DMA softball team gets new head coach

On military bases around the world, the arrival of summer means the start of softball leagues. For the troops between deployments, it’s a welcome opportunity to relax and hang out with friends and family.

Petty Officer Andrew Gordon is attempting to lead the Defense Media Activity (DMA) team to the top. It’s his first time as a coach, but he has a strong multi-branch team behind him.

If he can pull it off, the bragging rights are significant.

The Fort Meade softball league consists of 17 teams, and it’s serious about its business. It’s organized by the department of Morale Welfare and Recreation and the competition is friendly-but-fierce.

Gordon said the trick is to balance the experienced players with the noobies, and still be competitive.

“We’re here to have fun, so everyone will get into the rotation, but it’s important that we all show up to practice to work on our skills.”

As a U.S. Sailor, Gordon has deployed several times. Being out to sea, away from his wife and two children, is tough. That’s why he’s making the most out of his time on land.

“These are the best times, right now. I’m here with my family, friends, and we won!”

We “won” might be an understatement.

Final score: DMA 12 – Black Knights 1

Defense Media Activity triumphs as Staff Judge Advocates stay winless

Opening tipoff, the only time the game was tied. Photo by Glenn Slaughter.

The bad dream just wouldn’t end as SJA found themselves behind and struggling to keep up in a 59-37 loss to DMA on Feb. 11.

The status of these two teams couldn’t be more different at the halfway point of the regular season. While the Staff Judge advocates watched their last chance at a .500 record fade, 1st place Defense Media Activity celebrated as the current rulers of the league.

Only several fans were in attendance at the Murphy Field House gym but the stands could’ve been full with all the noise generated by DMA. They seemed more motivated from the start, forming a circle and clapping a rhythmic beat as they waited for the opening buzzer. With 21 points, DMA Power Forward Darien Kenney continued to be a key to victory.

“We came out here and we did exactly what we said we would do. We were hyping each other up. At the end of the day it’s all about the team, putting ourselves together and scoring points,” Kenney said.

An exhausted SJA defense can only watch as Kenney sinks another two-pointer on his way to an impressive 21 points. Photo by Glenn Slaughter.

The size of each team probably made an impact as well. DMA has a 13-man roster and was able to substitute fresh players every few minutes. The opposing SJA players were forced to play nonstop, as their team only had the minimum of five.

The defeat was softened by the fact that the Judges, who work together, experienced bonding through shared trauma. SJA’s John Cheney kept a positive outlook as he caught his breath after the game.

    “We just keep working on our teamwork, getting better. We need to get faster than everyone else. It doesn’t always work but there’s always the next possession,” Cheney said.

The Judges get their best shot at a win this season when they face the team from the Navy Information Operations Center. With only three wins, NIOC has struggled to score points lately.

Defense Media Activity faces the 5-2 Vikings next week. It’s safe to say that DMA is on everyone’s minds and they’ve got a fat red target on their backs.

For more information on league standings visit



Can Staff Judge Advocates terminate Defense Media Activity’s league dominance?


The clock’s ticking for the legal warriors of SJA when they take on first-place DMA and their public affairs squad this Thursday at Fort Meade’s Murphy Field House.

The winless Staff Judge Advocates shouldn’t be picky about who they beat, but a victory here would be extra sweet. They must still feel the sting of the 38-24 smack down Defense Media Activity handed them two weeks ago. Thursday’s game marks the halfway point of the season, and the last chance for SJA to salvage a winning record. DMA is fighting to keep their number one playoff spot.

DMA Power Forward Darien Kenney, with 13 points in their last outing, will be a key to success.

“We need to come out and communicate, hustle and play hard. That’s what it’ll take to win this game. We have a lot more heart than most teams out here,” he said.

The Fort George G. Meade intramural basketball league consists of 18 teams, split between division I and II, with a 12-game regular season. The top six teams from each division go to the playoffs. Each team represents a command on the base.

Created over 20 years ago, the league is funded by the department of Morale Welfare and Recreation. The importance of healthy competition was summarized by league organizer, Sports Specialist Beth Downs:

“The big thing is for the units and squadrons to come out and have camaraderie and friendly competition. It’s good to get PT while taking your mind off the day-to-day work, which can be pretty stressful.”

It’s free to watch but a CAC card is required for entrance to the building. Game time is Feb. 11, 6:30pm.

For more information on league standings visit