The Minnesota Twins and Twins Community Fund in partnership with Youth 1st, Federated Insurance, Jostens, Pearson, Cashwise, Bennerotte & Associates, Jaguar Communications, The Retrofit Companies, US Bank, Owatonna Motor Company, Profinium and Minnesota-USA Softball have selected the Prescott 14U softball team as the recipient of a Youth 1st Team Award for their outstanding sportsmanship during the 2019 Frenzy Tournament, hosted by the Farmington Girls Fastpitch Association.
The Youth 1st Team Award recognizes positive behavior from players, coaches and everyone associated with the team, including parents, fans and spectators.
"We are placing the emphasis on how you play the game, which is ultimately more important than if you win or lose," said Mark Arjes, founder/director of Youth 1st. "It has become increasingly difficult to find and retain coaches and officials for youth sports because of the abuse that they take during games. We believe it is time to model and encourage values-based actions, creating what we call a Conduct 1st environment where the focus is on the kids, competitive energies are kept in check and officials and opponents are respected."
"The Minnesota Twins and Twins Community Fund are proud to partner on the Youth 1st Team Awards. Baseball and softball play a key role in the development of young people when the focus is on teaching life skills, developing values, and building character," said Dave St. Peter, President and CEO of the Minnesota Twins. "We are thrilled that the Youth 1st Team Awards program recognizes players, coaches and parents who model and encourage good sportsmanship and positive conduct in Twins Territory."
The Youth 1st Team Award was created by working with umpires and tournament directors. The umpires provide a team selection vote after each game during the tournament based on the conduct and sportsmanship exhibited by coaches, players and fans. Teams with an exemplary score from the officials are recognized as Youth 1st Teams. Teams are presented with a plaque and certificates PLUS tickets for all players and coaches to attend and be recognized at a Minnesota Twins home game at Target Field. The mission of Youth 1st is to connect conduct, character and community to youth activity programs.