By Corky Mau
Pocket softball team builds winning habits
The Pocket Aces under-12-age-group softball team has a busy summer schedule. The girls spend weekdays practicing. On weekends they compete in tournaments. True to their name, the girls ace most opponents.
The team ended last season with a 62–11 record. Coach Dan Del Mazzio says the Aces are on pace this year to improve their record.
The Pocket Aces are part of the USA Softball Select Program. The season runs January to July. League play takes place via tournaments, with the goal to reach the Western Nationals.
Three competitive softball teams represent Pocket—under 10, under 12 and under 14. This year, all are doing well, but the under 12 squad is exceptional. Several teammates have played together for more than five years.
“These girls have the full package of skills, from strong pitching and hitting, to sharp defense and base speed,” Del Mazzio says.
The Aces won every tournament this year. In April, they moved up against older teams and took top honors in the under 14 USA Softball Tournament in Woodland.
Power hitter Jeneyse Morales has played softball for seven years. She’s a seventh grader at California Middle School and on the Ace’s leadership council. She says, “There’s four girls on the council. Our coaches work on our game skills. The council helps players deal with the ups and downs of the game. We’re like peer mentors.”
The USA Western National Championships run July 24–30 at Maidu Regional Park in Roseville.
JULY 4TH PARADE
Pack sun hats and lawn chairs for the July 4th Pocket Parade. The parade starts at 10 a.m. at Windbridge Drive and South Land Park Drive. The route travels down Windbridge and ends at Garcia Bend Park.
Post-parade entertainment moves to Promenade shopping center on Windbridge this year. The parade is sponsored by District Seven City Council Member Rick Jennings and local civic groups.
MAKE A SPLASH
Congratulations to the junior class at Pocket’s School of Engineering and Sciences. The school’s custom-built solar-powered canoe made a big splash at the recent SMUD Solar Regatta.
Regatta competition is open to high schools and colleges. Working in teams, students design, build and race solar-powered boats. Schools score points for speed, maneuverability, design and other categories. Students gain hands-on experience in renewable energy and engineering.
Eleven high schools entered the competition. Engineering and Sciences won several categories and was named High School Cup Winner. The students walked away with $2,000 and a giant trophy.
“We’ve entered every year. It’s exciting our students finally got their first cup win,” says Will Cannedy, history teacher and a project adviser. “The judges gave SES high points for our boat design. We were the only school to build a boat from scratch, not from a kit.”
Kudos also go to teachers Ken Davis (engineering) and Kacie Go (English and 11th grade lead) for mentoring the students.
JAZZ IN JULY
Councilmember Jennngs sponsors Jazz in July concerts at local parks. Bring lawn chairs and enjoy a picnic dinner. Events run 5–8 p.m., unless indicated. The schedule: July 7, Joe Mazzaferro Band at Marriott Park; July 14, Jeff Minnieweather Trio at William Land Park; July 21, Vivian Lee Band at Garcia Bend Park; July 28, Virginia Ayers Dawson and Ayer Play at Belle Cooledge Park; July 30, Music in the Park at Curtis Park (6 to 8 p.m.)
HOT ROD THURSDAYS
Walk among vintage cars and hot rods on Thursdays, July 6 and July 20, from 4–8 p.m. at Promenade shopping center on Windbridge Drive.
Corky Mau can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions are due six weeks prior to the publication month. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento.