Friday February 22nd, 2019
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2011 Conference USSSA Hall of Fame Classic Recap

 

 

 2011 Conference USSSA

"Hall of Fame Classic"

 Kissimmee, Florida 

April 14-17

  

R&M takes on Bullshippers on Saturday morning at the HOF Dual

23 Conference USSSA teams traveled to Kissimmee, Florida to play in the annual Hall of Fame Classic (HOF) Men's Major tournament this past weekend.   The 4 days of softball consisted of two separate double elimination tournaments.   GTL Cartel/Demarini based out of the Seattle area battled Resmondo-Specialty Tank-Worth based out of Winterhaven, Florida for the championship of both tournaments.   These two major classified teams split the tournament championships one apiece as GTL went 5-0 to win the first tournament which started Thursday afternoon and concluded late Friday night.   Resmondo won the second tournament which started Saturday morning and ended Sunday afternoon, after GTL forced the "if" game.   GTL forced the "if" after losing early Saturday morning and won an amazing 8 straight in the loser's bracket.

Late Friday night finals between GTL (batting) and Resmondo (defending)

The tournament featured a little bit of everything – near perfect weather, major upsets, long bombs, and even a little fight between GTL and Combat/Laser Vision.   The games on the stadium field were broadcast for the most part and can still be viewed at: Click here to replay Streamed Games from HOF

The surprise teams of the weekend were Midwest Swing, a second year Conference 'B' team out of Indiana that won their first 3 games and 4 over all in the first tournament to pull out a 4th place finish.  

Also Down2EarthSports.com, a new Conference 'B' team from Georgia had a nice 6-4 record in the two tournaments and beat 4 'A' teams.  

Then there was Turano, a new 'B' team from Maryland that upset GTL on Saturday morning after GTL had just run the table in the first tournament.  Turano wound up 6-4 for the weekend including 3-0 vs 'B' teams. 

The final surprise was Darkside/TYJA out of Connecticut, a second year Conference team that moved to 'A' this year, who went 7-4 on the weekend.  They beat EWS, Shoppe, Pharmapar, The Scene, Famous, Turano, and D2E.  WOW!

On Monday morning, I know everyone that played was probably so sore they wonder why they torture their bodies like this.   But there are also a bunch of relatively new players and teams that have to feel like they really accomplished something special at the highest level of softball.   As a fan of the game, I think the 2011 season is off to a great start.   The parity looks to be even better than in 2010 which was much better than 2009.   Every conference team that I watched play this year, starting with AZM out in Las Vegas right through to Turano at the HOF is better than I initially thought they were.   And it looks like most of the Major and top 'A' teams that I thought were dominating have shown they are indeed human.

There were a number of complaints about the fact that it was just too many games for the top teams.  It would be interesting to explore the possibility of having one of the tournaments be a single elimination or be able to have teams just show up for the weekend tournament.

The ball used for this tournament was the Dudley ZN Stadium .47 core .525 compression and it was perfect for the stadium and baseball fields.   The Fortune Road fields I understand were using the classic-m Dudley and the fields were 325 feet all the way around.   (thanks to the reader that corrected me on the Fortune Road ball)

There were 27 teams over all (23 conference) from 17 different states.   The Conference welcomed back Pace, Primetime, and Turano/Angle Inn who have been away from the Conference for a year or more and broke into new areas of the country with new teams like Bullshippers from Pennsylvania, Doerflinger from Seattle and Down2Earth from Georgia among others.   The field of teams was filled out with 4 local 'C' teams from the Florida area, two of which, Dave's Place and Wiley's competed toe to toe with everyone else.

There were over 600 people watching the usssa.com live webcast of the stadium field at most times with a high of over 800 at one point.   I believe the next usssa broadcast will be at the Houston tournament the first week of June.

