Ave Maria

Sundays on the Diamond: Ave Maria’s Unofficial Adult Co-Ed Softball Team

Every Sunday morning, a group of more than two dozen Ave Maria residents convene in South Park for casual, lively games of slow-pitch softball. The gatherings are delightfully informal; in fact, the group doesn’t even have an official name.   Group of people gathering on a softball field

The co-ed games attract a diverse crowd, from former collegiate athletes to senior citizens and even children, fostering a sense of inclusivity and community spirit. Ave Maria resident Justin Chervets is a regular, “We welcome everybody in our community,” he said.

Town resident Steve Cohen at 67 years participates in the game every Sunday, “I just enjoy playing the sport,” Cohen said. “Something different. There’s just so much golf, there’s just so much pickleball, just so much weightlifting, jogging, swimming you can do.” He has no problem playing with much younger people. “Not yet,” he joked.

Woman wearing a softball gloveThree things remain constant across generations: camaraderie, exercise and fun. Competitiveness inevitably creeps in, but it’s balanced with a sense of sportsmanship. Angel Rivera (53), who oversees the games, emphasizes the importance of keeping the spirit light and injury-free.

Players keep returning, week after week for good times under the Ave Maria sunshine. “There’s a lot of us who come every week and then there’s people who come and go,” said Rivera. But count on seeing Rivera again at South Park on Sunday mornings.

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