Current situation: All things Ambush!

First things FIRST: A CONGRATULATIONS is in order for Mike Moore’s,  KC Ambush 06 for winning the USSSA Mother’s Day Goliath 12uB, lowerflight championship. They had a REALLY good practice Wednesday and some players are beginning to really step up.  They’re starting to understand, trust and believe in how good they can be AS A TEAM. We’re certainly not finished nor satisfied.  So excited for this group as they were a newly formed 1st year 12uB team in the fall. Can’t imagine where they’ll be this time next year.  Sky’s the limit

Next line of order goes to Timothy Burt’s, KC Ambush 07 team. They took 3rd overall in their first EVER 10uOpen tournament after only ever playing C ball.

This group tasted a little success in their 10uC VIP tournament in fall. Before the rumor mill gets started, the 2 front right are guest players as we were missing 1 for the weekend.  We thought another one was going to be too injured to play but she played through her injury the entire weekend.

Anyhow, last fall this team lost in their last VIP series tournament game in the Championship.  We still didn’t know what we had and hit the winter HARD with these girls. Their first spring VIP tournament, in 3 games they scored 30 runs and only gave up 2. That’s how we KNEW it was time! We didn’t know what to expect this weekend as this was our first open tournament outside of the C realm.  After an initial “nerves” first game, these girls freaking BROUGHT IT! All the way to a well deserved 3rd place finish.

KC Ambush 03-14uA: We entered into an 18uOpen tournament this weekend. I didn’t know what to expect and figured, we’d hold our own. Not a lot to report here as we did in fact hold our own. Lost one (possibly 2) we shouldn’t have and tied one we probably shouldn’t have.

Overall we ended up going 2-3-1 for the weekend. Learned a lot in the process and looking forward to continuing to raise the bar.

KC Ambush 08-10uC: Is currently having growing pains. This is a new team that is also young with loads of potential once they get out of their current mindset. There’s a little immaturity there but it’s coming and their problems (not all bad) are easily correctable.  This challenge is probably the most fun of them all because these girls are really impressionable. It’ll be interesting to see how they’ll respond after this weeks practice.

There you have it folks. State of Ambush.  Overall it was an awesome weekend of softball. Lots learned and lots accomplished. We’re currently in a happy place.

#kcambush

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This is Lily Wait – Be like Lily Wait

Lily Wait is a staple of KC Ambush 06. She hit her 3rd career home run during an eventual dominating win. This was her first home run over the fence in an Ambush uniform. This was also the first home run for KC Ambush 06.  I’m sure there will be many more to come.

Words from mom…

“We call you our own little “Salvy”… the team parents like to refer to you as, “Babe Ruth”. 

Either way, you have big things ahead for you! 1st legit over-the-fence homerun as part of the Ambush family!  We couldn’t be more proud! Keep’em coming and you will make a name for yourself… Big bomb Lily!”

Congratulations Lily!!!

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This is Katelyn Ravasini – Be like Katelyn

Saturday, May 5th – 2018, Katelyn Ravasini hit her first career home run (a 2-run shot) after many close calls to help pull KC Ambush 03 ahead for the eventual win during a 0-0 tie.

It was an awesome shot to witness and I couldn’t be more proud of her accomplishment in what hopes to be many more to come.

Not only was it HER first round-tripper, it was KC Ambush 03’s first over the fence round-tripper.  Us coaches had a personal side bet on who’d be the first out of a few that have come consistently close and my money was on her the entire time.

Enough from me: Here’s a message from mom:

“Katelyn, we are so happy and proud of you for hitting your first out of the park home run last weekend!  What a fun journey it has been from coach pitch in kindergarten to high level competition in 8th grade.  You have worked hard, you have overcome (numerous!) injuries, and you have grown into a great leader and competitor on the field. 

You have been blessed with amazing coaches and teammates that are like family to us.  We are looking forward to seeing your team compete this summer and cannot wait to see who gets the next long ball. 

Go KC Ambush!!   Love, Mom and Dad”

Congratulations Katelyn!!!

