Coach Trent Leinenweber incorporated a few surefire methods to inspire his team to win the U10 Division One City Championship of the Calgary Minor Softball Association.
Cheering on teammates, having a blast at the ballpark and receiving some incredible training from U16 pitcher Abby Maillot all contributed to a great season for the young ballplayers.
Over the weekend, the Snakes went from losing the first game of the final against a West Valley team on Saturday to dangling gold on Sunday.
The club came into the first game of the finals far too tense, says Leinenweber, until he explained to them he was colour blind and couldn't tell the difference between silver and gold.
"Then they finally got their excitement level up again and got cheering. After that, they took over again. We ended up finishing off that game and won the next one."
Leinenweber wasn't only colour-blind, he didn't know how to count.
"None of them knew whether we won or lost until after we shook hands.after each game. That's a rule I put in place with our scorekeepers."
"A few of the times, I didn't even know if we won or lost."
"The number one thing I judged the team on was whether they cheered loud enough for their teammates and that's how we won. As soon as we started cheered well, honestly, the skills came."
Definitely, he's proud of the team, but he's especially appreciative of the coaching provided by U16 pitcher Abby Maillot.
"Abby was absolutely essential for our team. She was there just about every game teaching the kids how to pitch " says Leinenweber. "Watching all the teams play, we probably had the strongest pitching."
The Snakes earned a berth into the provincials but have opted out.
"We could go to provincials, but most of the kids are out at the lake. We decided to skip them and just say we had a great time."
The team had a 10-1-1 record in their 12-game regular season before being seeded into the 'A' division for playoffs that included the top six teams. In the end, they only had to play three playoff games in a double knockout format.