The timing was perfect. For quite a while the Hamilton-Wenham Little League had been talking about getting a youth softball program started, but it was a big project and they needed somebody to get it off the ground. When Bill Cooke moved into town and began inquiring about a softball program for his two daughters they found the right person to serve as director.
Cooke had coached softball for the past six years and was willing to take on the task. The family had been surprised to learn there was no program in their new town of Wenham. The Little League Board of Directors voted to establish a girls’ softball program beginning this spring and hopes to have three divisions.
The Farm League will be for 3rd and 4th graders, Junior for 5th and 6th, and Senior for 7th, 8th, and 9th. They will play in the Essex County League.
“For the past few years the number of girls playing baseball has been increasing for girls, and while we don’t discourage that we wanted to reach out to the girls who prefer softball,” said H-W Little League president Len Dolan. “We had been talking about starting a program for years, but honestly the Little League takes so much of our time it was difficult to get it going. When Bill moved to town and asked about our softball program we found the right guy to focus his attention to the job.
“We’re taking it slow because we want to do it the right way. We looked back at the history of Hamilton-Wenham softball, and met with the new athletic director Craig Genualdo, who was very receptive to the idea. He looks at not having softball at the high school as a void. It was tough for the program with no feeder system so now our program will develop players.”