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KC Urban Youth Academy (UYA)

I had the pleasure of working with our Police Athletic League  (PAL) Panther players again and it was just as rewarding as the first time.  Something about a yellow ball and some open dirt (turf) that allows me to just be in my element – coach mode.

This time, it was to help out with more fundamentals with concentrating on hitting. The first time we practiced, we worked on a 2 strike approach drill and the girls struggled with the basic swing with many often struggling to just make making contact.  This time, we broke down the basics of the swing for them. From stance, load, toe touch and backside closing to the ball they seemed to grasp it really well.

Totally didn’t expect it; but got my 15 seconds of fame (actually the last 4 seconds) in the process. Check out the news story here

These girls did awesome. I constantly was reminded of how, “it feels weird” which was music to my ears.  When  I hear that, it means they’re implementing my teachings instead of doing it their same old “comfortable” way.

The girls picked up the drills really quick and when it came time for live BP it was a COMPLETE 360 from the other day. They were hitting the ball with authority the “weird way”.

The ultimate reward though, “Thanks for coming! I learned so much today!”

ANYTIME! #KCAmbush #PALPanthersSoftball

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KC Ambush – PAL Panthers…

Long time no see… Boy! Do I have a DOOZY!

Yesterday Ambush 03 & 06 had the pleasure of finally meeting up  & practicing with Police Athletic League (PAL) Panther players. The meeting was in the works for a couple of weeks and FINALLY, yesterday was GO time!

The PAL is an KC police initiative to bridge relationships between civilians and police officers. I encourage you to view more information by clicking here.

We arranged for KC Ambush to meet PAL the Panthers at their new state of the art indoor practice facility for a joint practice with our 12’s & 14’s teams. More information about the KC Urban Youth Academy can be found by clicking here.

At first, it was the normal/ awkward meet the PAL coach and players  as we only had a practice plan  after a couple of weeks of back and forth emailing. As time went on it grew into something MUCH bigger than I had envisioned.

We were doing our normal drills and it took a little nudging on my behalf for our girls to start helping as much as they could. Before I knew it, they “took it and ran with it!”  They were encouraging, high-fiving, and volunteering help any way possible throughout practice.

After the combined practice, the look on the Panther players was priceless! There’s a REAL JOY in seeing people that are able to push themselves into believing they can do what they previously thought they couldn’t.

There was a couple of drills where you could tell they thought they would be overwhelmed but they freakin BROUGHT IT & made it look good while doing it for their first time. Before long, they were asking me to go again and again and… It was AWESOME!

I was able to push Ambush players and PAL players with the workout which was an added bonus.

The icing on the cake was the Panther players themselves actually asked us to join them for ALL of their practices.

It was VERY flattering but they have NO idea how much fun we (mostly I) actually had working with them.  I know in theory it’s supposed to be one sided and they’re supposed to thank and appreciate me for coming and working with them BUT I even more so appreciated them for allowing me TO WORK WITH them.

Selfish confession: I’ve been looking for years on ways I can give back through my passion (coaching softball) to anyone that would listen. This opportunity is PERFECT! It’s exactly what I’ve been looking for. The welcoming smiles on the Panther players faces was freaking AWESOME! I slept lightly all night thinking about how we could do more.

Coach Courtney, I know yo may not read this blog but THANKS AGAIN for the opportunity. You have no idea how much this meant to me as I started playing organized baseball right across the street from the current PAL building off of 18th & White.

#KCAmbush #PALPanthersSoftball

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It’s bigger than softball…

2018BudgetTemplate

Long time no hear…  Happy Holidays from KC Ambush to you guys.  Up above is a link to  download a budget spreadsheet I hand out every year to year to anyone that wants to get their personal finances in order for the upcoming calendar year.

Please feel free to use and share at your disposal. To sort the worksheet you’re in, press CNTRL-Q

Basically input your salary into every week for the month, input your expenses and everything is calculated for you real time. The first page is an overview of the entire year.  If you want to enter something that’s not in the drop down, you must change one of the categories in the first page to an expense you want renamed. Otherwise you can use “misc” for an entry.

If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Roger – kcambush@yahoo.com – 816.914.8280

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KC Ambush 06: Berth of 06!

