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Sports

Tourney fun time for youth team

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 21, 2013 at 10:29 AM
LAND O' LAKES -

When the Land O' Lakes 9-10 baseball squad was formed several weeks ago, Manager Mike Peeples wasn't sure what to think.

"We didn't know really what we had," Peeples said.

Turns out Peeples had a pretty good team.

The Land O' Lakes 9-10 team pulled together and advanced to the state tournament, which was played at the team's home complex. But luck finally began to run out, and the team didn't get through pool play, losing two of its three games.

"The athleticism was there, it was just a matter of jelling," Peeples said. "And they did. There was no animosity. They all accepted their roles and they played together."

While clearly disappointed the team didn't advance in last weekend's tournament, Peeples said the enjoyment is what they will take from the experience.

"It was a blast," Peeples said. "They had a good time. The boys had fun. You could see it in their eyes. I don't think they knew what they were accomplishing. They were just having fun."

"It was like summer camp," Land O' Lakes assistant Joe Ricardo said.

Part of the reason the team had so much fun was that Peeples tried to keep the mood light.

"I think a lot of coaches and parents put some pressure on the kids to win," Peeples said. "I just told the kids, 'Give me your best today, and don't worry about yesterday, and don't worry about tomorrow. Whatever happens, happens."

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