Erica Good, 14, plays catch Friday with her mom and softball coach, Laurie Good. Tryouts for Steamboat Springs’ Little League softball teams are set for May 5 and 6.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

Erica Good, 14, plays catch Friday with her mom and softball coach, Laurie Good. Tryouts for Steamboat Springs’ Little League softball teams are set for May 5 and 6.

Girls softball leagues taking shape in Steamboat

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Erica Good, 14, and mom and softball coach Laurie Good got into the sport two years ago when it launched in Steamboat Springs.

— As with any other sport, momentum can be everything in softball.

For the young softball wing of Steamboat Springs’ Little League club, that momentum is about more than a hot hitter or an on-fire pitcher. Despite beginning just two years ago with two teams that spanned several age classifications, the softball program hopes to field six teams this year, two for each division.

“It’s a pretty popular sport,” said Laurie Good, who began coaching in that first season. “It gives girls an alternative to soccer, which is really the only other team sport offered in the summer.”

The program hopes this summer can yet again foster growth, and girls interested in playing can attend tryouts set for early next month. Tryouts will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 5 at the Emerald Park fields and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. May 6 at the Steamboat Springs Middle School fields in Strawberry Park.

A mandatory clinic for coaches will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 6 at the middle school fields. A draft is scheduled for May 7 and a parents meeting for May 8.

For the Good family, the growth of softball in Steamboat has been nothing but sweet.

Laurie Good’s 14-year-old daughter, Erica, wasn’t one for soccer and was there for the softball founding.

“She had a good arm and wanted to play softball,” Good said. “So, I became a coach when we started the league.”

Now, Erica will play in Steamboat’s top age classification: the juniors division for 13- and 14-year-old players.

A year ago, the program featured three teams, one each for the minor division (9- and 10-year-olds), the majors division (11- and 12-year-olds) and the juniors team.

The teams played squads from across the region, often caravanning on weekday nights to Kremmling to split travel duties with teams from Grand, Gilpin and Summit counties.

As a Triple Crown hub, Steamboat’s plenty familiar with summer softball. Seeing its own girls take the field, however, is something new.

“One of the things that’s helped the girls is all the Triple Crown tournaments,” Good said. “We brought our teams down to watch the Triple Crown girls fast pitch championship game so they could really see the ultimate level of how this game is played. That really got the girls excited.”

Now, organizers are hoping another season of excitement can unfold and add to the strength of the rapidly growing program.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com

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