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Tuckahoe Youth Association Opens 53rd Season

EASTCHESTER, N.Y. — Hundreds of excited young baseball and softball players joined their coaches, parents and friends at LaBriola Field under sunny skies Saturday for the official opening of the Tuckahoe Youth Association’s 53rd spring season.

“The coaches, board and parents have all done a great job in getting the league ready to go,” TYA Director Rafael Rivera said before the ceremonies got under way. “We have a great group of volunteers who do a lot of work to keep the league at a high level. TYA goes back to 1959, so this is another great day for the kids and the league.”

Dozens of teams that include more than 600 softball and baseball players, from beginning T-Ball baseball to 11- and 12-year-old Majors players, lined the outfield. Opening day began with the ceremonial first pitch by longtime TYA Director Wayne Wright.

“It’s great to see how well the next generation has made the transition to keep the TYA growing," Wright said after tossing the first pitch. “I was around a long time before giving it up. I am so proud to see how the fields are in such great shape and the league is doing so well. I spent many days and nights here.”

Softball teammates Juliana Bartolini, Samantha Ingram and Savanna Lewis, who play with the TYA B team now known as the Orange Crush, are already 2-1 in early-season play. The girls talked softball while they waited for the ceremonies to begin.

"I love hitting the ball and being up to bat," Bartolini said. "I'm also a pitcher, but I like hitting more."

Ingram, a lanky right-handed pitcher, said she liked the challenge of pitching.

“You have to throw strikes and make good pitches,” Ingram said. “We have a good team. We play good defense and we can hit. It’s going to be a good season.”

Orange Crush coach Stephen Ingram looked forward to the rest of the regular season.

“The girls are into it and really understand how to play the game,” Ingram said. “We have a good group of pitchers and we play defense. This age group gets to play teams from other towns, so we get good competition and the girls seem to be having a good time.”

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