Towson University in a two-day event in June. Former Bishop McNamara coach and current head coach of the Special Olympics team made sure that every player had the chance to show what they are made of, and it truly paid off. His team won the state championships.

Winning the state championship at Towson granted the team the opportunity to play in the 2012 National Special Olympics Invitational Tournament in Oklahoma City on Sept. 21 for another two-day event. More than 400 athletes competed in this tournament, and it was a great atmosphere for the players to enjoy.

“These kids kind of go unnoticed, and it’s nice to see them get the recognition that they deserve,” head coach Scott Geist said. “They put in a lot of hard work in the spring and summer months, so it must make them feel really good. Every one of them comes to practice and gives it their all, and every one of our players improves. They became a true team.”

One player really helped get the public’s attention. Terry Harvey is one of the team’s unsung heroes, who wanted to break the barrier of not only playing the sport he loves but also having the chance to play against other adults competitively.

“He has kind of been our leader and has been a part of the Special Olympics program for a long time,” Geist said. “This has always kind of been his vision. It’s really special when an athlete comes up to you and says, ‘I want to get a softball team together, but I don’t just want to play for Special Olympics. Why can’t we play in an adult Softball League?’”  

Harvey made sure he found all of the information to play in other leagues. The additional competition has helped his team improve. The team has been getting in ample practice time so they can be prepared to defend their state title next season.

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