Thursday January 20th, 2022

Added All Tournament Team —> 2019 GSL ‘A’ World tournament report!


Championship game of the GSL 'A' World between rivals Premier/TG and T&W


2019 GSL 'A' World


Cincinnati, OH


August 17th


Premier catcher Cory Boothe tags out GMS runner Zach Hartle at the plate!


SoftballCenter GSL 'A' picture album link


2019 GSL 'A' bracket and results link


2019 GSL 'A' archived games link


2019 GSL 'A' video clips link


Premier gets ready for the Championship game

The 2019 GSL 'A' World had just 8 teams but 5 of them were regional 'A' teams and the competition was good with some impressive defensive plays throughout.  In GSL 'A' you get 8 home runs per game per team plus a 'DHH' Designated Home Run Hitter.  The DHH can hit as many homers as he can without it counting against his teams total.  If that player happens to get walked then the team can hit a "free" homer if any player hits it out before the DHH comes up again and it won't count against the team total.  They used a very lively ball a 44 core 375 compression ball that stayed hard in the heat and could definitely be a good ball for Viera in the future.  The tournament was played at Mid America Ballyard in Cincinnati, Ohio and it was hot and humid all day Saturday on the 300 foot fields.

In the 1st round which was played at 10:15 AM Premier/TG/HDLNS/ (OH-A) the favorite to repeat as champs in the event jumped out to a 15-2 lead on Tailgaters/B&E (PA-A).  Tailgaters was a mix of Conference 'A' players with 3 higher level players on the team – David Kessler from Precision, Bill Pinkham the pitcher from Bay Area Legends, and Clayton Farrar from Newbreed.  Tailgaters got some good defense from middle infielder John Sullivan and outfielder John Zorich to keep the game from being a run rule.  Tailgaters slowly crawled back into the game and held Premier to no runs in the top of the 7th down 2.  In the bottom of the 7th they got leadoff singles from Kessler and Farrar to bring the winning run to the plate.  But a double play and a ground out to third ended the game with a Premier victory.  In other 1st round action Headlines/Titan/CSB (OH-A) jumped out to a huge lead against SVC/Miken/Worth/Grizzy Athletics (OH-B) and then held them off the rest of the way in a 32-21 victory.  T&W/Cornerstone/Pauer/Miken (OH-A) run ruled the 'E' team Loaded/Playmakers 30-5.  And GMS/Category5 (MI-B) upset Maroadi Transfer/Worth/Miken (PA-A) 40-24 when Maroadis just couldn't keep pace offensively.

In 2nd round action Headlines blew an 11 run in 7th inning and lost to GMS on a Daniel Steingraber pinch hit walk off homer in the bottom of the 8th (23-20).  And Premier trailed T&W by 19 runs even though they were getting great defensive plays from pitcher Tyler Kincaid and middle infielder Jon Roberts.  T&W had some good defense of their own from middleman Bobby Noeth Jr. but Premier slowly took over the game offensively and somehow pulled out a long 38-32 win to advance to the championship.  

The winners bracket finals between Premier and GMS started around 4 PM Saturday.  In the first inning GMS gave up some runs when they got a runner thrown out at the plate on an assist from Premier right fielder Ryan Morrow and Premier returned the favor and got doubled off second base on a flyout to right field when Austyn Dawes got the assist.  By mid-game in another long drawn out battle Premier was up 1 run going into the 5th and got another great diving stop by Jon Roberts to hold down GMS.  But GMS being a veteran team grabbed the lead in the 5th on a majestic homer by veteran pitcher Mike Evans after an intentional walk and Premier grabbed it back on a 3 run homer by Adam Kaminski and the game was tied going into the bottom of the 6th.  Premier though would take a lead into the bottom of the 7th and held onto a 24-22 win.

In the losers bracket SVC beat Maroadi Transfer on a walk off sacrifice fly 27-26 and SVC battled back from a 17 run deficit against T&W to close to within 29-26 only to lose 31-27.  Meanwhile Tailgaters made short work of Loaded/Playmakers 24-4 and then dispatched Headlines 28-10 and it looked like Tailgaters might make a run at the tournament from the losers bracket but were stopped cold by a feisty T&W team that beat them 28-19.

The losers bracket finals was the longest game of the tournament as a great play by GMS middle infielder Justin Geiner and some long home runs by Tom Luna and Austyn Dawes kept GMS in the game.  But T&W pitcher Bobby Noeth Jr. stabbed a line drive and led the team to a 32-31 lead in the 5th and an insurmountable 43-31 lead in the 6th and the game ended on a trick pitch strikeout looking by T&W's relief pitcher 43-38.

The championship which was scheduled for 4:30 PM but started after 7:30 PM because of all of the high scoring games.  T&W was playing their 6th game of the day basically all in a row.  Premier started Rocky Staton on the mound and he got a pop out on a nice pitch in the 1st inning, a strikeout looking to end the top of the 1st, and he stabbed a liner to end the top of the 2nd in what was an incredibly low scoring game the entire way.  T&W though actually led 7-3 after 2 innings, 10-3 after 5, and 10-7 after 6 innings.  Then T&W blew open the game in the top of the 7th scoring 7 runs forcing the "if" game 17-8.  The final game was anticlimactic as Premier jumped out to an early lead and cruised to a 39-25 win, their 2nd straight GSL 'A' Championship.  Kaminski had 6 hits and Franklin 3 HR in the game.  Lendenski was 5-5 with 7 RBI in the loss.

Thank you to Dave Maury for running the tournament and to UIC Eric "Slim" Rice and the umpiring crew led by Justin Stout.

T&W leadoff man Mitch Lendenski homers and helps force the "if" game!