KC Ambush 06 played in their second tournament after a more than forgettable first tournament filled with the expected ups and downs of a new team playing together for the first time.

We went into that 1st tournament with the usual, “let’s see what we have and fix it so we can be better going forward” mindset.  We saw, we fixed, they responded!  From the beginning in our 2nd tournament,  out the gate we played a couple of ’05 teams.  We looked really impressive in both games and quite frankly, we looked like we should’ve been playing in an A tournament instead.  When I say, “they looked good.” THEY LOOKED GOOD!

Saturday’s scheduled game ended up getting rained out as we had only one pool game in the ONE FIELD that was rained out for the complex.  Anyhow, that brings us to bracket play on Sunday.  The girls started so-so while holding the opposing team to 1 run over the first 3 innings.  We finally pulled ahead in the 3rd inning before closing out the game with a victory (I forgot the score).

The next game, we weren’t exactly over-matched, but it was one of those games where we could have won!  It was a learning experience and reminder of what else we need to work on.  Even though we lost, we came home with some hardware from the top bracket of the B tournament.  We’re far from satisfied with the 3rd place finish but we’ll take it.  They believe they can do better and the good part is, we know what we have to do to be better.

For now, we’ll settle for the bronze bragging rights.  We’ll also accept our BERTH to the USSSA 2018 National Championships we just received.  Winning is contagious.  Hopefully we can keep it up as an organization.

#kcambush

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KC Ambush 08: Nationally Ranked

Really! Not really…  KC Ambush had their first tournament of the fall 2017 season.  In the midst of fall league ball, I’ve been kind of worried about the product on the field known as KC Ambush 08.

To be honest, after the first game of fall ball the parents felt that the product on the field left a lot to be desired.

 

I had to send an email stating that even though they were worried about the girls performance for the night that they needed to keep their eyes on the prize.

We’re a new team that needs time to gel.  The league is for fine tuning and I really view it as just an elevated practice.  It’s basically used for putting the puzzle pieces together for the tournament season and to know what we need to work on.

That was approximately 2 weeks ago when we really DID look like The Bad News Bears out on the field.

Before league play, I warned the parents that we may win or lose by a lot but to not be alarmed.  Immediately after the first night, I had to email the entire team to  remind them that things will get better very quickly.  I believed it but wasn’t sure if they did or not.

We hit the last couple of weeks  really hard correcting the mistakes of what seemed like a disaster first night of league ball.

FAST FORWARD to this weekend. In my eyes, we’re an average C (rank goes A, B and C with A being the highest) with potential to play B once everyone gets on the same page and improves to where I think they should be able to. That usually takes about a year as we do A LOT of fundamentals a specific certain type of way.  Not to toot my own horn but all Ambush players minutely technically sound in all areas of their game.

Friday night we went 0-2 against some really good teams.  By the techniques they were displaying and athleticism of their girls, there’s no reason they shouldn’t have been playing  strictly B tournaments.  However, we played them both relatively close. It shocked me as I was expecting us to go through our growing pains against more advanced and talented teams.

That brings us to Friday night.  Next week is SO IN THE PAST! Saturday’s pool game the light bulb clicked.  Saturday, we won against a team that should’ve beat us and that put us in a different bracket from the bottom bracket.

Sunday I had to catch a flight so I had no access to the game or its updates.  I was then sent a link to the game updates and saw that we lost.  I figured we’d lost and was done for the day.  I then get a text claiming that Ambush is going to the Championship game.  At first, I thought it was a joke and stated I though we’d lost. They instructed me to check again.

I’ll be damned!  That was the moment I realized the game link was from the night before and we were indeed in the Championship game beating some really good teams on the way.  One actually had plans on playing in a B tournament for the weekend instead.

Now I’m watching our i-score gamecast religiously looking at us as we eventually win the Championship with a 3-1 score.  I heard reports that the girls played like a real team this weekend.

You have no idea how excited I am of this group to go from worst to first in the matter of 2 weeks.  My only thought is that this gives the girls a chance to KNOW how good they can be and will take practice even MORE seriously.  Really excited to see how they respond.

