Where there’s a Will…

St. Louis is heating up to up to record levels this summer and so is good sportsmanship. The Sportsmanship Brigade found its way to Assumption parish in South St. Louis County on Wednesday night. Green Park Lutheran and St. Simon met in a 6th grade baseball matchup. Both teams played hard and showed the utmost respect for one another on the field. However, the shining light of this game was the guy behind the plate. Will Groeller, 22, is a young umpire who shows maturity well beyond his years. Coaches and parents often view young umpires and referees as easy targets – people they can manipulate fairly easily. The coaches of both teams could have easily been the same age as Groeller’s dad, but the young umpire had complete control of the strike zone and the game overall.

Maintaining order is one way to ensure kids have a positive sports experience. Parents and coaches yelling at officials and vice versa often mar youth sports. The athletes of Green Park Lutheran and St. Simon were in no such danger. Their game started and ended on-time and without incident. While some may see this as a ho-hum occurrence, the Brigade saw this as the mark of an expert game official. For that reason, the Brigade recognized Groeller for his efforts. He is an asset to the St. Louis CYC program and any parents or coaches who see him on the field should know their children are in very capable hands.

Brigade member Erica Clark with Will Groeller

The Sportsmanship Brigade is a group of Sports Commission volunteers who attend youth sporting events looking for acts of good sportsmanship. Athletes, coaches, parents, fans and officials who exhibit good sportsmanship are rewarded with a certificate of recognition and a gift card to a local business. For more on the Brigade, including scheduling and volunteering information, please visit sportsmanship.org or call 314-345-5130. Until next time…

Be a Good Sport!

-Sol

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