Thursday, July 30, 2015

Little Leaguers Keener and Steele playing together again in the Pros

Nick Keener (Second from Top Left) and Jonathan Steele (Top Right without Hat)
Days in the Newberry Little League
Editorial by John Green
Newberry Little League has always been one of the prominent programs in the Williamsport Area. Known for their team making it to the Little League World Series in 1969, they were the first local team in the series since Williamsport defeated Lock Haven 16-7 in 1947. Many fine baseball players have graduated from the Newberry turf along Arch Street in the west end of Williamsport.

Nick Keener (Bottom Left) and Jonathan Steele (Second Row - no hat)
Enter two young men who have had a passion for baseball all their life. Playing together since age nine, Nick Keener and Jonathan Steele are almost like brothers. Nick, the son of Stephen D. Keener, Little League International President and CEO, has pitched many games to his friend and catcher, Jonathan Steele. Although I cannot find any information on their success at Newberry, I am sure they made it to the Newberry Little League All Stars when they were 11 and 12 years old. They just seem to be those types of players who up the game of all those around them.

Later, Nick and Jonathan played together for the Williamsport Area High School baseball team and were members of the team that went to the Babe Ruth World Series in 2007. Both played well in Benton, Arkansas.

Fast forward to July 25th in Watertown, New York. Nick Keener was already on the Watertown Bucks baseball team as a pitchr. The Bucks are in the North Country Baseball League which has four ball clubs. Jonathan tried out for the club a few weeks, but the team was not in need of a catcher. But fate has some strange twists and turns. Weeks later, both of the Bucks catchers injured their hands and the ball club called Jonathan last Thursday. Here we go again, Nick pitching and Jonathan catching in what must seem like DeJa Vu!

# 3 Pitcher Nick Keener (L) and #20 Catcher Jonathan Steele (R)
Nick Keener played for Mansfield - He was a transfer from Division I Coastal Carolina University

His credentials include: Sportsmanship Award recipient at Williamsport High School ... earned the Mike Mussina Athletic Scholarship ... played in three Babe Ruth World Series ... named Babe Ruth World Series MVP in 15 year old division ... winning pitcher in the District Championship game ... three-time Sun Gazette Pitcher of the Week.

Jonathan Steele has a double in the game on July 25th in Watertown, NY. has also played in the Babe Ruth World Series.

We wish these young men all the best in their baseball career and beyond.

Lineup showing Jonathan Steele and Nick Keener
Box Score
Signing Autographs

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