SALEM (WSLS 10) – Hundreds of people travel into the Roanoke Valley for the weekend. It’s all for the 2016 Special Olympics Softball Invitational taking place in Salem and Botetourt. It’s where Special Olympic athletes of all ages get to show off their skills and get the chance to compete in a nationally recognized tournament.
28 team from 18 states and two Canadian providences are getting ready to play ball over the next three days. It’s part of the 2016 Special Olympics Softball Invitational bringing in more than 2,000 players, coaches and parents into the Roanoke Valley.
We caught up with one player from the Wisconsin Force and his father who’s coaching the team. Pitcher Corey Ehrgott joined Special Olympics in 2010. Corey told us this is his first time in Virginia and he’s been practicing all summer for this moment.
“We practice hard and we get some good players,” said Corey. “They looked at me and said ‘hey Corey, do you want to join Special Olympics Wisconsin and travel with us?’ I said sure.”
“It’s more than what I expected,” said Wisconsin Force Coach Richard Ehrgott. “I mean, it’s a beautiful facility and it seems well organized. The teams seem very equally played so, I’m looking for a real good weekend.”
After a full day of ball, the players and coaches will be treated to a welcome dinner followed by a dance Friday night starting at 7 at the Salem Civic Center.
The players told us they would love to see nothing more than the stands packed with fans. If you would like to come cheer these athletes the games will continue Saturday and Sunday at Salem’s Moyer Sports Complex and Botetourt Sports Complex.
Via WSLS – Christina Craig