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Kyle & team in dugout
Tenth-grader Kyle LaTorre, far right, with his buddy Nigal Davis from UVA and the rest of the Teal Team, rest in the dugout between innings.
Dominick home run
Dominick White (center) gives one of the coaches a fist-bump after crossing home plate with his buddy, Nathan Morris (left).
Paige at bat
Paige Hess takes a swing before running to first base with her buddy, Trey Durrer.
Maren home run
Maren Kaiser high-fives the catcher after a home run, with younger sister Elorie just behind her.
Elorie at bat
Elorie Kaiser takes a swing at the incoming ball.
Jeyda at bat
Jeyda Rogers winds up for the swing.
James at second
James Sides takes second base with help from buddies Jennifer Argueta and Rubi Sorto.
Branden & Elorie
Branden Tapley (far right) and his buddy, Cole Peachey, cheer on teammate Elorie Kaiser and her buddy Liam Deegan (a UVA student) after crossing home plate.
Kyle at bat
Tenth-grader Kyle LaTorre winds up for the swing as buddy Nigal Davis of UVA looks on.
Sofija home run
Sofija Nishikawa fist-bumps the catcher after a successful home run guided by buddy MacKenzie Pigg of UVA.
Maggie third base
Maggie Nishikawa celebrates her home run while rounding third base with buddy Ashley Deese.
Dominick home run
Dominick White gets a helping hand on his home run from buddy Nathan Morris.
Elorie takes second
Elorie Kaiser dashes to second base with her buddy, Liam Deegan of UVA.
Timothy at bat
Timothy Andrews takes the plate as buddy Meghan McMorris takes a step back.
Lilly at bat
Eleventh-grader Lilly Brookman bunts the ball to take first.
Maggie at bat
Sixth-grader Maggie Nishikawa watches buddy Ashley Deese demonstrate proper batting stance.
Sofija at bat
Second-grader Sofija Nishikawa gets help with hitting from buddy MacKenzie Pigg of UVA.
Maggie & Sofija
Sisters Maggie (second from left) and Sofija Nishikawa (second from right) celebrate with their buddies, Ashley Deese (far left) and UVA student MacKenzie Pigg (far right).
Dominick White and buddy Nathan Morris receive their medals at the end of the game.
Lilly Brookman and buddy Gannon Robey celebrate a successful game as they receive their medals.
Branden Tapley and buddy Cole Peachey receive medals for their contributions to the Navy Team at Saturday's game.
Buddy-Ball Bash 1
Twelve players played in Saturday’s game, and all players and buddies received a medal. The Greene County Youth Center hopes to form an ongoing league for Buddy-Ball in spring 2022.
Buddy-Ball Bash 2
Members of both teams gather after the match for a big thumbs-up.
The Bambino Buddy-Ball Bash was held on the beautiful fall afternoon of Oct. 2 at the Greene County Youth Center in Ruckersville. Twelve players with a range of physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities formed two teams, each paired with a Buddy to help them swing the bat, run the bases or catch the ball.
There was no score and no outs; each player got a chance to hit and run the bases each inning, and everyone played defense as well. Each player got five chances to hit a coach-thrown pitch with help from their buddy or could hit off a tee. Many of the buddies were members of the Youth Center’s 18U team and three came from UVA’s masters in Adaptive PE program.
“It helps (the kids) develop the social-emotional side and the gross motor skills that are needed to play,” said Greene County Adaptive PE teacher Sharon Gregory. “It gives the participants that rite of passage of being a teammate and getting to participate, wear a jersey and things like that.”
Gregory, who helped to organize the event along with Greene County Youth Center President Kevin Marshall, said the pair are still looking for more players and volunteers for the spring.
“We’re going to make this event in the fall a regular thing, but we’re also starting a league in the spring, so this was kind of the kickoff,” Gregory said. “We had 18 sign-ups so we were really excited about that; for different reasons (a few) kids couldn’t make it today, but I feel like that’s a great start to getting the awareness out there.”