Liam Shea is a big hit

Liam Shea Soft­ball NL’s Mi­nor Male Ath­lete of the Year

The Compass - - Front page - BY CHRIS LEWIS edi­tor@cb­n­com­pass.ca

Young Liam Shea’s prow­ess at the plate has at­tracted at­ten­tion for a num­ber of years. Pla­cen­tia is al­ready well known for pro­duc­ing topflight tal­ent in soft­ball, and ear­lier this month Soft­ball NL rec­og­nized Shea as the Mi­nor Male Ath­lete of the Year for 2016. The Laval High School stu­dent was more than happy to re­ceive the hon­our.

Hav­ing grown up play­ing soft­ball, Liam Shea has been rec­og­nized for the ef­forts he’s put into the game.

Shea earned him­self an award at the re­cent Soft­ball NL an­nual gen­eral meet­ing on May 7 — Mi­nor Male Ath­lete of the Year 2016.

Shea told The Com­pass it was an hon­our to re­ceive the award, and that things are only look­ing up from here.

“Soft­ball has al­ways been a huge part of my life,” ex­plained Shea. “I’ve played lo­cally since I was fives-years-old, so I can’t re­ally re­mem­ber a time when I wasn’t in­volved in it.”

Shea, 17, is a Grade 11 stu­dent at Laval High School in Pla­cen­tia, where he also plays basketball and hockey, but says that soft­ball is a per­sonal favourite of his.

Soft­ball has taken Shea all over the coun­try, hav­ing played in na­tional tour­na­ments in both On­tario and Saskatchewan. Shea has also par­tic­i­pated in pro­vin­cial tour­na­ments, but says that some of his best mem­o­ries come from na­tion­als.

“You re­ally get to test your skills in na­tion­als,” he ex­plained. “Those are the best play­ers in Canada, so you re­ally need to play as best you can. That’s some­thing you don’t al­ways

get to do in the pro­vin­cial level, so it’s fun and chal­leng­ing at the same time.”

While trav­el­ling for soft­ball, Shea says he has de­vel­oped friend­ships he would have never made any other way. On top of that, the whole ex­pe­ri­ence as a soft­ball player in Canada is some­thing Shea will never take

lightly.

Two years ago, Shea started play­ing at a pro­vin­cial level, and as of last year, has moved up to in­ter­me­di­ate. Shea says soft­ball is not only a big part of his life, but a pop­u­lar sport at his high school as well.

Upon be­ing nom­i­nated for the Mi­nor Male Ath­lete of the Year award, Shea says he felt as though all the years of play­ing were lead­ing up to mo­ments like this.

“It’s re­ally a great feel­ing to be rec­og­nized like that,” ex­plained Shea. “Like I said, soft­ball played a huge role in my life, so get­ting any kind of award like that makes up for any bad game or bad day you have. It’s an hon­our, re­ally.”

As a high school ath­lete, Shea has many op­por­tu­ni­ties to take part in dif­fer­ent sports in the coming years, but he says his love of this sport will be with him for a life­time.

Liam Shea, 17, has been an avid soft­ball player for as long as he’s been able to play sports.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Re­ceiv­ing Soft­ball NL’s Mi­nor Male Ath­lete of the Year award was an hon­our for Liam Shea.

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