Team Breakdown:
8 Teams Overall
4 Nationwide Conference USSSA Teams
5 'A' Teams
2 'B' Teams
1 'E' Teams



GMS pitcher Mike Evans hits a towering homer in the winner's bracket final

Premier defense shut down Tailgaters in their opener on field #4.  

Tailgaters had 2 on and no outs down 2 and failed to score.


The entire tournament was full of great defensive plays.  Check out the video clips!


44 core, 375 Compression is what I was told.

This ball would be great for the big fields in Viera.




Oldscout pollers picked Premier



Video Highlites brought to you by:

2019 GSL 'A' video clips link



Long Bombers of the Week

GMS lefty Tom Luna hit a long one into the trees on field #1 for the Long Bomber of the week.

He will share that with righty Kyler Kirkland for Tailgaters who "hit one over the river"…  🙂



 GSL 'A' World Final Standings and Awards




Team by team notes brought to you by:



1st Place – Premier/TG/HDLNS/

Conf 'A' from OH  3-1 Record

Premier held off Tailgaters when they should have lost in the 1st round, then came from 19 down to beat T&W in the final 4, and survived a power outage in the 1st championship game.  They made their luck with some great defense especially from Staton, Roberts, and Kincaid.    I believe Kaminski and then Franklin were the DHH's.  Morrow set the table, Hightchew has a good motor in center field, and I keep coming back to the great defense up the middle and never give up mentality this team will need at USSSA 'A' Worlds in 2 weeks.

Premier Lineup:
RF Ryan Morrow
1B John Franklin
3B Jackie Corn
C Cory Boothe
2B Adam Kaminski
CF Brady Hightchew
LF Clay Norton
P Rocky Staton/Tyler Kincaid
SS Tony Payne
MI Jon Roberts


Rocky Staton pitched and played middle infield and MI/SS Jon Roberts played great defense!

Roberts was tournament MVP

Staton was co defensive mvp

Tyler Kincaid did some pitching


3B Jackie Corn and SS Tony Payne

OF Clay Norton




2nd Place – T&W/Cornerstone/Pauer/Miken

Conf 'A' from OH  5-2 Record


T&W had a lot of big name players leave them this year – Tony Payne, Bill Pinkham, John Radich to name a few.  But they have a next man up mentality and this is an entertaining team with good talent that found ways to win and lose games this past Saturday.  Recently they added some solid bats in Kevin Ballard from Texas and Josh Wright from Mississippi but this was a gutty performance by the entire team and it shows they can for sure pull some upsets at USSSA 'A' Worlds.

T&W Lineup:
OF Lendenski
Pack dhh
C Ballard
MI/P Noeth Jr
3B Wright
2B Angus
C Ferguson


Veteran hitters Jason Ferguson and Kevin Ballard


Cody Pack and Josh Wright were the DHH

Hendrickson had a nice tournament and was co-defensive mvp


Noeth pitched and played middle and Lendenski have great motors



3rd Place – GMS/Category 5

'B' from MI  2-2 Record


GMS is a veteran 'B' team from Michigan loaded with ex conference players.  Zach Hartle and his endless range at shortstop, Trent Sizemore at 2B, Mikey Evans at pitcher,  Justin Geiner at MI who was the DHH, Daniel Steingraber, Tom Luna, 3B Shannan Green and many others have played conference ball and it showed.  The team outscored Maroadis, beat Headlines, and hung in long games with T&W and Premier.  They are 6-0 vs 'B' teams this year also but do they have the stamina for Florida?  We will see.


Green at 3B, Hartle at SS, and Geiner at MI


Mychal Evans on the mound who pitched for LaFamiglia last year




4th Place – Tailgaters/B & E

'A' from PA  2-2 Record


Tailgaters was a throw together team of conference 'A' and above players.  They had Pinkham pitching, Kirkland catching, Farrar, Sullivan at MI, Roppel at 3B, Zorich and Kessler in the outfield, and Pat Foster at SS, as well as others that have played conference ball.  The team had a tough draw and left runs on the table against Premier after a nice comeback.  Then in the losers bracket their day ended earlier than expected against T&W.  This team actually has 3.5 roster points so apparently legal for 'A'.

Kessler at his home park

Pink and Sully led the defense

Roppel, Foster, and Sullivan

Farrar displayed a lot of power




Tied 5th Place – SVC/Miken/Worth/Grizzy Athletics

Conf 'B' from OH  1-2 Record

SVC who is a conference 'B' team from Ohio actually didn't play that bad.  They came back from a huge deficit to make their game against Headlines go 7 innings.  They won a close 1 run game against Maroadis and then pushed T&W to the limits in their final game.  This team may have set a new record for roster moves this year so I'm not sure who all the players are.  🙂




Tied 5th Place – Headlines/Titan/CSB/Easton

Conf 'A' from OH  1-2 Record

Headlines had a disappointing tournament considering I really thought they had a shot at winning this tournament which was played at a familiar park for them against teams they know well.  This team is a step away from making a splash in 'A' and making the Major…but the step probably isn't going to happen this year.  How is that for "bulletin board material".  USE IT!

Dillman hits a gap






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Some more pictures for you:

Maroadi middle man Doug Ruble made 3 straigh plays at one point vs SVC

Maroadis picked up Tradesmen pitcher David Bare

The 'E' team Loaded only scored 8 runs in 2 games but the 2B below made a great play, check it out in the vid clips

Floating rubber was used

Premier brought Roberts in vs the DHH's trying to get them to not swing for the homer

Justin Stout is not a rookie umpire according to utrip, but he did make the umpiring crew for the Major!


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