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Safety Squeeze: How Siena’s Athletes Stayed Game Ready During the Pandemic

When you identify as part of something bigger than yourself, for instance, a baseball team, everyday life becomes routine.

The scheduled workouts, practices, games, and other meetings accompanied by the camaraderie that is developed throughout is something that is tough to stray away from.

However, an event occurring on a global scale, separating you from this routine, along with knocking off the very balance of everyday society, can be difficult to adapt to. You find yourself part of something that is bigger than yourself, trying to protect yourself and your family in uncertain times.

So, you wait, along with the rest of your teammates and classmates, and the rest of the country, for the next opportunity to arise. 

The Independent Collegiate Baseball League on July 6th.

This league came together to provide opportunities to local athletes whose spring seasons were either cut short or canceled altogether. Made up of only four teams, the ICBL served as a stand-in for the Perfect Game Baseball Collegiate League, which will hopefully return this upcoming spring. They prioritized safety over simulation, noting that they did not intend to make the competition feel like it usually does because that energy and environment cannot be replicated.

However, the new regulations implemented for this league sound like they took some getting used to. In terms of attendance, the rules allowed for two persons per player. Players that were not active were spread out evenly amongst the dugouts and other seating areas to enforce proper social distancing measures.

Most importantly is that plenty of our very own Siena Saints participated in this league in order to sharpen up for the season. The Albany Dutch, who usually play at Connors Park had representation from numerous Siena players on the team. Ben Seiler, Ryan McGee, Nick Melillo, Devan Kruzinski, Connor Bovair, and Arlo Marynczak were all featured on the roster. Siena products were also all around the league as well; Tim Carroll, Evan St. Claire, Carson Dunkel, and Joey Lauer all took part in this opportunity. Siena is composed of athletes from all around but we also have tight roots in local communities whose continued support, not only for baseball but for all athletic events, should not go unrecognized.  

It is imperative for athletes to keep their bodies prepared so that they are always able to prove that they deserve everything they’ve earned so far. Thanks to the ICBL and the PGBCL, this was accomplished not only for our very own Saints, but for baseball players across the Capital Region.

Its success proves that sports are therapeutic, with multiple parties coming together to be a part of something that is bigger than themselves, spreading joy and good-willed competition.

We can only hope and believe that the Siena Saints will be ready for whatever challenge awaits them and they will perform, not only for themselves but for each other.