My Y Story: Bill, Pat, Dan, Wes, Paul, and John

If you visit the Lockport Family YMCA in the morning, you’ll likely hear the sound of a group of friends playing a game of Pickleball in the gym. Pickleball is a fast-growing sport that incorporates elements of tennis, badminton, and ping pong. Bill and Pat Ossont, Wes Pickreign, Paul Vaughan, John Kausner, and Dan Malte say they play Pickleball for the exercise, comradery, and fun. But in less than two weeks, the group will travel to Cortland, New York to join more than 400 other Pickleball players at the Empire State Senior Games, being held June 11-14.

Bill Ossont has been playing Pickleball for 40 years. He plays every day and leads instructional lessons at the Y to help others learn the skills of the game. This will be Bill’s second time competing in the Empire State Senior Games. He plans on playing with his wife Pat in the Mixed Doubles category, and then in the Men’s Doubles with his partner, Dan Malte.

Wes Pickreign will join his partner from Syracuse in Cortland to compete in the Men’s Doubles. Wes has been playing Pickleball for the last three years, learning from his friend Bill. Most days, you’ll find Wes on the court working on his game. He says Pickleball can be addicting, but what he enjoys most is the people, exercise, and sportsmanship.

Paul Vaughan and John Kausner will be partners in the Men’s Doubles. They have both been playing for the last two years. This will be their first time at the games.

The group has a passion for the game that can be seen on the courts while they are playing or teaching. They are constantly talking to each other about a shot, a rule, or a play, all while building relationships and having fun. Pickleball has grown in popularity over the last few years, and if you’re looking to get involved, the group encourages you to do your homework by learning the rules of the game.

Good luck to Bill, Pat, Dan, Wes, Paul, and John as they prepare for the Empire State Senior Games. Your friends from the Y will be there in spirit cheering you on!

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