Orange County program makes softball accessible for athletes in wheelchairs

Rachel Brown Image
Tuesday, April 12, 2022
OC program makes softball accessible for athletes with disabilities
Amateur athletes are competing at softball in wheelchairs for a new effort underway in Orange County.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (KABC) -- Organizations supporting people with disabilities came together in Anaheim to play ball on a specially built turf field.

The name of the game is to form the first wheelchair softball team in SoCal.

"There's about 26 teams around the country and we only have one in California so we're really trying to get more excitement around it, to get more kids and adults playing wheelchair softball at a high level," said Keith Wallace, commissioner of the National Wheelchair Softball Association.

Mikie Guerrero became wheelchair-bound after a bad car accident. Nevertheless, he was and still is a competitive athlete.

"Baseball is my favorite sport. And it's softball so it's basically the same thing. Just love getting out of the house, getting active, meeting new people. Everything. It was great. It was an amazing experience," said Guerrero.

He and others here say organizations supporting disabled athletes like the Triumph Foundation, OC Miracle League and SoCal Adaptive Sports are crucial.

"I didn't know any of this existed. I didn't have a friend in a wheelchair and then I moved out here and I found sports. And I was like wow I can still do that. And just to be out here on the field it gives me all the feels all over again," said Amber-Lynn Machowski with the Triumph Foundation.

"We're just going to keep creating so that people with disability have an opportunity to play," said Michael Rosenkrantz with SoCal Adaptive Sports.