State Farm, Big O Tire Take Gold In Tournament

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The Town of Payson-sponsored Women’s Adult Basketball League season has wrapped up with the crowning of champions in both recreation and competitive divisions.

In the recreation division season-ending double elimination tournament, State Farm Insurance Ted Pettet Office defeated WWB for the title.

In the competitive division, Big O Tire thumped Serves You Right in the gold medal finale.

Barbara Underwood captained the Ted Pettet team that also included Anna Van Zile, Shawnee Bauer, Judy Perham, Sydney Wilbanks, Dawn Guerrero and Kayla Woolwine.

Shelli McKenzie, Rachel Creighton, Jill Richard, Jayden Walden, Katelyn Curtis, Julie Eckhardt, Megan Burris and Morgan Chilson were on the Big O championship squad.

FAN club donates

The Payson Friends And Neighbors (FAN) club Payson High School booster group released its 2011 report, which showed a total of $31,495 was earned and donated to various extracurricular activities and sports.

Among the fund-raising activities were the Jack Morris Memorial Golf Tournament, a quilt raffle, 50/50 raffle, basketball fish fry, cheerleader-hosted burrito dinner, concessions by the cross-country team and a barbecue dinner hosted by the Lady Longhorn softball team.

Next on the fund-raising agenda is the sale of 2012 Payson Longhorn Cards, which entitle holders to receive discounts at various businesses around town.

The cards are $15 each and are available from any PHS track or baseball team members.

“This is a great fund-raiser for these two programs and offers holders great discounts,” said FAN club president Debbie Brown.

The FAN club meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Wednesday of each month at Tiny’s Restaurant.

The next meeting is March 14.

The public is invited to attend and become involved in supporting extracurricular activities.

Baseball bats undergo changes

Longhorn baseball fans might notice this season that the “ping” sound formerly heard when an aluminum bat struck a baseball now has much deeper tone.

The change in pitch is because Arizona high school players are now required to swing new and safer bats that meet Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution (BBCOR) standards.

The new standards are stricter than previous requirements and are expected to cut down on the number of home runs hit each year. College players used the new bats for the first time last season and home run totals fell.

The new bats are also expected to cut down on the number of injuries that occur when players are struck by batted balls.

With the new bats, coaches around the state are stressing, as PHS coach Scott Novack does, simply putting the bat on the ball and not swinging for the fences.

All BBCOR bats have a smaller barrel than their counterparts and feel heavier because more weight is distributed to the end of the barrel.

It is expected that many composite barrel bats will not meet the BBCOR standards and will not be legal.

National Federation of State High School Associations officials predict the new bats will “minimize risk, improve play and increase teaching opportunities.”

NFSHSA officials also say, “After working with the NCAA and having access to its research, we’ve concluded it’s in our best interest to make this change.”

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