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JCMS students meet softball icon

Buck, Thomas meet Finch

by: Submitted photo - Kira Thomas (left) and Leah Buck (right) of Madras recently met Jennie Finch (middle) at the Jennie Finch softball camp in Medford.

Madras' Leah Buck and Kira Thomas had an opportunity of their young lifetimes.
   The two Jefferson County Little League All-Stars participated in a softball camp hosted by softball icon Jennie Finch several weeks ago.
   "When we first saw her, I could hardly talk," Thomas said of Finch. "It was like meeting a celebrity."
   Not only did Buck and Thomas get to converse with Finch during the camp, but the two Jefferson County Middle School students were able to eat dinner with Finch.
   "It was so awesome," Buck said of meeting Finch. "She was so nice and helpful."
   Finch is well known for her pitching abilities for the United States Olympic team. She helped guide USA to a gold medal in the 2004 games and a silver medal in the 2008 games. Finch, who was a three-time All-American pitcher for the University of Arizona, shared her wealth of softball knowledge with just over 200 softball campers.
   "Jennie taught us how to pitch the right way," Thomas said. "I learned so much at the camp it was ridiculous."
   Buck and Thomas said Finch stressed to practice like champions and take control of your attitude and effort.
   "We learned a lot and I think it will help us be better players," Buck said. "It was really exciting."
   Buck and Thomas were both named Jefferson County All-Stars this summer.
   "I will never forget meeting her," Thomas said.