Rowan in senior softball finals
By Shavonne Potts
Two teams from Rowan County competed in the N.C. Senior Games State Final Softball tournament this week.
The Salisbury/Rowan Senior Games teams ó Godley’s Garden Center and Carpet Queens participated in Raleigh at the Walnut Creek Softball Park. This marked the first year competing at this level for both teams.
They did not win in the finals, but “played good, fair ball” and are ready for next year’s state finals, said Phyllis Loflin-Kluttz, senior games coordinator.
The softball park has nine fields, where several teams were able to play games simultaneously. The tournament ran Aug. 31-Sept. 2.
Loflin-Kluttz said the first day’s game was canceled because of rain. The men’s team won one of its games. The men and women’s teams went up against players who’ve been playing for many years.
“Most of the teams have nine years under their belt. But the other teams were quite impressed with Salisbury,” she said.
There are 700 participants in both Silver Arts and Senior Games. This year alone, there were 172 new participants.
These are programs in which local residents like to participate, Loflin-Kluttz said.
“More people are retiring and they are staying active. We are a health-conscious society. We are about staying active, mentally and physically,” Loflin-Kluttz said.
Qualification for next year’s softball state finals will be held in the spring and summer of 2010 at Salisbury/Rowan Senior Games Softball.
The National Senior Olympics was held in Palo Alto, Calif. Aug. 1-15.
Rowan County participants competed against qualifiers from 49 other states and Canada.
“We are honored to have this special group of winners represent Rowan County at the National Senior Olympics,” Loflin-Kluttz said.
The following competed and placed in the national events:
– Don Anderson, 19th in men’s 75 and older golf.
– Gus Andrews, 17th in men’s 65 and older golf.
– Jim Epperson, 4th in men’s 70 and older 1,500 meter race walk and 5th in the men’s 70 and older 5K race walk.
– Hazel Trexler-Campbell, women’s 85 and older, 100 meter dash, bronze medal; long jump, bronze medal; shot put, gold medal; horseshoes, gold medal; discus, gold medal.
The Senior Games and Silver Arts programs are sponsored by the Rowan County Parks and Recreation Department.