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Jr Belles 12U softball returns to the practice field

Jr Belles 12U coach Shelly Byrn hits ground balls to her players during Tuesday's practice. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)
Jr Belles 12U coach Shelly Byrn hits ground balls to her players during Tuesday's practice. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)(KNOP)
Published: Jun. 2, 2020 at 9:18 PM CDT
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Travel softball practices began in Nebraska this week. The Jr Belles 12 & Under team held their first practice in the heat, but it was a productive practice.

"It feels great to be back out," head coach Shelly Byrn said Tuesday. "Yesterday was our first day back together and it had to be the hottest day of the year, but it was a lot of fun. I think they're excited to be back, there's a lot of enthusiasm, and I think it's good for their mental health to be back out doing things they love."

Byrn said it was good for not only the girls to get back on the field, but for her as well.

"I think it means a lot to the girls to be back out, not just the girls but myself too, I've missed them I've missed their silliness, they're just a lot of fun," Byrn said.

The players were excited to get back on the field for the first time in months.

"It was fun, I was excited, and I'm ready to get back on the field," said first baseman Colbie Baade.

"I had a lot of fun. I'm just glad that I can hang out with my softball buddies," said second baseman Allie Jones. "I just really enjoyed coming out here and being able to see them."

The Jr Belles finished in third place in the state as a 10 & Under team, but the game changes for them bumping up and age group, including moving the pitchers' mound back, and playing with a bigger ball. However, Byrn gave her players workouts to do during the break, and she was pleased with what she saw in the team's first practice back.

"A lot of them did work outs throughout the whole time, a lot went out with their parents. The pitchers were throwing, they were hitting, and they came back actually in pretty good shape," Byrn said. "We had the pitchers throw a little bit yesterday, I didn't really have any concerns, we've just got to get them into pitching game shape."

The Jr Belles open their season on June 20, when they travel to Cheyenne for a tournament.

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