LIHU‘E — Kaua‘i Senior Softball League President Joe Bertucci aims to complete the league’s 26-week, regular-season schedule.
Though the league plans on resuming the regular season, it canceled the 45th Annual Hawai‘i Senior Softball Tournament scheduled for Aug. 3 to 6, at the county fields in Hanapepe, ‘Ele‘ele and Kaumukani.
“The state tournament is on a rotating schedule, with each team (island) hosting the event every four years,” Bertucci said. “In 2021, the tournament was scheduled for O‘ahu to host, but I am happy to say that we’ve secured the 2021 tournament for the island of Kaua‘i. We have received the backing from only Maui and the Big Island with O‘ahu wanting to do their own thing.”
The season was halted after week eight in the first round due to COVID-19, but they continued to maintain a dialogue with the county, hoping to make a return possible, Bertucci said.
League Coordinator Mike Curtis said they hope to complete the first round of play, and if they are allowed to continue, they will finish the season and have a small playoff.
Currently, the softball league doesn’t have anything in writing as to when they can resume play.
In the interim, players gathered together to practice and, according to Bertucci, were mindful of various social-distancing protocols.
In a hypothetical scenario that the league does restart, it will follow the newly formatted, post-COVID-19 regulations written by the U.S. Specialty Sports Association along with the county of Kaua‘i’s expected policies superseding any other rules.
“When we get to play will be determined by our mayor, and we will follow the guidelines handed out to us,” Bertucci said. “If that means we play with no fans, then so be it, as each of our practices have currently had no fans in attendance.”
One of the major reasons for wanting to return to action amidst the pandemic is the mental health of the seniors who play the game, Bertucci said of the value of the game.
“The vast majority of our teams and league players are chomping at the bit to resume our softball activities,” Bertucci said. “Many of the players are itching to get back out there. It’s not so much the playing, winning or losing, but the camaraderie of being around guys you’ve known most of your life or new friends you’ve made over the years.”
Jason Blasco, sports reporter, can be reached at 245-0437 or email@example.com.
Source: The Garden Island