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R&M (white) takes on Rusty Bumgardner and Team Combat/Laser Vision in the stadium

Diamond #1 with its giant left and left center field netting on 330-390-410 dimensions

 

Diamond #2 at the Houston Astros Spring Training Facility with Pace out in the field

The entire loser's bracket was played over at the Fortune Road Complex about 1.5 miles away from Heritage Park.  Turano pitcher Eric Byrum pitches to The Scene/AJS outfielder Will Watson

  

The view from right field on diamond #1 with Suncoasts Adam Rockoff

The crowd heads for the exits after the winner's final Friday

Early morning Saturday starts the 2nd tournament.  Gold's Gym (batting) takes on Dave's Place (defending)

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Random videos of the Hall of Fame Classic

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"Hall of Fame Classic" Tournament Awards and Final Standings:

Tournament #1

Player Tournament Awards
Players Name
Plays For
Tournament MVP
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
Offensive Tournament MVP
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
Defensive Tournament MVP
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Team Combat/LaserVision/D2E/Supreme
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Team Combat/LaserVision/D2E/Supreme
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
Team Combat/LaserVision/D2E/Supreme
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
  
Place
State
Team
Team
Class
Wins
Loses
Ties
Runs
Scored
Runs
Allow
Avg
Runs
Avg
Allow
Avg
Diff
Max
Runs
1
WA
SPMensMajor
5
0
0
122
83
24.4
16.6
7.8
29
150
2
FL
SPMensMajor
4
2
0
144
102
24
17
7
28
110
3
WA
SPMensMajor
4
2
0
123
92
20.5
15.3
5.16
29
90
4
IN
SPMensB
4
2
0
119
119
19.8
19.8
0
39
180
5
FL
SPMensA
4
2
0
111
79
18.5
13.1
5.33
29
140
5
VA
SPMensA
4
2
0
123
115
20.5
19.1
1.33
24
140
7
GA
SPMensB
3
2
0
78
97
15.6
19.4
-3.8
35
160
7
FL
SPMensC
3
2
0
93
67
18.6
13.4
5.2
25
120
9
CT
SPMensA
3
2
0
95
68
19
13.6
5.4
27
100
9
MD
SPMensB
3
2
0
77
109
15.4
21.8
-6.4
24
150
9
CAS
SPMensA
3
2
0
101
72
20.2
14.4
5.8
26
100
9
FL
SPMensC
2
2
0
82
92
20.5
23
-2.5
32
0
13
GA
SPMensB
2
2
0
58
81
14.5
20.2
-5.7
23
140
13
SC
SPMensB
2
2
0
63
59
15.7
14.7
1
19
80
13
FL
SPMensB
1
2
0
68
53
22.6
17.6
5
28
140
13
WA
SPMensMajor
1
2
0
51
51
17
17
0
26
40
17
TN
SPMensA
1
2
0
64
75
21.3
25
-3.6
31
40
17
IA
SPMensA
1
2
0
50
75
16.6
25
-8.3
25
40
17
WA
SPMensB
1
2
0
47
68
15.6
22.6
-7
23
120
17
TXN
SPMensB
1
2
0
60
61
20
20.3
-0.3
27
120
17
PA
SPMensB
0
2
0
20
40
10
20
-10
12
120
17
NYU
SPMensB
0
2
0
29
51
14.5
25.5
-11
18
120
17
OHO
SPMensB
0
2
0
33
50
16.5
25
-8.5
22
120
17
MI
SPMensA
0
2
0
29
38
14.5
19
-4.5
21
40
25
FL
SPMensA
0
2
0
18
40
9
20
-11
12
20
25
FL
SPMensD
0
2
0
27
34
13.5
17
-3.5
14
0
25
IL
SPMensA
0
2
0
29
43
14.5
21.5
-7
15
20
 

