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Duty commitments got in the way of her attending the All-Air Force women’s softball tryout camp last year, so Darlene Rayburn of Okinawa’s Kadena Air Base plans to make the most of her second chance.

Rayburn was one of four Pacific Air Forces airmen selected for the camp, scheduled for Aug. 29 to Sept. 15 at Hill Air Force Base, Utah.

“I’m excited,” said Rayburn, 28, a staff sergeant with Kadena’s 353rd Operational Support Squadron.

Rayburn — along with returning All-Air Force second baseman Katherine Braun of Kadena and, from South Korea, Kenyetta Williams of Taegu Air Base and Carley Edwards of Osan Air Base — will vie for 15 spots on the All-Air Force team. Rayburn was selected to attend camp last year, but had to withdraw due to a deployment.

Army won the tournament last year.

“We want to bring home the gold this time,” said Rayburn, an infielder who hails from Mong Mong, Guam.

Coaching the All-Air Force team for the first time will be Cheryl Trapnell, the most decorated women’s ballplayer in All-Armed Forces history.

The All-Armed Forces tournament takes place Sept. 16-21 at Hill Air Force Base. The tournament serves as a qualifier for the All-Armed Forces team, which will play in the Amateur Softball Association’s women’s national tournament Sept. 27-30 in Oklahoma City.


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