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Williams Little League season in jeopardy
Volunteers desperately needed before registration can begin

Williams Little League T-ball players get ready to take the field in a game in June 2021. (Wendy Howell/WGCN)

Williams Little League T-ball players get ready to take the field in a game in June 2021. (Wendy Howell/WGCN)

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — The Williams Little League season is in jeopardy with sign ups delayed because of a lack of volunteers.

The league has had trouble filling the mandatory board positions required for upper league levels.

With a lot of turnover in the Williams Little League Board, the remaining members have been seeking replacements. Dedicated members, with some volunteering for more than seven years, recently stepped down as many of their children are no longer actively playing in the league.

“Unfortunately fulfillment of those positions was slower and less fruitful than expected," said Williams Little League Information Officer Jenni Rigo.

Due to the lack of volunteers signing up, the league has had to delay registration. Typically registration opens Jan. 1 of each year

“We have held back on opening the registration, trying to fill these additional board positions and (other) volunteers that we need in order to open the upper league levels,” Rigo said.

The board held a meeting on Jan. 17 in hopes to fill the final positions.

“We have a lot of families in the community where little league is the summer time event that their children really look forward to, gets them back to their friends during summer months and gets them involved in organized sport which is great for development mentally and physically for all the children,” Rigo said. “It’s a staple that the community should be providing the families within Williams to really feel that team atmosphere.”

The minor leagues and T-ball have been unaffected by this, as they do not require as many positions to operate.

Once opened, registration will close March 31. Practices typically begin late April or May for the official season. Games usually begin in May.

The league is always looking for more help. Anyone is eligible to be a volunteer.

The Williams Little League has four divisions for boys and girls ages 4-15. Parents can use the Little League Age Calculator (https://www.littleleague.org/play-little-league/determine-league-age/) to determine which division a child should be placed. T-Ball and Minors are classified under Little League Baseball.

Often, a family’s first introduction to Little League is the T-Ball program. T-Ball is the entry level division for players, league age 4-6. The experience is grounded in fun, fitness and fundamentals.

The Minor League baseball program is for boys and girls league age 6-9. A player who is six for the current season and has played a year in T-Ball is eligible to participate in a coach-pitch division.

The Little League Majors division is for boys league age 9 -12. The diamond used is a 60-foot diamond and the pitching distance is 46 feet. The Little League Majors softball division is for girls league age 9-12. The field uses a 60-foot diamond and a 40 foot pitching distance.

The Junior League baseball division is a program for boys league age 13-15, using a conventional 90-foot diamond with a pitching distance of 60 feet, 6 inches. The Junior league softball division is a program for players league age 13-15, and uses a conventional 60-foot diamond with a 43-foot pitching distance.

Parents are strongly encouraged to become involved in Little League. After completing a Little League volunteer application and passing a required background check, parents may help with practices, and be eligible as coaches, managers, umpires, local league board members and other volunteer positions within the league. Families are also encouraged to volunteer to help staff the cook shack during the season, general help around the field including hanging sponsorship banners, announce games, scorekeeping and more.

Williams Little League is part of the Diamondbacks grant program, which completely outfits the players in Diamondback uniforms.

Each team is represented by different colors and each player will be able to choose their size.

Skills assessment dates, which are required for all Majors and Juniors baseball and softball players, are scheduled for Feb. 26 and March 5 at 1 p.m. at Cureton Park. New Majors and Juniors players must attend one of those dates. There is no skills assessment for T-ball and Minors players.

Juniors baseball and softball teams will begin practices once the high school seasons end.

Families can register using prior years’ accounts. Anyone who has trouble registering can email the board at williamslittleleague@gmail.com

More information and to register for Little League programs visit williamslittleleague.com and register online.

Completed volunteer applications with a copy of a driver’s license can be emailed to williamslittleleague@gmail.com.

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