By JAMES ALLAN
BOCA CHICA, Dominican Republic — The kids stole the show Sunday morning at Ozorio Field.
The University of Iowa baseball team hosted a kid’s clinic to 120-plus youth in Boca Chica. The kids were broken into eight groups based on age level and the Hawkeyes interacted with and coached the children for a 90-minute clinic.
“It was amazing,” said sophomore Mitchell Boe. “To come out here and make these kids day… this is so worthwhile.”
“It was cool getting to know some of the youngsters and the amount of energy they bring to the game,” said junior Austin Guzzo. “It was cool to host this event; everyone is having a great time. The kids are all smiling and were having a good time, which was neat to see.”
The kid’s clinic marked the beginning of a weeklong trip for the Hawkeyes. Iowa traveled to the Dominican all day Saturday and were up to put on the camp Sunday morning before posting a 9-4 victory over the Dominican Army National Team.
“It was a great first day,” said UI head coach Rick Heller. “We came out this morning and it was a completely different world for us then we are out giving a clinic to 100-plus kids. It was a lot of fun.
“Being a life-long baseball guy and to have a chance to come down here with so many great players from the Dominican is meaningful. To have our team be a part of this, it was special to me personally and I know it was to our guys.”
Iowa returns to action Monday at 9 a.m. (CT), facing the Texas Rangers Baseball Academy team at the Rangers Complex.