Stressing the fundamentals

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 19, 2006

VIDALIA &8212; Over a dozen area youngsters got the chance to learn the ropes of baseball Saturday afternoon.

The Vidalia Vipers, a 15 & Under team which is heading to the USSSAWorld Series next weekend in Natchitoches, La., put on the camp to raise money for the trip and have a little fun while doing so.

Gary Paul Parnham, former Vidalia High softball coach, who heads up the Vipers,

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said it was a good way to get out and have fun.

&8220;We didn&8217;t have a whole lot of time to put this together or advertise it,&8221; he said. &8220;We wound up not having as big of a turnout as we would have liked, but we&8217;ll fix that. It&8217;s good for these older kids to get out here and teach. They&8217;re having a blast teaching and the kids are having a blast learning from them. We&8217;re going to do this next year, but probably do it earlier.&8221;

Parnham said the team went through several drills with the children who attended the camp.

&8220;We took infield, ground balls, moved to the outfield and did some drills on catching fly balls,&8221; he said. &8220;We had some kids who wanted to learn catcher, so we had our catchers work with them. We taught some how to pitch. We just went through a lot of the basic skills and fundamentals that these kids are going to hear the rest of their lives in baseball. It&8217;s never too early to start learning them.&8221;

Hunter Martin of Vidalia, who plays centerfield for the Vipers, said he had enjoyed the day.

&8220;It&8217;s been a good experience,&8221; he said. &8220;You learn as much from these kids as they learn from you.&8221;