Tournament #2

Player Tournament Awards
Players Name
Plays For
Tournament MVP
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
Offensive Tournament MVP
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
Defensive Tournament CO-MVP
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
Defensive Tournament CO-MVP
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
Suncoast Reebok
All Tournament Team
SHOPPE / TEAM TPS / D2E / ELITE
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
SHOPPE / TEAM TPS / D2E / ELITE
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
SHOPPE / TEAM TPS / D2E / ELITE
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
Suncoast Reebok
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
All Tournament Team
GTL Cartel/DeMarini
 

 

Place
State
Team
Team
Class
Wins
Loses
Ties
Runs
Scored
Runs
Allow
Avg
Runs
Avg
Allow
Avg
Diff
Max
Runs
1
FL
SPMensMajor
5
1
0
164
99
27.3
16.5
10.8
36
150
2
WA
SPMensMajor
8
2
0
265
199
26.5
19.9
6.6
45
110
3
TN
SPMensA
4
2
0
130
110
21.6
18.3
3.33
42
180
4
FL
SPMensA
4
2
0
126
108
21
18
3
44
160
5
CT
SPMensA
4
2
0
174
146
29
24.3
4.66
37
140
5
IA
SPMensA
3
2
0
112
115
22.4
23
-0.6
34
140
7
MD
SPMensB
3
2
0
109
125
21.8
25
-3.2
27
160
7
WA
SPMensMajor
2
2
0
93
117
23.2
29.2
-6
34
60
9
TXN
SPMensB
3
2
0
80
77
16
15.4
0.6
21
150
9
GA
SPMensB
3
2
0
115
114
23
22.8
0.19
27
150
9
CAS
SPMensA
3
2
0
145
100
29
20
9
41
100
9
WA
SPMensMajor
1
2
0
90
99
30
33
-3
46
50
13
NYU
SPMensB
2
2
0
73
87
18.2
21.7
-3.5
32
140
13
FL
SPMensB
2
2
0
59
69
14.7
17.2
-2.5
22
80
13
SC
SPMensB
2
2
0
78
92
19.5
23
-3.5
25
80
13
IL
SPMensA
1
2
0
65
79
21.6
26.3
-4.6
24
80
17
FL
SPMensC
1
2
0
59
39
19.6
13
6.66
37
0
17
FL
SPMensD
1
2
0
25
30
8.33
10
-1.6
11
0
17
MI
SPMensA
1
2
0
25
33
8.33
11
-2.6
15
40
17
FL
SPMensA
0
2
0
41
64
20.5
32
-11.
26
40
17
IN
SPMensB
0
2
0
19
44
9.5
22
-12.
15
120
17
PA
SPMensB
0
2
0
39
53
19.5
26.5
-7
31
120
17
WA
SPMensB
0
2
0
15
45
7.5
22.5
-15
9
120
17
FL
SPMensC
0
2
0
23
34
11.5
17
-5.5
16
40
25
VA
SPMensA
0
2
0
26
53
13
26.5
-13.
14
20
25
GA
SPMensB
0
2
0
20
34
10
17
-7
11
110
25
OHO
SPMensB
0
2
0
44
49
22
24.5
-2.5
26
110

 

 
 


 Team by team notes brought to you by:

 


Thank you to Stafford Connor and USSSA magazine for the team photos you see in this report


GTL Cartel/Demarini  GTGG 

Conf 'M' from Othello, WA  13-2 Record

GTL played 15 games in 4 days, win their second tournament of the season, and run their record against fellow Major teams to an astounding 8-1.   It was obvious to all of the fans watching the broadcast that GTL is playing better defense behind the great pitching of Geno Buck than the other Major teams.   There is also a sense of speed on both sides of the ball that GTL possesses that the other major teams do not.   This combination along with a confidence and a "brothers in a trench hole" mentality pushes GTL to what I believe will be a #1 spot in the opening season computer rankings.  

They need to keep up their Conference points lead also so that when the Chicago tournament rolls around and the 2011 points begin to decide the seedings, they are still #1 because everyone wants to see if they get the favored game times, fields, and umpires that traditionally goes to the top team.

