Spirited competition at ‘ABAC Summer Olympics’

ABAC head baseball coach Brandon Reeder pushed for sportsmanship and teamwork throughout camp. Not surprisingly, many players ended the camp good friends.

TIFTON — Gee haw, whoa back, back, back: Young baseball players at ABAC.

Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College finished up a week-long baseball camp Friday, one that concluded with a competition coaches Brandon Reeder and Luke Miller named on the spot as the “ABAC Summer Olympics.”

Following four days of practice, Reeder and Miller divided the players up into gold and white teams. They knew their players well; going into the final activity of camp, scrimmage games, the sides had tied in several competitions and were all knotted up in the standings.

Reeder said other events in the competition included speed (running from home to first base), throwing accuracy, throwing distance, fielding ground balls, fielding ground balls and throwing out runners, bunting, hitting accuracy and hitting for distance. Both hitting and throwing for accuracy involved hitting a target on a pitching screen.

The ABAC Summer Olympics were the culmination of a week of work that started with not just drills Monday, but talking. Reeder emphasized skills and playing with sportsmanship. During Friday’s competitions, his work in that department was evident. Some players knew each other from travel baseball teams, while others had never crossed paths. They all cheered for one another and many had earned nicknames.

Friday’s session was a bit shorter than those earlier in the week. It was also the only overcast day, not that players suffered in the heat earlier. After lunch, coaches took players inside for Wiffle Ball. They also got to swim at the Foundation Legacy Pool Complex on campus.

Reeder said his players hailed from all over southern Georgia. Some were local, a handful were from Thomas County, one was from Camilla. Two players carpooled from Telfair County.

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