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  • Writer's pictureMark Olivito

Excellence in Action: The Hustlin’ Warriors

One of the hard parts of starting a new challenge in life is a temporary separation of the family, selling a house while buying another one. Thankfully, I have a very supportive wife, sister, brother in-law and God Daughter in Warren NJ that make this experience enjoyable along the way.

While going for a Saturday walk, I stumbled across something that made my heart “skip a beat.” The Hustlin’ Warriors baseball field! Home to Watchung Hills Regional High School Baseball team, the field was just the start.

My favorite word HUSTLE drew me in. What I was about to see KEPT me there and fascinated me.

Being around 9:30am on a Saturday I was fortunate to see the 10am start. I’d rather be lucky than good.

  • First, there’s something about a team that clearly is INTO every single pitch. Chanting. Chatter. Clearly pulling for their teammates.

  • Second: There’s something special when the team all gets out of the dugout at once to congratulate their teammates successful accomplishment. Homerun? NO. A BUNT!

I have never seen a team celebration of a bunt before in my life, and I played baseball for 12 years and followed it all my life. Do you think this team is consumed with execution of the fundamentals? Absolutely.

Next observations:

Bat Boy/Team Manager

  • He was into every pitch. He was cheering on every player. Every player ALWAYS had a smile on their face that seemed to be a bit wider when they high fived him.

  • This Team Manager happened to have Down Syndrome.

“It used to be that James Soranno only worked the home games…..Then, Watchung Hills Regional High School head baseball coach Joe Tremarco figured something out. You don’t take the heart and soul of your team out of the dugout just because you’re not playing at home.”

* Source: Echoes Sentinel posted 5/16

One things certain, though. When James eventually does move on, it will leave a big void.

“Because the truth is, I can replace my shortstop,” Tremarco says. “But I can’t replace James.”

* Source: Echoes Sentinel posted 5/16

Next, the Voice of the game.

A PA announcer at a high school baseball game is not common. When you here with GREAT personality and clarity, that is even more rare. And when that announcer has Cerebral Palsy? Well, now we are talking VERY rare.

I encourage you to watch the video of Skylar Weisberg’s story…

“If you work hard, if you have a big heart, and if you have a whole lot of spirit, you can make anything happen. Dreams can come true.” Skylar Weisberg

The Excellence of the Hustlin’ Warriors is a complete team effort. But like all great teams, it starts with the Coach. I do not know Head Coach Joe Tremarco, but I certainly would love too. He gets more than just baseball fundamentals. He gets what it takes to create something truly special. He has found value in hidden places, and created something memorable.

There are examples of greatness everywhere.

Hope you find a Hustlin’ Warriors on your next walk.

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