April 16, 2018

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia head baseball coach Brian O’Connor announced the signing of nine-year-old John “Parker” Staples at a press conference held at Disharoon Park on Monday.

The Waynesboro native was welcomed to the program today during a special ceremony in the field level club at Disharoon Park. Staples signed his draft day letter in the presence of the entire Virginia Cavalier baseball team.

“In our program we talk about how sports mirror life and in order to be successful you must understand the importance of having courage and strength during challenging times.” O’Connor said in his opening remarks. “When we heard the story of our newest recruit we definitely knew that we needed for him to be part of our team,”

The Cavaliers connected to Staples through Team Impact, a national nonprofit headquartered in Boston, MA that connects children facing serious or chronic illnesses with college athletic teams, forming life-long bonds and life-changing outcomes. Staples was diagnosed with Lymphoma in 2017. 

As an official member of the baseball team. As a team member, John will attend Cavaliers practices, games, team dinners, events, and more. 

“The guys on our team have the ability to impact one individual but a guy like Parker impacts the 34 guys on our roster,” added O’Connor.

CBS19 Coverage: http://www.newsplex.com/content/news/UVAs-newest-signing-shows-strength-through-adversity-479923433.html

NBC29 Coverage: http://www.nbc29.com/story/37969734/9-year-old-parker-staples-signs-with-virginia-baseball

Daily Progress: http://www.dailyprogress.com/cavalierinsider/waynesboro-youngster-has-a-day-to-remember-at-disharoon-park/article_7d9ee2ca-e761-5e00-a7c1-2159edeec7d8.html

News Virginian: http://www.dailyprogress.com/newsvirginian/sports/the-cavalier-kid-waynesboro-boy-fighting-cancer-joins-uva-ball/article_7dbb490a-41c0-11e8-944d-23eb366c1082.html

WHSV: http://www.whsv.com/content/sports/Waynesboro-9-year-old-signs-with-Virginia-Baseball-team–479925683.html