Prep softball

Portage alumnae softball game draws nearly 40 former Indians

2013-07-17T16:30:00Z 2013-07-18T11:21:19Z Portage alumnae softball game draws nearly 40 former IndiansJim Peters jim.peters@nwi.com, (219) 548-4363 nwitimes.com
July 17, 2013 4:30 pm  • 

Time may have diminished their skills just a little, but it hasn't taken its toll on their love of the game.

Approximately 40 Portage softball players who graduated between 1989 and 2000 gathered Sunday at the high school, taking part in a pair of games before a crowd of more than 100 fans.

"Some of the parents were just as excited as their kids were about playing," organizer Heather Gapinski said.

The big response allowed for three teams, with the middle group of alumnae sweeping the pair of five-inning games, 3-1 over the older graduates and 5-1 over the younger ex-Indians.

The contests were umpired by Al Guiillen and Mitch Starnes. Athletic trainer Doug Cassell was on hand in the event of medical needs, while Ray Gapinski served as photographer.

"We had all the old coaches coach," Heather Gapinski said. "It was truly a great turnout and I feel truly blessed to be a part of such an amazing group of girls."

Travel wasn't an issue for some.

Debbie Haskell came in all the way from Florida and Carly Ristich made the cross-country trek from Colorado. Participation was supposed to be limited to the classes of 1990 to 2000, but Gapinski wasn't about to say no to 1989 grad Kristie Wendrickx.

"I wasn't going to turn down any girls from playing," Gapinski said.

The turnout was so strong, Gapinski and company plan to make it an annual summer event.

"All the girls want to do this as a yearly thing," she said. "We will start getting together in January, promote more and get more girls and more years together," she said.

"We're hoping for four teams next year and to use the JV and varsity fields."

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