By Jill Fox
Parkland Softball has completed their third season, and this one played out a bit differently.
Typically, the Parkland teams play others in Coral Springs and Coconut Creek, but because of Covid-19, this season was done differently. They didn’t have as much participation, and they were unsure of what other cities were doing, so they wanted to keep the games in the city.
“We had a much better turn out than I thought we would have with Covid going on,” said Brian Hierholzer, president of the Parkland U Softball Association.
He and his wife, Meena, decided to create a Parkland Softball League in 2018, when their daughter Adrika, 10, was playing in Coral Springs.
“We were playing in another city and couldn’t understand why,” he said.
Hierholzer, a PharmD, and professor at Nova Southeastern loves the friendly, family-oriented atmosphere of the Parkland League.
“We are not competitive or judgmental,” he said. “The goal is to have fun.”
Hierholzer said they had to monitor the girls, and there was a lot of juggling of schedules because of the amount of rain Parkland endured, but all in all, it went very well.
After the season, the 6U girls’ team was able to play a few games against a team in Coral Springs. Team 88 Senior Care Counselors won the 8U division championship over Team 87 Bob’s News and Books, and Team 118 Yale Financial won the 10/12U division over Team 117 Drone Nerds.
“Brian is doing a tremendous job,” said Andrew Yale, who sponsored his team for the third season, “The league has grown tremendously.”
Yale explained how they combined some age groups this season because of the unknowns due to Covid and had girls between 9 and 13 on the team.
“Watching the older girls encourage the younger ones on the team was really encouraging to see,” said Yale.
Hierholzer is proud of how the league has become a fun and educational environment for the girls and said it is thanks to everyone involved, from the parents to the coaches.
In the spring, the league is planning to go back to their normal age divisions 16U, 12U, 10U, 8U, and 6U, as well as the Parkland Power travel program for more experienced girls.
Hierholzer said the goal is to have everybody of all ability levels come out, play, and have fun.
Spring 2021 registration is now open for girls, starting at age five. The season will run from January 23 through May 1. Visit ParklandSoftball.org to register or contact softballinParkland@gmail.com.
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