Little League Electing 2010 Officers

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Former Payson High School football coach Josh Anderson, now head coach at Dakota State University, admits he’s disappointed by the decisions of a former Longhorn star, another from Blue Ridge and a third from Chino Valley, to quit the DSU team after originally committing to play for the university.

“All three would have been starters for us,” he said.

Ex-Longhorn Shane Keith quit just a few days into preseason training, and ex-Blue Ridge standout Steel Armstrong and Garret Worster, formerly of Chino Valley, walked away after the first game.

The deflections meant, “we had to convert a running back into a safety, a fullback into a middle linebacker and an outside linebacker into a safety,” Anderson said. “Our defense has been good, but not near the way we should have been with those three on our team.”

Most disappointing for Anderson, he said, was that the three had a support system in place at the school that would have guided and helped them with both athletics and academics.

Little League meets tomorrow

The 2009 Little League Board of Directors is scheduled to meet at 5:30 p.m. tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct. 28, in the Payson Elementary School cafeteria to mull over the past season and tie up loose ends.

At about 6 p.m., a public meeting will begin to elect officers for the 2010 year.

Outgoing Little League President Slade Gibson emphatically calls the election of new officers critical to the future of the league, and one “we all need to take seriously knowing how far we have come over the years.”

Gibson also calls his decision to resign after several years leading the program a difficult one.

He says he is stepping down because, “I don’t feel that I will be able to devote the time necessary to stay on top of everything next year.”

In a letter to current board members, he asked that they scour the community to find a qualified individual who has the time and energy needed to serve as president.

Gibson is not the only board member resigning. Some others will also be stepping away, prompting the need for new volunteers to fill a number of positions, including softball equipment officer, softball coaching coordinator and others.

The league currently has 20 officers, but Gibson continues to be uncertain which ones will return for the new season.

For those who agree to continue, Gibson said, “I am very grateful.”

Gibson is also creating several new softball positions to relieve some of the confusion of the past season and take pressure off of the volunteers.

“I feel that will help us out on the softball side,” he said.

Softball, which Lady Longhorn coach Will Dunman heads as vice president, was added to the Little League program just two years ago and is still suffering through some growing pains.

Although Gibson is walking away, he’s promised to stay around long enough to make the transition to the new president a smooth one.

Play Chaparral

A golden opportunity awaits golfers who’ve never had the opportunity to play the prestigious Chaparral Golf Course, designed by Gary Panks. The links chance arrives Nov. 6 during the playing of the Community Chest Golf tournament.

The tournament tees off with an 11 a.m. shotgun start and will be played in a two-person scramble format.

One half-hour prior to tee time, a registration and light lunch will be held in the clubhouse.

Following the tournament, at about 4 p.m., a barbecue reception complete with entertainment, beer and selected wines will cap the festivities.

Each player may bring a guest to the reception.

The entry fee is $250, which includes golf, lunch and prizes.

For those unfamiliar with Chaparral Pines, the 18-hole course features 7,019 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 72. The course rating is 73.2 and it has a slope rating of 138.

The Community Chest is held each year to benefit charities in and around Payson.

This year, the benefactors are Friends of Payson Parks and Recreation and the Friends of Tonto Natural Bridge.

To register for the tournament, contact Sharon Strople (strople@gmail.com) from the Friends of Parks and Recreation or Derek Shreiner (Derek.shreiner@nbarizona.com) from the Friends of Tonto Natural Bridge.

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