UPDATE: 55 teams booked for Dodgertown baseball tourneys

VERO BEACH — Dave Banard of RussMatt Baseball, the organizer of the Spring Break tournaments coming to Dodgertown, has booked 55 college and high school teams to play here starting in late February. Thus far, RussMatt has booked 23 Division III schools, 11 junior colleges and 21 high schools to participate in the Dodgertown event.In addition, he will be sending teams from a tournament he runs in Winter Haven, to come to Dodgertown to experience playing on one of the most famous spring training sites in the country.What this all means is some cold, hard cash will be coming, filling up coffers at hotels, restaurants and shops in Indian River County. Just how much is yet to be determined. However, Banard said about half the teams will be staying in townhomes at the complex, but the other half have booked rooms at area hotels, including the Best Western, Holiday Inn, Country Inn and Suites, Hampton Inn, and Spring Hill Suites.Banard added that typically a team will book about 70 room nights per week-long visit.”And I don’t track where parents and family are staying,” he said.Barnard said he is putting the final touches on the schedule and that a few more high school teams may book in early April, but the bulk of the activity will be when the college action is in full swing for the month of March.RussMatt also runs tournaments in Winter Haven and at Disney World. And next year, Barnard is considering segmenting the sites so that all Division 1 teams play in one venue, Division 2 teams in another and Division 3 teams at the third site. That way he can more equitably distribute the teams.”I really had no idea what to expect this year (at Dodgertown),” he said. “Once the word gets out, everyone will want to play here. I think a lot of teams just booked where they had been before.”The advantage Vero Beach offers over the two Central Florida sites, is the history attached to Holman Stadium and its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean.”This place has a lot to offer – there is Dodgertown itself with all the baseball amenities and the proximity to the beach. Once people realize what is there they will be signing up to play,” Barnard said.These are the schools that have booked a week-long slot at Dodgertown:Team                                                         DivisionAcademie Baseball                                    Canada ClubAlvernia (PA)]                                           NCAA IIIAquinas Institute HS (NY)                         HSBabson (MA)                                            NCAA IIIBridewater State (MA)                            NCAA IIICalvin (MI)                                              NCAA IIICentral (IA)                                            NCAA IIIChicago, U of (IL)                                   NCAA IIIConnecticut Avery Point                        JUCO IIDaniel Webster (NH)                              NCAA IIID’Evelyn HS (CO)                                   HSEast Carter HS (KY)                               HSEmory & Henry (VA)                              NCAA IIIErie CC (NY)                                         JUCO IIIFergus Falls CC (MN)                            JUCO IIIFleming County HS (KY)                       HSGettysburg (PA)                                  NCAA IIIGrinnell (IA)                                        NCAA IIIGrove City HS (OH)                            HSHeartland CC                                    JUCO IIIndependence HS (OH)                    HSMedina HS (OH)                                HSMiami Univerisity, Hamilton (OH)     JUCO IIIMt. Aloysius (PA)                             NCAA III Muhlenberg (PA)                             NCAA IIINeumann (PA)                                 NCAA IIINew England College (NH)             NCAA IIINew Jersey City                            NCAA IIINiagara CC (NY)                            JUCO IIINorth Laurel HS (KY)                      HSOneonta State (NY)                       NCAA IIIOwensboro Catholic HS (KY)         HSPenn Trafford HS (PA)                  HSRidgewater (MN)                          JUCO IIIRochester (NY)                            NCAA IIIRochester CC (MN)                    JUCO IIIRock Bridge HS (MO)                  HSSchenectady CC (NY)               JUCO IIIShaker Heights HS                    HSSouth Laurel HS                        HSSt. Dominic HS (NY)                  HSSt. John Fisher (NY)                 NCAA IIISt. Joseph By The Sea (NY)     HSSt. Mary’s (MD)                         NCAA IIISussex CC (NJ)                        JUCO IITappan Zee HS (NY)                 HST.C. Williams HS (VA)               HSTeam Ontario (Canada)           ClubThiel (PA)                                 NCAA IIITiftarea HS (GA)                      HS Vincentian Academy (PA)        HS Waubonsee CC (IL)                JUCO IIIWestern Connecticut              NCAA IIIWhitesville Trinity HS (KY)        HSWickcliffe HS (OH)                   HSWisconsin Lutheran                 NCAA IIIWisconsin Superior                  NCAA III

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