The Pahrump Youth Softball Association says it is stronger than ever as another year of youth softball drew to a close on April 30.
The association had one 8-U team, two 10-U teams, two 12-U teams and two 14-U teams.
Despite the league only having two teams each in each division, (with exception of 8-U) league president Dominic Sandoval remains positive. He said the PYSA continues to be competitive with Las Vegas teams.
“The decrease in numbers has not killed us,” he said. “We will just continue with what we have and we will continue to build the lower divisions. I am not sure what the answer is.”
Sandoval said the association is doing everything it can to bring numbers up in the lower division.
He hopes to up the amount of players in the younger divisions.
“That’s our goal, to get more teams in the younger division,” he said. “If we increase the number of the younger teams, they will be able to stay at home to play and the older kids will still travel.”
He thinks that the main reason the numbers have declined in the area is because parents don’t want to travel to Las Vegas for the games.
“We even have dropped the price of registration so that more people would sign up,” he said.
Numbers aside, the main reason the softball association is improving, said PYSA vice president Rich Lauver, is the level of competition.
“During the regular season, our teams have had a winning record against Las Vegas teams,” Lauver said. “We have two teams at each level and so we are forced to play Las Vegas teams. We have been doing this for five years. We now have winning records out of necessity.”
This year, Lauver is coaching the U-14 team and is proud of their accomplishments.
“This year we were a B-level team,” he said. “But we should be an A-level team by fall of this year.”
Lauver said there are three levels, A, B and C, with C being the lowest level of competition.
According to Lauver, the A level is where all the college coaches flock to in showcase tournaments.
“There are some A-level players that never even play high school ball,” he said. “The reason is the college coaches are not at the high school games.”