|Story & photos by Tom Michele, Eagle Systems &
Eight singles in the sixth inning led to seven runs scored by the Fort
McCoy softball team in a 14-10 victory May 22 against the Angelini’s
Pizzeria and Ristorante team of Sparta.
A batter from the Fort McCoy team
connects with the ball.
Fort McCoy pitcher and team
manager Garrison Commander Col. David E. Chesser unfurls a
The umpire keeps a close watch on
the activities as a Fort McCoy batter prepares to take a swing.
Lt. Col. Rob Humphrey (left) and
Tony Angelini (right) present the trophy to Col. David E.
Chesser and the Fort McCoy team at the conclusion of the game.
It was the third time the teams battled in a Chicago-style softball
game, the latest game played at McCoy’s Constitution Park. Army won the
first two contests. A fourth match-up at Sparta’s Memorial Field is
being planned for September.
The Chicago-style game uses a 16-inch softball, softer than a normal
softball. Fielders do not wear gloves of any kind.
“They need help with their umpires,” Tony Angelini said jokingly after
the game. He quickly shifted his comments to articulate why the games
are important, “to build a better relationship between Sparta and Fort
McCoy. The most important thing is to have fun playing the game.” Along
with being the team manager, Angelini also is the owner and operator of
Col. David E. Chesser, garrison commander and manager of the McCoy team,
echoed Angelini’s thoughts, saying, “These games foster improved
relationships between the post and Sparta. The Army recognizes that the
quality of life and readiness of our Soldiers and their Families is
greatly impacted by the support they receive from the local townships.
Thus, it’s in our best interest to sustain positive relationships with
the surrounding communities. We’re always looking for ways to improve
That was evident in that, after most people had left the ball park,
Chesser used his jumper cables and truck to jump start Angelini’s family
van that had a dead battery.
Angelini donated the traveling trophy for the event, in the name of
Mario Angelini, the coach’s six-year-old son who is battling autism.
Angelini’s scored the first run in the game and led 3-2 halfway through
the third inning.
McCoy took the lead in the bottom of the third inning for good on a walk
to Manny Salema followed by Darrin Stallworth “poking” the ball to the
outfield fence and sprinting around the bases for an inside-the-park
home run. McCoy led 4-3 at this point, and never looked back.
Fort McCoy’s roster included Sgt. Ira Leslie, Sgt. Nick Respecio, Sgt.
Manny Salema, Command Sgt. Maj. Joel Rothbauer, Sgt. Jaques Joseph,
Master Sgt. Darrin Stallworth, Master Sgt. Doug Hyde, Master Sgt. Scott
Penkova, Col. David E. Chesser, Spc. Nathan Kalstad and Sgt. 1st Class
Angelini’s roster included Dave Harman, Jeff Ames, George DeAlba, Nick
Irsuto, Steve Gorsche, Trevor Jones, Dale Steffen, Ryan Roberts, Matt
Johnson and Tony Angelini.