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August 23, 2017
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Backpacks and books, students start their first day of school Construction on schedule at Rancho A new school year Chess ‘Queen of Katwe’ visits RP Airbnb homes no longer allowed in Rohnert Park Brothel found Rancho Cotate High School bomb threat up date Japanese students enjoy visiting Rohnert Park Congressman Thompson holds town hall meeting in RP New team, new coach, new method of practice Rohnert Park and Cotati citizens come out for safety tips and fun at annual National Night Out RP City Council one step closer to vision of downtown Local team sets goal of $100,000 for Leukemia and Lymphoma Ribbon cutting event introduces the new and improved Richard Crane Elementary School 54 miles of road work to cause delays for some local roads Cotati’s K9 unit comes out for annual Coffee with a Cop event Update from March 8 Bomb Threat Reducing city debt Self-Proclaimed “Downtown L.A. Predator” in Rohnert Park Cotati City Council votes to join Climates Mayors Initiative Rohnert Park and Cotati hope to take part in Bike Share Program April Paul becomes an honorary lioness From the Publisher’s desk: Media preview ride offers sneak peak of SMART train Dancing the night away with Moonlighters Cypress School and UCP visits Stinson Beach for surf camp Local smoke shop employee pleads not guilty For RP city, some fireworks are illegal Out of a crime comes kindness Cotati City Council to attempt to get quicker start time for quiet zone establishment Trend in car smash and grabs significantly rises RP City Council audience reminded to keep it safe and sane Citizens Public Safety Academy accepting applications Jazzed it up with love and music Credo High School’s special day 25th Annual Cotati Kids' Day Celebration Bikes become the equalizer at UCP day camp Rohnert Park water rates to rise with little to no resistance Skate park project a possibility for parks and rec Free lunch for any child served at La Plaza Park SMART and safe 'Hail to the chiefs' a fitting title for annual Penngrove Parade Nurse’s strike in Petaluma Breakfast and safety tips at annual Penngrove pancake breakfast Sutton takes oath of Eagle Scout The Kut-Ups’ final curtain call after 45 years Shows are icing on the cake Bugles Across America First Rohnert Park student to visit sister city in Japan brings back gift RP summer camp brings pets and kids together Fun after school Get ready Cotati - water and sewer rates are rising Petaluma teachers hold one-day strike Gift of $1,000,000 to the Sonoma County Fair Foundation Cotati woman pleads: consider the salamander PG&E contractors to inspect gas meters in Sonoma County Rohnert Park moves to make medication disposal easier Protestors show up, affordable housing gets closer Caps being tossed after graduation at Tech-High Rancho Cotate Graduation 2017 Safreno, 2017 Veteran of the Year Now that the dust has settled, is the CRPUSD ready for the next project? A sea of flags Cyber tip leads to Cotati man arrested for possession of child pornography Nominations are now being accepted for the 2017 Employer Best Practice Awards Breakfast! Place receives Girl Scout Gold Award.

Cal Ripken’s U 10 team gets higher up nod

  • Cal Ripkin U 10 team will be moving on to regional tournament Photo by Jane Peleti

By: Katherine Minkiewicz
July 14, 2017
They get a ticket to play in Pacific Southwest Regional Tournament after winning state

The Rohnert Park Cal Ripken All Stars baseball team 10-year-old league will be traveling to Central California next week, advancing for the third time to the Pacific Southwest Regional Tournament in an attempt to get a chance to play in nationals after winning the State Tournament in Oakland last month.

The team will be traveling to Visalia next Sunday, where they will get a chance to play four games, where if they win the championship, they then will move onto the U 10 worldseries, according to Chris Vachini, team manager.

Even though the weather forecast for the Visalia area calls for 100-105 degree temperatures, games will not be put on hold due to heat and will instead be played in the evening hours, according to Coach Jason Bradley.

“It’s going to be hot, we’re hearing 100 or 105… and we’ll try to do our games in the evening around 5:00 or 7:30 p.m. that way it’s kind of in the evening to where it is not so hot,” Bradley said. 

In order to get to this point in the tournament, the team of 12 boys in uniforms of red and blue had to come back from a two game loss in the State Tournament.

“Into the championship round we had to be beaten twice, we were flat, I showedy I was nervous, my wife told me to walk away, but when I came back, the boys were sitting and they were calm… they were laughing, they were all focused and just having fun,” Vachini said. “So that made me feel great going into the last game, they came out and played their game and won the game.”   

Maria Rodnick, whose son plays as a catcher and first baseman, said she was proud of how the team came together to play and win the game to move onto the regional tournament.

“They had gone undefeated all week, then they lost the first two games, but the parents and the team did everything to keep spirits high. But they supported each other and love each other. It gives me goosebumps when they play, they play like brothers and they play with integrity,” Rodnick said. 

To get ready for the next round of games in the regionals, where they lost last year’s final game by one run, the coach and team manager are putting the boys through their usual two-three hour practice twice a week, Bradley said.

Practices include working on plays, defense and working on a cool-down conditioning sessions for the last 20 minutes of practice, according to Bradley, who was mowing the grass to ready the field for practice.

“We’ll do defense, infield, outfield, we’ll do a lot of that everyday for about two hours then we’ll probably hit for about another hour and then we do a lot of training, working on the body, a lot of conditioning. We’ll do some running, push-ups and planks just to get their body ready,” Bradley said.

Sarah Ziese, parent of a new left fielder on the team, said it is her son’s first time being on the team and that their method of practice is much different compared to other teams.

“It is so fun to watch them, they have a certain way of practicing, they do conditioning and it is very rigorous. It drops my jaw how hard these guys work, they are so dedicated.” Ziese said.

In terms of coaching, Bradley’s main goals in guiding the team during the tournament, include making sure the boys keep a positive mindset and reminding them the importance of playing how they play.

“I will just tell them, play U 10 ball, don’t let anything else get in our way. Play our baseball, do what we do and we’ll be fine,” Bradley said.

If the team gets flustered during a game, Bradley said that he reassures the team with similar words and trying to keep up the positive spirit.

“We try to get them back up, hyped up. Mentally, they are 10-years-old, so they can sometimes fall off the truck and we just got to talk to them and get them back on the truck and have positive thought,” he said. 

While every team member isn’t guaranteed a chance to play in the game, according to Bradley, they will work hard to try and have every player get a chance to be a part of the regional games, and play.

“We’ll definitely certainly try to get them all in, sometimes some only get to hit, some only see defense, but we’ll definitely try to get them all in,” Bradley said.

After coming so close to winning last year’s regionals, Bradley said the team is ready and excited to come back and “have something to prove.”

“Last year we were a run short of going to the championship game in Utah, so we’re back this year and they have something to prove. They felt they didn’t play hard enough when you fall short of one run,” Bradley said. 

Win or lose the next round of games, Vachini said he couldn’t be more proud of how far the boys have come and how hard they work, noting the connectivity that all players share with each other as an important key to their success.

“They’ve worked very hard to get where they’re at, they’re a great group and we are proud. We stay like a family and that is the key to it all, they’re all into they all want to work hard. There is not a kid on this team that doesn’t want to put in the effort and doesn’t go home and hit and play catch with their dad and do extra work,” Vachini said. “They’ve been working their butts off.”

According to Bradley the team is excited and third baseman Seiji Harris said he too was excited to get to play in the regionals.

If the team wins the next four game championship in Visalia, then they will travel to Hammond, Indiana for the world series.