Dear Wasco Girls Fastpitch Family Members, Players, Alumni, Sponsors and Supporters:
As we enter our 30th year as an organization and my 20th year here, we can’t help but reflect back on all the amazing memories and thank God for every little girl who has come through this program whether it be for a season or until her college playing career is over. We are truly blessed to have played a role in so many players’ lives. We were the first to introduce fall ball into the area. We were the first to introduce a light travel organization (Wasco Warriors) into the area. Many have followed in our footsteps and we give kudos to many of them for the opportunity to promote the love of our sport. The original love of the game has to come from somewhere and for many softball players, it has started here. We have always said that our coaches are second to none. They TRULY give unselfishly to the love of the game, the players, the parents, and our organization; with no motive other than the altruistic love for the game to sharing our reputation. We are looking forward to continuing that relationship with them as they continue to share their passion with you and your player.
Our girls come everywhere from Dekalb to Aurora to Schaumburg to Crystal Lake and all areas in between. We’ve done our best to give every player an opportunity to grow in the sport that they love with respect and dignity. While everyone has hiccups along the way, we think we have held steadfast to our beliefs that “Why settle for anything less than the best for your daughter. We believe that girls should be empowered and strengthened. If you play a sport, you play it like an athlete. Athletes are not defined by gender but by one's commitment and desire to achieve success through setting and achieving personal goals via competition. And with competition comes failure and success and how to handle both situations with dignity and grace is our goal. Here at Wasco, we play by the same rules as any athlete. If you hit a homerun, you earned it. If you hit a triple, you earned it. If you struck out, you earned it. We do not believe in handicapping a player because she is female. We believe in learning, teaching, growing, respecting. While we are a recreational league, we believe in teaching the player to give everything your best effort every time and that we are a part of a TEAM and that means a player should make themselves better, they make their teammates better, and they make the game better. WHILE having fun.”
So with that said, we are excited to announce that we are partnering with the Silver Hawks and Dennison Silver Hawk Travel organization and are now the Wasco Silver Hawks! This will give our players a complete experience; from rec (in-house) to light travel to JV to Varsity to college opportunities and beyond and here’s how:
- From pre-K to 12th grade, if a player wants to play and stay in-house, here we are!
- From 8U-16U, if a player wants to play and stay “light travel” with an abbreviated schedule and smaller financial requirement than full time travel, here we are!
- From 8U-18U, if a player wants to and makes our full time travel teams with an extended season, here we are!
- And finally, from 14U-18U, a player envisions playing in college with the hope of receiving scholarships and makes the Dennison Silver Hawks, here we are!
Last year, the St Charles Angels merged with the Silver Hawks with much success and we are so excited to be included in this clear, concise vision for all area softball players from all levels! So what does this mean for you and your player?
- We will still be playing at our home fields
- You will still see a lot of the same, familiar faces
- Your player will have tons more opportunities to train and play not only with additional college players but with more options at our indoor training facility.
- Your player will have a clear-cut path from pre-k to college exposure teams if desired.
- Your player can still play in-house or continue onto full time travel (and everything in between) with a precise path to their desired success.
- And your player will get more night games (under the lights).
- Everything option under one roof! You and your player decide what’s right for you!
Now is the time to move forward with this exciting adventure! As always, it takes a village. Join us in volunteering to make this time the best possible opportunity for your player and family. As you can imagine, we’ll need a few more Commissioners, Board Members, Directors, and “Where Needed,” to embark on this exciting journey! We’ve laid out everything your daughter may need or want without any additional expenses or inconveniences! What could be better?!!!!! We hope are as excited as we are to be a part of this premier organization!
From the Desk of the President…..(Great article from which we can all learn - thank you Ann Josephson)
As the great writer on success Napoleon Hill wrote, “Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.”
