To say that Austin Hornbuckle and Mack Howard love baseball is an understatement. Their mothers, Lindsey Hornbuckle and Savanah Howard, can't remember a time when either of them wasn't playing baseball even as a very small child.
Both boys have always played, learning the game from their dads. The father/son duos work on skills, go to hitting practice, throw in the backyard and watch baseball whenever it's on TV. Since Austin and Mack were able, they have played for the rec department and then the travel baseball world opened up.
Austin plays for the 5 Star Shockers coached by Tyler Baugh from Albertville, 5 Star Sports Complex. He loves his teammates and coaches, and every, single player works unbelievably hard to help their team succeed.
This past year, Austin has played in multiple tournaments, and he currently has eight championship rings and a runner-up ring and necklace. Austin said his favorite win was this last tournament in Trussville, the World Series tournament. Austin has played multiple positions such as left field, right field and pitcher for the 5 Star Shockers.
Mack plays catcher for the 8U Shockers based out of Boaz coached by Kyle Bennett. He has made lifelong friendships and learned so much more than just the game of baseball. Mack has 5 championship rings, a championship belt buckle, 2 runner up necklaces, and a Dinger Ring for hitting an over the fence homerun. His favorite tournament is also the recent World Series in Trussville.
Savanah and Lindsey agree, "Both teams, players and coaches work hard towards the goals they set for the team. But as moms, baseball teaches so many more lessons than just winning and losing. We love that these teams cheer for each other and encourage each other with every play and at-bat. Baseball is also teaching our sons and all of these wonderful kids about how teamwork, perseverance, resiliency, attitude and effort are simply important life-lessons that will carry them beyond the diamond."
The 5 Star Shockers and 8U Shockers are working hard to get ready to travel to Chattanooga this weekend for the World Series tournament that begins on Thursday.
"We hope that both teams bring the championship back to Alabama," Lindsey said. "This tournament will be the last tournament before taking a short break and picking back up this fall."