Three Army 'ohana' prepare for the All-Army Softball Team tryouts
August 12, 2014
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Four U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers stationed at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, were recently selected to try out for the All-Army Men's Softball Team at Fort Sill, Okla.
The Soldiers report with the rest of the 25 Army selectees from around the world Aug. 14, for a chance to be on the 15-man final roster.
"To be chosen to even try out for this team is a huge honor," said Sgt. Mark Proctor, shortstop and third baseman and satellite communications specialist for the 53rd Signal Battalion, 1st Space Brigade (Satellite Control), Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Strategic Command. "The guys that I have played with before; those have been chosen to be where I am now; are top notch players."
Proctor and two other players, Capt. Chad Agusin, and Staff Sgt. Bobby Wilkins, are rookies to the trial process, but for Spc. Marshall Woods, first baseman and training NCO for the 125th Financial Management Company, 45th Sustainment Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, this is just another "at-bat."
"I've been playing since a ball could fit into my hand," said the already three-time All-Army Men's Softball Team member and native of Appomattox, Va. "From 3 years old through college at Kent State University, I've been playing ball."
Each player, regardless of prior experience, submits a packet through the Morale, Recreation and Welfare offices and is chosen based on merit.
"It's a lot about who knows about your talent and putting yourself out there," said Proctor.
Proctor, already known because he played Class A baseball in the MLB Minor League for the N.Y. Mets, was chosen to try out based on his previous experience and resume. Others needed a little extra help.
"I was fortunate to be scouted in a couple of games," said Capt. Chad Agustin, second baseman, Aiea, Hawaii native, and chief of the Warrior Transition Office for the Pacific Regional Medical Command. "Softball is my passion. It's one of the tools I can use to uplift others and also share experiences and build resiliency."
Agustin, a Hawaii Army reservist, was activated to try out for the team from his civilian job as a Honolulu police officer.
All four players are hoping to help the team win a third consecutive gold medal during the Armed Forces Tournament, Sept. 9.
"This year we are going for a three-peat," said Woods. "It's never been done before in history of the Armed Forces Men's Softball Tournament. We are ready to get on the field and make some history."