Oh yeah! Got a text today that we’re now ranked # 29 in the country and #3 in the state of Missouri in C ball.  The numbers are impressive but it’s really a numbers game as we’re no where near the #29th team in the country or #3 in the states at the C level.  But it’s more fuel to give these girls to work their tails off.  I’ll take it anyway I can get it as I’m walking around with my chest poked out even though I wasn’t there.

#kcambush #winning

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KC Ambush 07: VIP Series Fall Kickoff – Bronze!

 

This is KC Ambush ’07.  A feisty bunch that just took 3rd place (in the top flight) in the VIP Series Fall Kickoff tournament.  I knew they’d be pretty decent sooner or later but this is their 1st tournament of the season.

Soon after tryouts, we assembled the team and hit the techniques and fundamentals hard the Ambush way.  All weekend I was constantly reminded of how they’ve been paying attention to the little things we teach. From throwing motions, catching with 2 hands down to the very basics of our triangles we go over every practice… I was thoroughly impressed.

I really didn’t expect them to be so decent so quick.  I figured, we’d use this tournament as a tournament to see how we are as a team; to see our potential and get exposed so that we’ll know what we need to work on going forward.  That never happened.  I by no, means expected a 3rd place overall finish.  The girls are starting to take to our fundamental teachings and applying them in game situations.

For instance, while we had some down-time between games, we worked on slap footwork and hand positioning.  Low and behold, we came out the gate swinging as the girls were professional slap hitters logging base hits.  Now granted, we didn’t face the best pitching but the techniques they followed is what I’m looking for most in situations like this.

After the dust settled, the girls ended up losing 2-1 in a pitchers duel to Legacy 07 in the semi-final.  Legacy 07 came away victorious with a timely walk-off hit to score the winning runner on 3rd base.

We’re VERY proud of these girls as they really get what we’re trying to accomplish as a team.  They’re really buying in and it’s a beautiful thing to be a part of.  Can’t wait to witness what’s in store for these girls in the near future.  It’s all good in Ambush land!

#kcambush #winning

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Ambush 1st annual BBQ and cookout

Yes!  All of Ambush had our 1st annual Meet and Greet/Cookout. I had the time of my life with the different activities we all facilitated and participated in.  I wanted something really informal so everyone could just meet and greet everyone at their own pace as well as a chance for the girls (from all teams) to do activities outside of normal softball practice settings.

We also wanted this to kickoff before we start the strenuous upcoming softball  schedule.  I initially started on the grill, before other parents (ready to chime) in kicked me off for me to go parlay in the activities.  Did I mention that Ambush parents are AWESOME?  I wouldn’t write it if I didn’t mean it.  More on that later.

I exited, stage left from the grills and went to join the ongoing football game being played in the outfield by some Ambush 03 while the rest of Ambush 03, 06, 07 & 08 were in the infield playing kickball.  I couldn’t do it as it was like 20 on 20.  So it was Craig (coach of ’03) and 8 girls so I evened the teams out and we played 5v5 (coaches as QB’s and the girls were receivers).  It didn’t hurt that I had an ex football player on my team though as we won by a touchdown or so.  I truly don’t remember the score.

After that, I decided to try and make some sense of the 20 on 20 kickball game that was taking place.  We tried picking teams and organizing it as best as we could before eventually concluding that we were going to hold an adult only game before allowing the little ones to play.  The score wasn’t important as we only played 1 inning as the kids were on the sidelines buzzing to get on the field.  And when the game was over, BUZZED THEY DID!

We had a mixed bag of 30+ kids to choose from as they eagerly lobbied to be chosen from team to team.  In the end, another game we don’t know who won as it was mostly just for fun and competition after about 4-5 innings.  The kids had a blast. The parents had a blast…

Oh yeah… back to the parents.  I know a lot of organizations have good parent/coach relationships and some have bad parent/coach relationships.  Ambush parents/coach relationships literally go beyond good.  Not just to the coaches but to each other from top to bottom, it’s like one big community of everyone is so willing to be helpful, understanding and being on the same page.  It allows the coaching of these girls so much easier.  We truly have an organization of parents who seek out ways to promote and assist instead of wondering what we can give them.

My hat’s off to you guys! THANKS!

#kcambush

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