BY MICHAEL KELLY
HALFMOON — One shy of three dozen teams took place in the town’s July 21-24 youth travel baseball tournament, the crown jewel of the summer season for the Halfmoon Baseball League organization.
“This is our feature tournament,” league president Mike Conroy said.
The “Halfmoon Melee” has been that way for several years now. Each summer, Conroy said, the tournament seems to grow a little bit more.
“It’s funny, we barely had to advertise for it this year,” said Conroy, who added only a few older squads needed to be recruited to round out this year’s fields. “Everybody else, they came to us first. The credit for that goes to Dave Voce, who has been doing the tournament for all these years and does such a great job with it. He has every detail of it down to a science.”
Of the 35 teams that competed, eight were from Halfmoon. The organization had one team compete at the 14U level, a pair played in 12U brackets, two played at 10U and three squads took part in 8U action.
“We generally try to keep the tournament [brackets] to having three, four pool games for each age group,” Conroy said. “In certain age groups, we broke play into two pools so we [wouldn’t] have too many teams needing to all play each other.”
Teams from all around New York competed in the tournament, plus squads from Vermont. Other local teams playing in the tournament included Amsterdam, Clifton Park and Guilderland.
Most of the tournament’s games were played this year at the Halfmoon Town Park. Some games were also played at the sports complex off Woodin Road, while several games were played in North Colonie to account for the expansion of the tournament.
Conroy said the town of Halfmoon deserves a lot of credit for the tournament’s growth and success.
“We get so much support,” Conroy said.
The plan, Conroy said, is to keep the “Melee” moving forward.
“We’re trying not to expand it too much — too far — to keep it manageable, but we [don’t] want to say ‘No’ to teams, either,” Conroy said.
Tryouts for Halfmoon’s fall travel teams are scheduled for early August. For information and to register, head to www.halfmoonbaseball.com.