Home SPORTS Paris Americans 10U baseball team honored with hot dog dinner at Woodall Fields

Paris Americans 10U baseball team honored with hot dog dinner at Woodall Fields

by MyParisTexas
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In recognition of the Paris Americans 10U baseball team’s state championship in Longviewduring the month of August, the Paris Optimist Clubhosted a hot dog dinner at the Woodall Fields. Parents, players, coaches, and organizers were treated to hot dogs, chips, and beverages provided by the optimist club. In addition to this, the team was presented with a state championship banner to honor their super series win.


The support from the community is something the team and its coaches appreciate the efforts.


“This is a good organization out here,” Americans head baseball coach Macky Moree said. “Regardless of the circumstances and the times we’re in, they always try to do things like this for the kids, which is what it’s all about. They make sure it’s all about the kids out here. They’re always feeding us — they’re always doing something…They just wanted to do something even with COVID-19. They were really glad to get our banner there, which is something people asked us a lot about…What they do out here is good and good for the community — lots of support.”


It takes a village to raise and cultivate success, and several different members of the community have made the Paris Optimist Club’s success and celebration of its teams a reality.


“We are very thankful to all the people that volunteered to make this possible,” Paris Optimist Club executive director Sabra Vaughan said. “It takes gobs and gobs of coaches and parents that are willing to take kids back and forth to practices and signing them up to play as well. We love the fact that we are a recreational league, so every kid that wants to play this fall can play. As far as the all star teams, it takes a lot of extra attention from the teams, coaches, and parents. Of course we have so many businesses in the community that sponsor teams and help the all star travel teams with their expenses…We couldn’t do this program at all from so many people…We do it for the kids and the optimist motto is, ‘bringing out the best in kids,’ and we feel like baseball does that. We feel like this happens for all kids, but sometimes you’ve got to do that in the spotlight under pressure, and there are just a lot of life lessons that come with baseball. We love doing what we do.”


During the uncertain times amidst our world, Moree and his staff knew it was of the utmost importance to keep their players safe, but also connected with each other as the strong team chemistry did not fade.


“It’s important for us to get these kids out of the house and around each other,” Moree said. “The biggest part about the culture we want to create is the team aspect. We want these kids to know they’re on a team, and that we all want them there. When you’re cooped up in the house with COVID and all that stuff, we would send pictures on Facebook to each other and different things to keep everyone connected. Until we got them back together, we just wanted them to stay in touch and keep their bond intact since they’re going to be playing together for years. We just wanted to keep that rolling.”


Towards the end of their championship run, Ky Fortner hit a walk-off grand slam, down 0-1 in the count, to send his team past Palestine in bracket play by a final score of 8-5. The moment was a big one for Fortner, especially the celebration.


“After I hit, I thought he (Palestine centerfielder) caught it when I was going to first,” Fortner said. “But then I realized the ball went over when I saw it bounce, and I was really happy when I got to second. Then, Macky (Moree) was running all the way home and, once I met him, my faceguard moved all the way around my face from all of us celebrating. It was pretty exciting.”


Not to be outshined was his teammate and catcher Noah Williams, who threw out three runners attempting to steal a bag during an outing in the recent LCS Labor Day Bash tournament title run. Williams enjoys the strong connection he and his teammates share, which makes the game exciting.


“I just like having a good team that you know is one of the best teams out there,” Williams said. “It’s cool to have a lot of good friends on the team — it makes me feel really good about myself and the team I am a part of.”


The Paris Optimist Club is eager to begin planning for the future amidst uncertain times, and they hope to accomplish even more for a successful 2021 season.


“We won’t be able to do fall ball this year due to COVID, but we hope to have a spring season as scheduled with registration happening in the fall,” Vaughan said. “We’re getting things ready now which includes improvements to the restrooms and the baseball fields as well. We hope to be ready in the spring so we can do it all over again.”

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