GTL was sitting McDonald and Geno Buck towards the end of the second tournament but I don't believe they were injured at least not seriously.   It was very impressive to see how hard GTL was still hitting the ball after that many games played.

At some point we just have to give credit to the GTL "front office" for putting a really great, young, and competitive team together.   Your hard work is paying off big.

Lineup of a random game:
Bowlin   RF
Howard   C
Buck     P
Filby    EH
Larsen   1B
Pokraka  LF
Cordova  2B
Formosa  3B
Branch   CF
Dress    SS
Pesso    MI
Newbill 

When the offensive MVP of the 2nd tournament gets posted it may very well be GTL CF Jason Branch

GTL relief pitcher Brendt Newbill got the start and the win in the first game of the tourny #2 championship

Chris Larsen's transformation into a Major level hitter that uses the whole field is now complete

GTL 2B Victor Cordova and 1B Sean McDonald in the Championship game

GTL pitcher Geno Buck was MVP of tournament #1 just like Vegas


 

Resmondo-Specialty Tank / Worth  GTGG/  

Conf 'M' from Winter Haven, FL  9-3  Record

Resmondo's only losses on the weekend were to GTL (3 times), but they win the second tournament and are the favorites to win in Kansas City in two weeks so they should pull close to even in the Conference points by the end of April.

Resmondo played without center fielder Bobby Hughes and first baseman Howie Krause who won the offensive MVP in the first tournament was injured for the second tournament.  Scott Striebel did a solid job in CF and Striebel and Purcell particularly look like they put in a lot of work in the offseason and are in great shape.

At the end of a very long tournament and after GTL made some incredible plays in the first inning of the "if" game Resmondo was able to still put up impressive double figure innings in the 2nd and 3rd to put GTL away.

Some interesting stats from pointstreak (which are not even close to complete except for the main field) shows Greg Connell hit 15 homer's on the week and Andy Purcell had 14 doubles.

Lineup of a random game:
DeDonatis  SS
Connell    2B
Fulk       1B
Baker      MI
Purcell    P
Wallace    C
Bisbee     RF
Rainwater  LF
Striebel   CF
Eisenhower 3B
Rhines     3B
Krause 
 

Resmondo's 3B Mike Rhines has some "big" shoes to fill with the departure of Dennis Rulli

 

Resmondos BJ Fulk was pulling it hard all week long

Don Dedonatis Jr. goes head first in the winner's final of the first tournament

Jeff Wallace helped power Resmondo to the championship of tournament #2

Resmondo waits before their first game on Thursday

Resmondo management held their collective breath when Andy Purcell dove into homeplate and temporarily appeared to be injured


 Suncoast Reebok 

Conf 'A' from Parish, FL  8-4  Record

Suncoast gets a 5th place and a 4th place at the HOF.   They lost 3 of their 4 games to Major teams.  They struggled some with offensive consistency and I realize the wind played a factor for all the teams depending which field you were on.   Suncoast also tired out a little more than the other teams.   But all in all a good week when you go 8-4 against the best teams.   Travis Lane and Brian Justice are nursing injuries.   Lossen White seemed to be hitting pretty good at the leadoff spot.  Garris is back along with the energy of newcomer's Ryan Robbins and Adam Rockoff.  

Put Suncoast in with the rest of the teams that I think are better than I originally thought.

Lineup of a random game:
White      P
Robbins    RF
Justice    3B
Garris     C
Bean       1B
Rockoff    CF
Lane       2B
Trotter    1B
Roberts    LF
Nelson     MI
Reyna      SS

Hank Garris is back for Suncoast

Suncoast utility man Dan Bean


Darkside/TYJA   

Conf 'A' from New Britain, CT  7-4  Record

Darkside beat the who's who of the 'A' division and looked good doing so by scoring lots of runs.   They added Dirty Sanchez to the team recently and the offense is led by the top with Billy Moore, Neil Haglund, Baumgartner, Robinson, and Smith.   Very impressive when I was around their games.   They end up with a 9th place finish and a 5th, giving them a foundation of points that could lead them into the Major World Series.   Darkside should be a tough out on the 300 foot fields. 

