April 29 marked the beginning of another youth season for baseball and softball in Penn Yan. Penn Yan Youth Baseball and Softball kicked off the year with their annual parade at 10 A.M. from the Elm St. Boat Launch. Teams of tee ball, minor, major, and softball players paraded up Keuka St. escorted by a Penn Yan police patrol car and followed by Penn Yan volunteer fire fighters driving their vehicles. The procession turned left on Elm St. and continued until they reached the Elm St. Baseball Complex where they were greeted upon entering the field by the Penn Yan High School Mustang baseball team and a throng of family, friends and spectators.
Sponsors, coaches and teams were introduced at all levels. Tee ball (ages 5-6) includes 4 teams; Marlins (Byrne Dairy), Astros (Keuka Appraisal), Nationals (Knights of Columbus) and Mets (M&M Contracting), minors (ages 7-8) has 5 teams; Rays (Monello Winery), Red Sox (Lyons Club), Orioles (Empire Access), Yankees (Finger Lakes Realty) and Blue Jays (Yates County Sheriff’s Office Road Patrol), majors (ages 9-12) is made up of Birkett Mills, Dailey Electric and the Moose Club and finally, softball (ages 9-12) is sponsored by Seneca Farms. Approximately 150 youth from the Penn Yan area compromise the teams.
Following the national anthem and the Penn Yan Youth Baseball and Softball oath, led by Brady Emerson and Hayley Brown, a cash raffle was held. Shelly Miller won the top prize of $250. To close out the ceremonies, Dave Shipman was selected to throw out the first pitch. Mr. Shipman has spent parts of 7 decades playing, coaching, being part of the Board of Directors and contributing in many other ways as a volunteer supporting youth baseball in Penn Yan.
Immediately following the ceremony, teams got to the action. Almost every tee ball and minor teams had a game on Saturday, and the older boys began the season with the Moose Club squaring off at 11:00 AM against league foe Dailey Electric. Birkett Mills hosted Prattsburgh at 1:00 PM.
Strong pitching from Liam Chapman, who got the win, and Riley Griffiths, who picked up a save in his first-ever pitching performance in the majors, led Dailey Electric to their opening day victory 9-7 over the Moose Club. Griffiths and Chapman each scored three times for Dailey Electric. David Reed contributed 2 RBI to the cause while Reece Middlebrook and Nate Bryan added a hit. “The infield and outfield did a great job making plays, hitting the cutoffs and above all, knowing what to do with the ball when they got it,” said winning skipper, Billy Griffiths.
Kade Steele led the Moose with a perfect 3 for 3 day at the plate including a leadoff double in the fourth inning. In the bottom of the sixth down 9-3, newcomer, Brianna Naprava tried to spark a late rally by the Moose with a clutch single. She followed that with a stolen base and a run scored. Moose would see three more of their blue shirts touch home in the bottom frame, but it would not be enough as their comeback fell short, 9-7. Also, contributing to the Moose’s offense were Derek Allison and Owen Bishop with two single baggers apiece.
Birkett Mills couldn’t overcome their opening day jitters as they fell to a visiting Prattsburgh squad, 9-1. No other details were available.