(Hint: The best of the best always choose the second option)
- Sacrifice vs. Choice. Sacrifice refers to giving something up for the betterment of others, not for oneself. (It also smacks of a victim mentality as if what one is doing is something being done to them). We are talking about sports here, not building water wells in remote Africa or feeding caring for lepers in a remote colony. Choice is a word that comes from a place of power. To be the best of the best, an athlete chooses to go to practice instead of playing video games all afternoon or attending every high school football game. Michael Hyatt calls this a shift in the language of duty to the language of privilege.
- Pressure vs. Drive. Pressure comes from an external force; drive comes from within. It is seldom one sees a great athlete who shrinks in the face of what is commonly referred to as pressure. Why? Because the best of the best don’t experience pressure as pressure, instead what they experience is drive—that force that propels them to focus on their own excellence to the exclusion of all distractions, including what their competitors are doing.
- Failure vs. Setback. Things don’t always work out. Is it a fiasco or just an obstacle? The best of the best look at failure as feedback or a setback, not as a catastrophe or the end of the road.
- Short-term vs. Long-term goals. While short-term goals are useful in urging motivation in spurts, successful athletes and their parents have a long-eye view for goals. A rough workout, meet or even season does not necessarily indicate a reason to change course if the general direction of the plan is still a positive one. The best of the best remember to see the forest through the trees.
- Criticism vs. Coaching. Is a coach’s tough-to-hear words a personal insult or a bad score a diatribe on one’s value as a human being? Or are these both pieces of feedback for an athlete to consider and decide how to incorporate into training or competing moving forward? I am certain you can guess which approach the best of the best athlete takes!
- Tragedy vs. Disappointment. There is a difference between a tragedy and a disappointment. What happened 16 years ago (9/11/2001) was a tragedy. Not getting moved up to level 7 is not a tragedy, it is a disappointment. The best of the best keep these things in perspective.
- Difficulty vs. Challenge. When a person comes to something that takes more effort than is typical or has a shortcoming that places them at a competitive disadvantage, it can be classified as a difficulty or a challenge. A difficulty means the task is “hard to do”, where as a challenge means that it is “a stimulating task or problem.” People who are working toward being the best of the best see these moments or faults as challenges, not difficulties. They rise to fight them and find that struggle motivating and exciting. Any Paralympian is a testament to this word choice.
- Competition vs. Motivation. Too often I’ve seen a family become upset when there are accomplished athletes within the same program. The green-eyed monster rears its ugly head and can send that family packing because the “competition” during practice is too much. What they fail to understand is that to be the best of the best it is ideal to have the motivation of other excellent athletes with similar goals in your training group. The best of the best are not only unafraid to train with the “competition,” they know that together they will push each other to work harder and be better.
- Winning vs. Celebrating. While winning certainly feels great, the best of the best focus on celebrating when they achieve their goals independent of the outcome. I’ve seen some of my best gymnasts have mediocre meets and walk away with gold medals. In turn, I’ve watched them have incredible meets and place lower on the podium. The best of the best are actually less pleased with those gold medals, favoring the accomplishment of their personal goals. In a team sport, the best of the best are far less concerned with scoring titles, being named to an All-Star team or MVPs and are singularly focused on making their team World Champions.
- Quit vs. End. Quitting is giving up in the middle of something. Ending is deciding something no longer suits you and that it is time to move on. Successful athletes don’t quit, but may chose to end either by retiring or reinventing themselves through how they approach the game (i.e. Kobe Bryant’s transition from leading the league in scoring to working on increasing his assists), by transitioning to a different sport (i.e. gymnasts who transition to diving, dance or any other number of sports) or taking the skills and attitudes honed in the pursuit of being a high level athlete and applying them to school or a career. (Fun fact: 95% of Fortune 500 executives participated in high school sports). At some point or another athletes will retire; retiring is not quitting, it’s ending. Please, please, please, if you take no other piece of advice from this article, take this one and do not use the word “quit” to refer to your athlete when he or she ends or retires from a sport or activity.
Words have power. Choose them carefully.