Moore       CF
Taormina    LF
Haglund     RF
Baumgartner EH
Robinson    3B
Smith  M.     C
Encarnacion 2B
MONGELLI    1B
Sanchez      P
Lipschutz    SS
Belding       MI
Shipley    

 

Darkside celebrates another solid victory

Matt Smith is a big RBI producer for Darkside

Darkside left fielder Neil Haglund scored a pile of runs


Turano/Angle Inn/Sports 55/LB

Conf 'B' from Baltimore, MD  6-4  Record

Turano leaves Florida with signature wins over EWS and GTL.   They are now the only non-major team to have beaten one of the 3 true Major teams this year.   They also had a nice extra innings win over The Scene/AJS.   Turano is led by the pitching of Eric Byrum and solid linedrive hitting throughout the lineup.  

Cambridge  CF
Garcia     LF
Montenegro 2B
Paturzo    RF
Zambrana   3B
Yarbor     EH
Lohr       EH
Byrum      P
Avellanda  C
Turano     1B
Rush       SS
Ruble      MI

  

Turano celebrates their walkoff homerun win over The Scene.  Homer by Steven Yarbor

 

Greg Zambrana has a big homer in the extra inning win over The Scene

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Some really bad video of the walkoff by Yarbor


Down2EarthSports.com/Worth   

Conf 'B' from Baxley, GA   6-4  Record

Drew and the boys from Down2Earth (D2E) adjusted quickly to the good ZN balls and scored 6 quality wins including a signature win over Shoppe where they led 26-12 early and held on 35-31.   D2E is a scrappy 'B' team that upset 4, count them, 4 'A' teams.   And yet they probably walk away feeling like they left something on the table in that late Thursday night loss to Midwest Swing to go to the final 4.

Bridger   SS
Tindell   2B
Greer     MI
Scott J   P
Scott J   1B
Grant     CF
Griffin   C
Payne     LF
Connell   RF 

 

D2E's Carlton Griffin

D2E sponsor/manager Drew Dubberly celebrates an opening round win over Combat/Transat 13-6


Famous Sports/Logo Express/Easton   

Conf 'A' from Alta Loma, CA  6-4  Record

Famous had a bit of an up and down weekend finishing 9th in both tournaments.   They lost a close one early to GTL 19-16.   The interesting thing about Famous is that when they lose they are always within 5 runs so when they learn to close out games, like the extra inning loss to Pharmapar, then this team could make it into the top 5 in the computer rankings.   I believe Famous had their whole team in Florida and they are off to a solid start to the season.

C.Hansen   SS
J.Harrison LF
E.Vega     1B
P.White    MI
B.Autry    C
M.Bunn     CF
F.Yeilding 3B
J.Gallegos 2B
C.Munger   EH
R.Haymans  P
A.Elliot   RF

Phil White joined Famous this week


Shoppe / Team TPS / D2E / Elite  

Conf 'A' from McKenzie, TN  5-4  Record

Shoppe escapes with some good points after a bad start.   In the first tournament they lose a shootout in the second game to Down2EarthSports.com 35-31 in a game they were down big.   Then they drop to the loser's bracket and "no-show" in a 27-5 loss to Darkside.   With all of Friday to sit around out of the tournament, Shoppe answered the bell and beat 4 straight 'A' teams before dropping to Resmondo and GTL.

Shoppe has moved Brad Reckart to SS (interesting), Matt King was injured, Tim Cocco was blasting a pile of homer's as usual, and they got Jamie Gordon back after missing all of 2010.   This is an interesting team.   They scored 25 runs in the 4th inning to put away Laser Vision in a game that Tim Cocco had 5 HR's and 13 RBI on the stadium field!   That may have been the longest inning in Conference history when you factor in the pitching changes and the arguing of a correctly overturned call at first base.

