I think every mom, dad, brother and sister that went along for the ride as Midway won the Little League Softball World Series in 1992 deserves the chance to tell their most vivid memory of that summer.
That’s why Facebook exists. Since I’ve spent the intervening 25 years chasing the dream of being a sportswriter, I get to write mine in the newspaper.
But because I think writing something for the newspaper requires a higher bar for interesting material than does social media, I’m going to admit something I’ve never told anyone in the two and a half decades that have passed since my little sister, Chaney Conine, and her friends won a world championship.
In those tense moments of the Midway-Naples games, I was praying and making deals with God. I told Him, if Midway won, I would stop listening to my Metallica cassette single that featured “Wherever I May Roam” and “Fade To Black.” Did I mention I was 15? Well, anyway, Midway won, but I did not stop listening to Metallica. I’m listening to “Wherever I May Roam” as I write this sentence. It’s OK. The situation has been redeemed.
But that sort of shows how much I cared. I’ve invested a huge part of my life in following sports and covering sports and I’ve never had more fun than I did that summer and the next one when my sister was 12 and Midway went undefeated and won another World Series championship.
By the way, Midway actually went on to win 11 of the next 13 Little League Softball World Series titles. A dynasty was truly born in 1992 and it was a blast to watch.
It was fun to research and write the story of that Midway team. I was especially satisfied to read the descriptions of Robyn Klatt’s catch in right field. I was watching from the press box as I had volunteered to spot for the radio crew. When she laid out and caught that ball, I leapt and hollered and made the radio guys wonder what kind of maniac they were allowing to watch over their shoulders. Actually, though, they understood. It wasn’t the type of play you would expect a 12-year-old to make, but it happened.
That incidentally, was my first and last breach of press box decorum.