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Alumni game to support baseball program

UPDATE, Feb. 25: As of noon on Friday, Feb. 25, the baseball game and dinner have been canceled due to stormy weather. Please return to this article for more updates on a future baseball alumni event.

The baseball program will host its annual alumni baseball game, where varsity baseball players take on previous players, at 1 p.m. on Feb. 26.

After the game, dinner will take place at 4 p.m. in the Jackie Johnson Room. Although the game is free to attend, dinner costs $10 per person or $30 for a family of four.

According to Peggy Lee, mother of senior varsity player Stowe Empereur and one of the parents hosting the event, the alumni game offers students and families an annual gathering to bond and raise money for the baseball program.

“We are inviting the whole school, friends and families,” Lee said. “The alumni game is a kind of kick-off game to start the baseball season for FCS. It starts the spring season off with a bang. It is always fun to watch, and we will intoduce our new 2011 team.”

Lee says that although the game is an enjoyable way to start the season, players on both teams take the competition seriously.

“Watching the game is fun, but the players are really serious about playing a winning game,” Lee said. “Although the alumni are older and out of shape, they think they can win.”

Alumnus Casey Belmont, ’02, who is the brother of varsity player Cooper Belmont, ’12, will be coaching the alumni players.

“For the older guys, we do not get many opportunities to compete on the athletic field anymore,” Casey said. “This game gives us a chance to have some fun and also support the baseball program.”

Casey says that he is looking forward to coaching the alumni team despite some obstacles they will have to overcome.

“The biggest challenge to coaching the alumni team is simply finding guys who are available to play,” Casey said. “After high school, life only gets busier with school, work and kids. I am sure the toughest thing will be the fact that we are older and out of shape. Running the bases used to seem easy, but now it would be a real accomplishment.”

At the event, new head coaches Thomari Story-Harden and Casey Padgett will be there to introduce themselves to students and parents.

“I want to see the alumni play and see their skills,” Story-Harden said. “I am excited for the varsity boys’ season as well, because coach Padgett and I have years of experiences and we can help the players a lot.”

Lee encourages everyone to show up with their friends and families and to cheer on both varsity and alumni players, saying it offers the chance to display school spirit.

“I encourage many students to show school spirit and watch the game,” Lee said. “Baseball is the all-American game, so it will be fun to watch. And seeing the alumni will give you a peek at where you will be in 20 years.”

According to Lee, students and families serve a central role in the support of sporting events and the sports programs on campus.

“FCS is a family,” Lee said. “Family and friends are part of all our sporting events. We need alumni, their families as well as current students and their families to keep the sports programs going. We all know how important sports are to any school.”

For more information on baseball, read the May 27, 2010 article, Junior pursues baseball leadership.

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