Shoppe is good but needs to continue to prove they can compete against the Major teams.

Lineup of a random game:
McLamb   LF
Thompson 1B
Cocco    C
Genter   EF
Reckart  SS
Powers   3B
Boothe   RF
Hatfield 2B
Cowart   CF
Moon     P
Spicer   P

The Shoppe shortstop is now their former left fielder Brad Reckart

 

Shane "Cheese" Spicer had some mixed results in his starting debut

Chad McLamb has joined Shoppe and leads off

Shoppe's Jamie Gordon is finally back from a long injury

Another Shoppe pickup Cory Boothe hits a homerun


Team Combat/LaserVision/D2E/Supreme  

Conf 'M' from Kent, WA  5-4  Record

Much like Las Vegas, Laser Vision was unable to put anything together against GTL.   In the first tournament they cruised through the first two rounds and then got beat by GTL.   In the loser's bracket they win two more and then lose to Resmondo 28-24.   In the second tournament Jean Shoppe puts up a 25 run inning on them in their second game and Laser Vision loses 42-24 and drops to the loser's bracket where they have the misfortune of running into GTL in their first game and lose 34-20.

Laser Vision is now 0-5 against Major teams this season.   They brought in Andy Vitcak to help Billy Messina.  Scott Brown didn't play a whole lot.   Robo is still out.   This team needs an outfielder, a utility man, and a tournament where they can go and be the "big fish in a little pond" and get some confidence going and try to rebuild their approach to playing the other Major teams come the Dudley and Smoky.   The problems are mainly on the defensive side of the ball.

Lineup of a random game:
Baker      CF
Wegman     3B
Helmer     1B
Bumgardner 1B
Kendrick   LF
Stephens   RF
McCraw     C
Rulli      MI
Beggs      2B
McGavin    SS

Vitcak     P

A frustrated Team Combat/Laser Vision team got in a scrap with GTL.  #24 (Stephens) on the right side of the picture has GTL's Jason Branch in a standing guillotine

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Video of the bench clearing

Former EWS pitcher Andy Vitcak left Shoppe and headed to Combat/Laser Vision

Combat LF Jason Kendrick takes a break during a pitching change


 

R&M Metals/Troupe/TCP/Easton

Conf 'A' from Waterloo, IA  4-4  Record

R&M battled Pace to a 25-18 win in their opener then beat the teams they were supposed to beat and had a big win over EWS and a near win over GTL.

So for the most part they competed against who they were supposed to compete against but seemed to have big unexplained power outages against Resmondo and Laser Vision.   Maybe its the pitching or maybe the pucker factor, who knows.

R&M has a murderer row of power hitters with Kreider, Fields, Greinert, and Staats which is fun to see (unless they are playing a Major team on a stadium).   Firebaugh at SS is a nice addition this year, Biggons did ok at pitcher.   This team needs a backup pitcher and another outfielder at least.

Lineup of a random game:
Zirkle     CF
Yerkes     P
Fields     1B
Greinert   C
Staats     RF
Kreider    EH
Firebaugh  SS
Decker     MI
Middendorf 3B
Irvine     LF
Wethington

R&M celebrates the base clearing double by Mike Irvine 

The left side of the R&M defense is 3B Aaron Middendorf and SS Chris Firebaugh

R&M's Chris Greinert had the longest homer of the tournament back on diamond #1 against Turano until Greg Connell hit the ball over the batter's eye in the stadium

R&M pitcher Kyle "Biggons" Yerkes and CF Brian Zirkle score


 Gold's Gym

Conf 'B' from Dallas, TX  4-4  Record

Gold's Gym salvaged what looked to be a disastrous weekend eventhough they weren't playing all that bad when they knocked off Midwest Swing and The Scene in the loser's bracket of the 2nd tournament.   Gold's Gym's young players continue to improve and the team had a respectable showing against Resmondo on the stadium field when they lost 27-21


Lineup of a random game:
Spurlin    3B
John       LF
Palacol    1B
Smitherman LF
Hensley    P
Mayes      SS
McGavic    RF
Brooks     CF
Short      2B
Brantzeg   C

 

I'm not sure how this Gold's Gym batter got a hit when he had his eyes closed?


