CCSO, Southern Maryland Blue Crabs and Diamond Dream Foundation Team Up to Host Youth Battle of the Beltway Baseball Game
On August 27, 2015, the Charles County Sheriff’s Office School Resource Unit partnered with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs and Diamond Dream Foundation to host The Battle of the Beltway youth baseball game. Students from across Charles County were selected to participate based upon past participation in CCSO programs, great work ethic and a positive attitude. The game was coined The Battle of the Beltway because one team donned Baltimore Orioles jerseys while the other wore Washington Nationals jerseys.
When the kids arrived, each was given his or her own locker to use in the Blue Crabs’ team locker room where team jerseys and hats waited for them to suit up. Sheriff Troy Berry and Charles County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Kimberly Hill gave opening remarks, encouraging the young athletes to work hard both on the baseball field and in the classroom during the new school year. Stan Cliburn, Team Manager for the Blue Crabs, presented Sheriff Berry and Dr. Hill with baseball bats autographed by the entire Blue Crabs team. Then it was time for the kids to head to the field and begin getting ready for the game.
Batting practice began at 9 a.m. after a quick warm up. Once each player had a chance at bat, opening ceremonies commenced. The National Anthem was performed beautifully by Madison Smith, an 8th grade student at General Smallwood Middle School, while the CCSO Honor Guard presented colors on the field. Sheriff Berry had the honor of throwing the ceremonial first pitch before the players were announced onto the field, just like a real game. With School Resource Officers and Blue Crabs players as their coaches, the kids were ready to play ball.
After a thrilling and competitive 7 innings, the Orioles won the game 23-16. The day concluded with lunch and a homerun derby.
“We are so grateful to the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs for their hospitality in opening their facility to us for the day, and to the players that volunteered their time to coach and spend the day with the students,” said Cpl. Chris Cusmano, a CCSO School Resource Officer. “We would also like to extend our sincere gratitude to the Diamond Dream Foundation, who provided the jerseys, hats and gloves for each player, for their tremendous generosity, as well as to Kroger, who provided breakfast and lunch for all participants. It was a day that we will never forget.”
“I was very proud of each of our young athletes who participated,” said Sheriff Troy Berry. “They displayed top-notch sportsmanship, teamwork and positive attitudes, and I have no doubt that they all have very bright futures ahead of them, in school, sports and life.”