Editor: Congratulations to the South Riding All-Stars on qualifying for the Little League World Series. Those of us who are active in diamond sports in Northern Virginia are particularly excited about their accomplishment. The second-paragraph statement in your coverage Aug. 15 that they are the first team from Virginia to qualify for the tournament in a quarter century requires an important asterisk, however, because it fails to acknowledge that the McLean Little League Softball all-stars in 2013 finished as runners-up in the nationally televised Little League Softball World Series Championship game in Portland, OR.
The state of Virginia, and our region in particular, has a robust softball culture that produces nationally-ranked travel teams. Much of this plays out on Loudoun County fields at places like Philip Bolen Park and Potomack Lakes Sportsplex every weekend in the autumn and Spring. Many girls graduate from these teams to play Division 1 at top NCAA programs. Kathryn Sandercock, the pitcher on that 2013 McLean Little League All-Stars squad, for instance, now plays for Florida State University. It’s also worth noting that the Women’s College World Series draws more viewers than the College World Series of baseball.
So a tip of the hat to the boys of South Riding. I am cheering them on. But please don’t overlook the girls and their accomplishments.
Ryan J. Donmoyer, Purcellville