Last year, you might have figured, Anderson's Riverfield All-Star softball team caught lightning in a bottle.
The team, comprised of 11- and 12-year-old girls, won the state and regional championships and finished fourth at the Little League Softball World Series in Portland, Ore. It was the best finish ever for a local youth softball team.
Only four players from that team returned this year to play for Riverfield, so you can be forgiven if you thought the team's glory years were one and done.
But the Riverfield All-Stars are back at it again. This week, they repeated as state champions, recovering from a first-round loss to capture the title in Lebanon. Today, they embark on the nine-team regional tournament in Indianapolis. Riverfield begins play against the Wisconsin champion at 2:30 p.m. at Ruben F. Glick Little League Central Region field.
Coaches Seth Kelley, Brock Hubble and Brad Duncan have done a masterful job of molding this year's edition of the Riverfield All-Stars into another powerhouse. But the players themselves deserve the lion's share of credit for the hard work they've put into becoming another championship team. Certainly, the lingering residue of the 2012 team's successes have helped to give them confidence in their ability to compete against the best.
If the Riverfield girls can make it through their five-team pool, then win the regional title, they'll be off to Portland again for another shot at national glory.
If they don't make it out of the regional? Well, they'll still serve as an example to local kids — and adults — that sustained excellence can be accomplished through hard work and teamwork.
In summary Win or lose at the regional, the Riverfield All-Star softball team is a shining example of the value of hard work and teamwork.