October 19, 2023
The 7th annual “Battle for Bell” will take place on Thursday, October 19, 2023 at Hammons Field. Game One between the BBC Patriots and Evangel University Valor baseball teams will start at noon with gates opening at 11 AM for the first game. The main event with Drury University Panther baseball facing off against the Missouri State Bears will begin at 6:30 PM with gates opening at 5 PM.
This event honors the late Howard Bell, a former standout for Parkview High School and then Missouri State University. Bell returned post college to coach 28 seasons at Springfield’s Glendale High School and its American Legion program, earning well north of 800 combined victories. He became Glendale’s head coach in 2006 and ran the club through 2012, compiling an 87-69 record and winning four Ozark Conference championships. Coach Bell was an inspiration to hundreds of teens and never more so than in 2012 as he publicly fought Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). He passed away in March 2013 at the age of 48, but only after dropping by school every day to visit with students and to attend his team’s practices and games. His courage in this fight with a terminal disease inspired the “Battle For Bell” event which led to the funding of the first ALS Clinic in Southwest Missouri, located at CoxHealth.