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Meet the coaches
Heath Bender, the owner of The Zone, has loved baseball his entire life as a player, a fan, and coach. Selected by the Cleveland Indians, Heath knows what it takes to make it. He has coached youth baseball for some time, and is an exceptional hitting coach for young players. Heath's hitting expertise and enthusiasm for the game, coupled with positive teaching techniques, quickly aid in his players success rate. He shares a deep knowledge of the importance of excellent fundamentals. Heath has also created a program of select teams known as Dynasty Baseball. This program is rapidly growing in the Kingwood area with a number of teams in each age group.
 
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Gary Bender is a former high school baseball coach. Under Coach Bender's leadership, his high school team won 3 regional and sectionals and made the school's first state appearance in the history of the high school baseball program. Coach Bender also implemented a training camp program where more than 3000 students participated.

Coach Bender has had over 120 players go on to play college basesball, and has had 18 players play professionally.

Because of his success, he was chosen to be the head coach of the North team at the Olympia Festival at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. He also coached the West team in the Illinois Coaches All-Star game in 1994.

To his credit, Coach Bender has won over 299 games at the high school level, including: 6 conference, 4 regional, and 2 sectional championships. As a result of his success, Coach Bender was inducted into the Illinois High School Baseball Coaches Association's Hall of Fame.
 
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Andy Yount drew notice as a pitcher in high school for his fastball, which was measured as high as 97 mph. Andy began his baseball career 0-1 with a 2.76 ERA in five starts for the GCL Red Sox, whiffing 17 in 16 innings of work. Gulf Coast League managers voted him as the #2 prospect in the league that year, ahead of Carlos Beltran, Roy Halladay, and Kerry Wood. Andy was 10-0 with a 2.41 ERA as a senior, striking out 124 batters and allowing only 46 hits in 76 innings pitched. Due to his success in high school, Andy was the first round draft choice of the Boston Red Sox (15th overall selection) in the 1995 amateur draft.
 
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Jason Harvey was a four-year letterman on the varsity team, where he was selected the High School player of the year and was an A.S. All-State selection. From 1991-1993, Jason played at Blackhawk College, where he was a Jr. College All-American, and was ranked 7th nationally for stolen bases. From 1993-1995, Jason attended Aiken South Carolina University on a scholarship. His coaching experience includes 6 years at the High School varsity level, 5 years as a private instructor and Coach of the Rock Island Red Sox select team. Since 2006, Jason has been coaching at The Zone, where he instructs baseball and softball players of all ages, and manages several of the Dynasty select teams each year.
 
 
 
Lance Pendleton is a graduate of Kingwood High School. He was an All-District outfielder during his Jr. year at Kingwood, and was named the District MVP during his Sr. year. In 2003, Lance played for the Rice Owls. During his tenure at Rice, Lance helped the team win the NCAA National Championship in 2003, and win the Conference and advance to the Regional and Super-Regional playoffs in 2004 and 2005. He was awarded All-Conference Honors his sophomore year, and All-Academic honor his Junior year. Entering the MLB draft after his Junior year, Lance was selected in the fourth round by the New York Yankees as a right-handed pitcher. He returned to Rice during the off-season with the Yankees, and was able to complete his education, graduating from Rice with a Bachelors Degree in Sports Management. Lance continues to play for the Yankees, but during the off-season, Lance is committed to the development of youth baseball at The Zone, where he works to ensure the future of the nations pastime.
 
 
 
Anthony Young, affectionately known as "AY", attended Furr High School in Houston, Texas. A four-year letterman in varsity baseball, AY was drafted by the Montreal Expos out of high school, but chose to attend college instead. He received a full scholarship in football from the University of Houston, where he played both baseball and football.

Drafted by the New York Mets in 1987 as a pitcher, AY worked his way through the Mets farm system where, in 1990, he went 15-3 with a 1.65 ERA. As a result, he became the Mets #1 prospect, and his dream of playing in the majors was fulfilled when he was called up by the Mets in 1991. After three years with the Mets, AY was traded to the Chicago Cubs in 1994, where he played for two more seasons. With a strong desire to be closer to home, AY signed as a free agent with the Houston Astros in 1996.

Injuries from previous years finally began to take their toll on his right arm, and he was forced to retire. His love of baseball, however, is enduring, as is his commitment to teach our youth the many facits of the game.
 
 
 



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