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Springhiller playing baseball for Chicago Pioneers

Springhill’s Avery Smith took a break from her baseball practice with the Amherst Athletics to discuss her trip to the Baseball For All National Baseball Tournament in Rockford, Illinois. The 14-year-old also plays for Team Nova Scotia, and she’s wearing a t-shirt from the 2018 U-14 Atlantic Championships she attended last year in St. John’s, Nfld.
Springhill’s Avery Smith took a break from her baseball practice with the Amherst Athletics to discuss her trip to the Baseball For All National Baseball Tournament in Rockford, Illinois. The 14-year-old also plays for Team Nova Scotia, and she’s wearing a t-shirt from the 2018 U-14 Atlantic Championships she attended last year in St. John’s, Nfld. - Dave Mathieson

SPRINGHILL, N.S. – Whether it’s playing for Team Nova Scotia, the Springhill Fencebusters, the Peewee AAA Truro Bearcats, the Amherst Athletics, or the Amherst Little League Cubs, Avery Smith has worn many baseball jerseys in her young baseball career.

Now the 14-year-old Springhiller can add ‘Chicago Pioneers’ to that long list of jerseys.

“It’s pretty cool. I’m excited to go,” Smith said, a week before travelling to Chicago.

Smith is playing in the Baseball For All National Girls Baseball Tournament from July 31 to Aug. 4, in Rockford, Illinois, which is about 130 kilometres west of Chicago.

“I was at the Atlantic championships last year in St. John’s, Newfoundland and I think they scouted me from there,” Smith, who will enter Grade 10 at Springhill High School this September, said.

The tournament features 350 girl baseball players ranging in ages 7-to-18 from throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Smith plays shortstop and pitcher and will be joined by two other girls from Atlantic Canada on the U-15 Chicago Pioneers.

“Most of the players on the team are from Chicago, but there are two from Nova Scotia, including myself, and one from Newfoundland.”

It’s a busy summer of baseball for Smith. Besides playing for the Pioneers, she also plays for the Amherst Athletics 15U team.

“The bantam team is a really fun team and I enjoy being on it with all my friends.”

And she also plays baseball with team Nova Scotia, which hosts the 2019 Baseball Canada U-16 Girls Championships from Aug. 22 to 25 in Bedford.

“Last year they came in second at the Nationals,” Smith said.” I wasn’t on the team, but the team we have this year is really good as well.”

She says the provincial coaches have helped bring her skills to a new level.

“They have helped with my pitching a lot, and same with my in-fielding,” Smith said. “And they also help me focus on all the little details in my game.”

Smith leaves for Chicago on July 28 and will return home Aug. 5.

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