Morgan Rogers remembers spending time at the Ellensburg High School softball clinic. Now 17 years old, Rogers coaches young girls through the various steps required to throw a softball.

Ellensburg High School hosted a three-day softball clinic April 22, 24 and 26. The clinic taught 42 young girls from the Kittitas Valley the fundamentals of softball.

Rogers said she remembers doing the same drill sets and competitions as the girls she’s teaching today.

“It’s so fun watching like the kids grow up and they come to our games,” Rogers said.

The clinic worked with girls from first through fifth grade and the majority are apart of Ellensburg Youth Softball.

The first day, Monday, April 22, the girls focused on playing catch, fielding ground balls and footwork.

Skills evolved from the first day to encompass a variety of abilities such as learning to hit on the tee, different pitches, how to properly grip a bat and how to execute a strong athletic stance.

Ellensburg fastpitch head coach Scott Gant said he’s not the coach at the clinic. Gant said he can depend on his girls to take lead and direct the clinic, leading drills, working one on one with participants and taking charge to teach the next generation.

“I think it’s fun to see the girls take charge and they have fun doing it… this year for whatever reason the varsity girls have been really involved,” Gant said. “They’re really hands-on with them. they’re getting down there with them. They’re taking their time to explain.”

According to Gant, the first and second graders lose interest pretty fast and having high school role models present helps refocus their attention. The entire varsity softball team helped run drills and coach girls through the various required skills.

Gant said eight to 10 of his current varsity softball players all went to this very clinic, which started 10 years ago.

“I think they need that leadership, someone who isn’t just going to sit around and laugh with them, but someone who’s going to be their friend and also helps and teach them the right way to do stuff,” said Mckenzie Egan, a varsity softball player.

Stephanie Andersh, EHS assistant varsity coach, said the clinic is a great way to build excitement for softball at a young age.

“Ellensburg actually has a very good and strong softball program. And what you really want to do within a community is you want girls, little girls to be excited to be like these girls when they get older,” Andersh said. “I think hosting clinics like this is just so great for getting little girls excited to play sports.”

The final day, Friday, was competition day where the girls were tested on hitting distance, running ability, and throwing softballs as far and hard as they could.

Rogers reffed the throwing competition whittling down competitors to the final two. Natala and Remy, the final throwers sunk softball after softball in the net until the deciding throw was missed.

Rogers has fond memories of this completion.

“I won it,” Rogers said. “I even kept the winning ball.”


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