CONNEAUT LAKE — Sue Anderson, owner and manager of Conneaut Lake Recreation Area also owns a pet cemetery, and she’s trying to spark new life. But not among the pets.

“I’d be too scared to watch that movie (Pet Cemetery) or read the book,” Anderson said.

What Anderson wants to bring back is a women’s-only slow pitch softball league to the Conneaut Lake Recreation Area, and she wants it to come to fruition this summer.

Women’s slow pitch softball, eight teams strong at one time, was once a mainstay at the Conneaut Lake fields, but the league fizzled out in 2000, forcing women interested in summer softball to join a co-ed or fast pitch league.

Other similar leagues throughout the area have also dissolved within the last five years.

“It basically just died out,” said Terry Morian, who used to coach a slow pitch team at the Conneaut Lake complex. “I think the co-ed leagues took a lot of the girls, that way they could play with their boyfriends and husbands. Co-ed is big right now nationwide.”

But co-ed teams do not afford women the same opportunities as an all-women’s league.

“The only advantage of (an all-women’s league) is you’re having 10 females playing. A lot of times you only have two or three playing at a time (in co-ed leagues).

“In this league, you’re going to have a complete team (of women). Your average players are going to have more time to play rather than just the top superstars.”

That’s what Anderson is trying to do — provide the opportunity.

“Once a girl graduates from high school, unless she goes to college, there’s no (all-women) teams for her to play on,” Anderson said. “And a lot of them, as they get older, don’t want to play fast pitch because they’re scared that they’re going to get hit.”

“I want to see how much interest we can get and see if we can get a league going. We want it to be a fun league, not one that’s just about tremendous competition.”

Anderson’s vision has caught the eye of several women.

“I had one girl tell me she had seven people (interested in joining),” Anderson said. “Four other girls have called me, too.”

One of those that contacted Anderson is Brandi Post, a 2000 Conneaut Valley graduate, who was a member of the Indians’ softball team during high school.

“I just enjoy softball,” said Post, who plays in the co-ed league at Conneaut Lake. “I was looking for a girls league before the co-ed league.

“I know that I at least have one team myself. I can get together one team. I’m just hoping that they can get together (another) team so we can play.”

Anderson said she would like the league to begin June 1 and be played on Thursdays.

The cost of the league would likely be between $200 and $250 per team, though the exact cost would depend on how many teams were competing and how many games were going to be played, Anderson said.

Women interested in joining the league can contact Anderson at the Conneaut Lake Recreation Area by phone at 382-2267. Any female 18 years old and above is eligible to participate, regardless of where they live.



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