Cayman baseball players shine at Miami camp

| 08/09/2010

(Little League): As part of the continuing commitment of the Cayman Islands Little League Association to promote baseball in Cayman, a specially selected competitive travel team comprising eight boys recently took part in a baseball camp in Miami. Volunteer Coach Jon DaCosta and his dedicated group of 14- to 18-year-olds, who comprise the CILLA International Baseball Team, had been practicing up to five days a week throughout the summer in anticipation of attending the camp, run by ex-AAA, and Minor and Major League Baseball players. “The practices gave these young athletes a chance to continue playing a sport they have learned to love. Our goal is to help them play baseball all year round at a competitive level,” explained DaCosta.

 
“The camp in Miami provided an unparalleled opportunity for the young men to improve their skills and gain some international experience, under expert coaching.”
 
The various coaches at the camp offered the Cayman team instruction in all aspects of the game, in a top training facility. The boys worked hard and soaked up as much as they could during the five days of the camp.
 
Dalton Watler, 17, spoke of how much he gained from the trip. “My experience in Miami was one of a kind and a bit different from my past baseball trips. On this occasion we got to train with top coaches and ex-MLB players.  I felt myself improving dramatically within those five days of intense training. The coaches were great, very enthusiastic and inspired me to become a better player and perhaps pursue a scholarship."
 
Christopher Bennett, 18, added: “I learned how to improve my game play and the fundamentals of the game in general and met some very knowledgeable people.”
 
Dequan Bennett, 14, said, “I thoroughly enjoyed this experience and learned a lot from the coaches on hand. I improved my batting technique,” he added, which was a great help for his participation in the White Sox Skills Competition 2010 held in Chicago on September 4 in which he was able to take first place for his age group.
 
The camp culminated with the boys playing an actual game, said DaCosta. “We played one game against a well-known local team by the name of Fury. Like most baseball teams outside of the Cayman Islands they play baseball practically all day, every day – and we can proudly say that our boys not only fit in, but excelled.”
 
In addition to Dalton, Christopher and Dequan, the team comprised Lance Morris, 18; Mark Chisholm, 15; Tyler Lee, 16; Brandon DaCosta, 14; and Benjamin Stoner, 17.
 
The boys paid for the camp through their own enterprise in gaining corporate and individual sponsorships, without which they wouldn’t have been able to attend.
 
“These eight individuals who often get overlooked due to their ages in a sport not often played here in the Cayman Islands, were hard working, professional, young men who made me very proud of them,” said Coach DaCosta.
 
 
 

 

 
 
“Every single one of the boys learned a great deal about baseball and improved their game tremendously. These players gave 100% effort every time they stepped on the field and were so pleased to have been given the opportunity to represent the Cayman Islands. This is a milestone for us in Cayman and we would like to thank everyone that has supported us and especially to CILLA who paved the way.”
For more information, please feel free to contact Coach Jon DaCosta at (345) 938-7767.
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