LAKEWOOD, Colo. — On the softball diamond, experience can be a valuable asset, and there’s no lack of that for the Colorado Peaches.
“Oldest team in the country,” player Fran Simon said, referring to the team in front of her warming up for practice.
Every member of the Peaches is over the age of 50, and several of the players are in their 70s, 80s or 90s.
“We’ve had knee replacements and hip replacements and my back went out a couple months ago,” one of the outfielders said with a laugh.
These ladies have been around the base paths a few times, but that doesn’t mean their game is perfect.
“Oh!” one of the infielders yelled as she overthrew her throwing partner.
What is guaranteed at Peaches practice is positivity. Cheering, clapping and "you go, girl" is pretty common.
“Some friends came out and saw us, they said ‘I can't believe this, it’s fabulous.’ So, it’s really fun,” one of the 70-year-old players said.
Denver7 caught up with the Peaches as they were preparing for the World Senior Games, a big tournament in Utah. They were looking to continue on the success from their last major tournament in 2019.
“We won the silver,” said Maggie, a 90-year-old player.
It's the same color medal as most of their hair and an even bigger accomplishment given what was going on with the team at the time.
“She was having surgery for her cancer,” Maggie said.
Maggie was describing the team’s coach, Gail Klock.
“She was in her hospital bed, and she was coaching us from her hospital bed,” Maggie said.
“She was coaching on FaceTime. I was holding my phone so she could give directions,” Fran Simon added.
The team won second place in that tournament. This time around, Klock will be with the Peaches on their sleeves. She passed away in March.
“I miss her as a friend,” Maggie said. “We actually built this together.”
This coming tournament will be the first for the team without their coach. They decided to honor her by wearing patches on their jersey sleeves with her number 23 on them.
“She was wonderful. Wish she was still around, but we’re in good hands,” one of the players said from the bench.
Simon has taken the reins, helping the team by coaching in Klock’s memory.
“We’re taking it all this year. We’re going for the gold,” she said.
The Peaches did not win gold at the senior tournament, though their big win in pool play came against the team that went on to win the gold.
“Even if we don’t win, we win,” Maggie said. “The big thing is to be a worthy opponent.”
UPDATE: The Peaches didn't win any medals at the World Senior Games, but 90-year-old Maggie did play for the 50s age division team, becoming the oldest player ever to do so.
If you'd like to learn more, support the team or join them, visit the team's website here.