I had the pleasure of managing the state champion Auburn 12U softball all-star team in competing in the Babe Ruth World Series that was held in Treasure Cove, Florida. That adventure was possible only through the generosity of local businesses and individuals and their financial support.

I offer my thanks to all for making that journey possible.

I want to take this opportunity to also thank the young women who made our state incredibly proud with their success at the tournament. The team includes: Leah Thibodeau, Paige Coleman, Kaelyn Langlois, Emily Giguere, Tiana Avila, Kassiidy Lobb, Lexi Kelsea, Emily Horton, Izzy Jalbert, Violet Vincent and my favorite player — Abbie Simpson. This team competed well and finished in a very respectable 15th place — in the world.

The team also was awarded the Sportsmanship Award for their age group — an incredible honor.

Those young women are wonderful softball players but — and I am sure the coaches (Jess Morin, Jaime Lobb and Kim Jalbert) would agree — even better young people

No matter their next venture in life, be it on the diamond or off, a better group of young women you will not find.

Thank you, ladies, for making Auburn and the state of Maine very proud.

Dave Simpson, Auburn

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