 Gas It/Easton/Lewis Lawn Care

Conf 'B' from Blacksburg, SC  4-4  Record

 

I was only able to see Gas It once and thats when they opened the second tournament on the stadium field with a 25-4 whooping of a dead tired Midwest Swing team.   Gas-It easily has their best team in the last couple years and the HOF with 4 wins is probably their best Conference tournament play ever.    This team should sneak up on people and hard hitters like Zack Dellinger and Blaine Bolin, mixed in with the all around play of CF Jason Gilfillan and pitcher Brandon Jonas should give Gas It a nice season to build off of for 2012.

Lineup of a random game:
Leonhardt  1B
Gilfillan  CF
Bolin      C
Hunter     LF
Guido      2B
Clark      MI
Dellinger  3B
lloyd      RF
Brewer     EH
Blake      SS
Jonas      P

 

Gas It left side of the infield

Gas It CF Jason Gilfillan has a pro baseball background

Gas It turns two on Midwest Swing

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This is for Brandon Blake's grandma


 

Team 454 Emerald/Worth

Conf 'A' from Glen Allen, VA   4-4  Record

454 Worth winds up 4-4 as they gave a 7 run lead away against Pace to start the second tournament and they come away with no true quality wins for a team looking to compete at the top of the 'A' division.   This team has a lot of last years Scene and Woodlaw players as well as a T&R Stucco feel to them.   This team should be solid on the 300 foot fields.   Bubba Mack and Kyle Moyer really seemed to be hitting well in the games I witnessed but too many walks and a struggling infield defensively didn't help.

R.Mack    CF
T.Mattox  3B
J.Dutch   LF
k.moyer   C
D.Rogers  2B
M.Mabe    1B
W.Rhew    MI
B.Griffin RF
K.Bazat   SS
K.Johnson P
C.Byars   P

454 second baseman Don Rogers

454 middle man William Rhew


Midwest Swing / Miken

Conf 'A' from Evansville, IN   4-4  Record

Midwest Swing made a run to the final 4 much like EWS and Logo Express did in 2010.  They slipped by close games against The Scene 18-17 and Pharmapar 19-16 and found them in a late Thursday night game against another unlikely team, Down2Earth, to decide who was going to the semi-finals of the winner's bracket.  They ended up run ruling D2E 25-10 and then lost the Friday morning semi final to Resmondo by the run rule.  In the loser's bracket they regrouped to beat 454 Worth 39-20 before being knocked out by Laser Vision.  In the second tournament a dead tired Midwest dropped two straight.

Midwest got to spend a lot of the weekend on the stadium field and gave us some great new names to add to the prospect list like 3B and 3-hole hitter Rick Potter, 1B Ryan Smith, shortstop Michael Noonan, CF Evan Gallmeier, and pitcher Brent Sharon. 

Also make sure you check out the game between Laser Vision and Midwest as left fielder Cody Gilbert made or almost made 4 spectacular catches.

Midwest basically already has more quality wins than they had in all of 2010.  Nice.

Lineup of a random game:
Gallmeier  CF
Noonan     SS
Potter     3B
Mazzier    1B
Gilbert    LF
Mazzier    C
Geiersbach MI
Smith      EH
Hall       2B
Sharon     P
Sterling   RF 

Midwest Swing's new pitcher is Brent Sharon from Minnesota

Midwest SS Michael Noonan

Midwest Swing's player/sponsor Todd Mazzier


Combat/Pharmapar/Transat/Holiday

Conf 'M' from Seattle, WA   3-4  Record

Pharmapar went 3-4 and lost every other game.   Their big win was an extra inning victory over Famous 34-30 in a game where Conference newcomer Shawn Deroche hit a grans slam in the top of the 8th inning.   We now know that Pharmapar is not a Major team as they are classed.   They are most definitely an 'A' team working towards becoming a Major team.   Pharmapar has a long way to go but they are good enough to have a fun season.   Look for the every other game winning rollercoaster to continue when playing 'B' and above teams.

