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Darren Zack enters the 2010 ISC Hall of Fame

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Darren Zack during the 1995 ISC World Tournament in Sioux City, Iowa, where he set several individual pitching records.

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“I’ll play until I can’t anymore. What would a summer be without playing ball, eh?” – Darren Zack

GARDEN RIVER FIRST NATION, CANADA – The big man – all 6-feet-4 and some 270 pounds – stands poised on the pitching rubber 46-feet away from his catcher. Charlie Hendricks squats, flashes his fingers, and spots his glove up and on the outside corner.

Darren Zack winds up, leaps, and unleashes a rise ball, a white, violently spinning blur. A split-second later – about the time it takes for a human to blink – the ball explodes into Hendricks glove right where he spotted it.

“Strike three!” bellows the umpire, thrusting his right arm in the air. This scene played out over and over in the mid to late 1990s when Hendricks caught Zack.

Memories? Hendricks has a few.

There was the time they teamed up as battery mates with the Toronto Gators against the New Zealand national team in Innerkip, Ontario. Rabid fastball fans packed the stands. And Zack was like a thoroughbred eager to burst from the starting gate.

“In our pregame huddle, Darren spoke out and said to us, ‘guys, take a look around. If the atmosphere and this crowd doesn’t get you up for this game, then something is wrong,’” Hendricks said. “I had the pleasure of catching him and everything worked. He was overpowering and definitely in the zone.”

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