S.Formosa    RF
M.Taylor     LF
F.Henry      EH
M.DILL       C
J.Gare       2B
 L.Chauvette PH
J.Oram       SS
 A.Francoer  SS
T.Bowser     3B
S.Deroche    1B
C.Chiasson   CF
D.Warren     P
O.Forest     MI

 

Manager George Phillips has his work cut out for him this year

Combat/Pharmapar pitcher Derek Warren is going with the dreadlock leather glove this year

 


The Scene/A.J.S./Easton/D2E

Conf 'A' from Fort Myers, FL   3-4  Record

The Scene let 2 games slip away in the end.  One to Midwest Swing in the stadium, a game which they led most of the way, and one in extra innings to Turano.   The Scene has a nice team with their last minute pickups and should be middle of the pack 'A'.

Lineup of a random game:
Watson    SS
Arlett     3B
Zaciewski  EH
Dennis     C
Williams   1B
Doggett    LF
Parfitt    CF
Whittenton 2B
Whaley     MI
Barnowsky  P
Willis     RF

 

The Scene won the Scott Zaciewski free agent race after Wood Law folded

 


Team photos provided by USSSATODAY Magazine

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alt

  


A big thanks to my sponsor's – USSSA, Down2EarthSports.com, GameTimeSupply.com, and MojoSportsGear.com

I will be in Kansas City for the next Conference tournament.

A note about the softballcenter.com weather module on the front page.  If you double click the city that is shown you can change the city to whatever city you want.

Also don't forget to click the "like" or "share" on facebook buttons for any articles you particularly enjoyed.  Thanks.

Link to the rest of my pictures

Link to the  Bracket/Stats for HOF Tournament #1

Link to the  Bracket/Stats for HOF Tournament #2

Link to the tournament in KC when ready

Link to the Phoenix tournament when ready

Link to the USSSA Point Standings and Stats

Here are some other pics from the Hall of Fame Classic:

 

Pace is back in the Conference with improved offense.  Here they celebrate Tony Mack's grand slam

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Dave's Place MI Brad Stillwell hits against Laser Vision.  Dave's Place was the best of the non-conference teams at 3 wins and 4 losses.  They finished an impressive 7th place in the first tournament

Wiley's Supreme was another Florida 'C' team that played well as they went 3-4

Team Combat/Transat, the Canadian team that was trying out to make the Major team (Pharmapar) went a disapointing 0-4

2010 Cincinnati player of the year Brad Tabler couldn't help Blitz from an 0-4 start

Sinister is off to a slow start (1-4), even with necomer Reggie Schulte formerly with Mr. D's and FBI in 2010

Former Shoppe SS Earl Bryant leads Primetime back into the Conference.  But they had a slow start (2-4)

Bullshippers feature veteran Donny Meyett but failed to score a victory in their Conference debut

Pharmapar manager George Phillips talks with Darkside manager Mark Weber about a controversial call

Doerflinger Software team had a tough HOF tourny going 1-4.  Sponsor Ric Doerflinger pictured.  Hang in there.

 

I did get one picture of EWS!   I thought I missed them after they were banished to Fortune Road

The umpire was exceptional at the Osceola Fields.  Very few missed calls and a number of overturned calls which were correctly reversed.

These Resmondo outfielder gloves made a bunch of great catches all week long

Darkside left fielder Mark Taormina looks for the beach

Guess who's feet?

 

Doerflinger LF Joey Smith  – this ones for SoftballCenter.com fan Danielle

 

As always send question, corrections, comments, and criticism's to

DW@softballcenter.com


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