Wednesday September 15th, 2021

A look back at the —> 2020 USA Softball Super Nationals tournament report!




2020 USA Super Nationals


Drakes Creek Park


Hendersonville, TN


August 21st


H. Auto's Daniel Cayton hits a two out homer to win the Super Nationals!

SoftballCenters USA Super Nationals picture album link


2020 USA Super Nationals bracket link


2020 USA Super Nationals archived games link


Link to USA Softballs report on the Super Nationals


USA Super Nationals championship game between H. Auto and Monsta



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2020 USA Super Nationals video clips link


2020 USA Super Nationals CONDENSED GAME winners bracket finals link


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The USA Softball Super Nationals Game by Game

The USA Super Nationals was played at the Drakes Creek Park in Hendersonville, Tennessee home in the past of the famous Twitty Classic.  The games started on Friday morning at 9 AM central and there were 5 teams playing a double elimination tournament to crown the champion Friday night.  The games were played with the Dudley Thunder ZN .52/300 ball and all but one of the games was played on Field #4 which was a high school baseball field with an artificial turf infield and 320-345-375-345-325 home run fence dimensions.  The entire tournament was played under the threat of rain which at times was heavy but didn't really delay the tournament.  Here is a game by game recap of the Super Nationals!



Game #1 (Play in Game)

The tournament bracket was created by a random draw and in a 5 team tournament 2 teams get the bad luck of having to play the "play in game".  Bad Draw put together by Mark Katz and Brandon Cashwell drew Drip City a USA Softball 'B' team.  Bad Draw got off to an 8-5 lead and scored in every inning.  They hit 3 homers (Hunt, Brungardt, Dorton) in the bottom  of the first inning in the overcast conditions on the baseball field.  Drip City was still in the game down 10-5 until the bottom of the 5th when Austyn Dawe, Chris Anninos, and Josh Brown all homered and Bad Draw went on to put away Drip city 19-7.  Bad Draw out homered Drip City 11-3 and the teams were allowed to hit 16 home runs per game in the Super.

Bad Draws Chris Anninos homers against Drip City.  Anninos was 4-4 in the game and was All American



Game #2 (Semi Finals)

The semifinals began at 11 AM on two fields.  Field #3 was a dirt and natural grass field with 325 foot fences all the way around and the game featured Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep one of the favorites vs MPT Rentals/Anarchy a new team to the USA Softball upper level.  The ball was flying and the scoring was fast and furious in the early going.  Both teams scored in every inning of the game and Monsta held a 26-18 lead going into the top of the 5th inning when a dropped fly ball by MPT with 2 outs led to a 3 run homer by Donnie Hammonds and a 29-18 Monsta lead.  MPT's Woodrow Darling hit an inside the park homer to close the lead to 24-32 in the bottom of the 6th but Monsta went on to win 39-28 scoring 7 more separation runs in the top of the 7th.  Monsta used all 16 of their home runs out homering MPT 16-9.  Hammonds (6-6, 8 RBI) and lefty Ryan Honeycutt (5-6, 8 RBI) had 3 HR each.

MPT's Filip Washington punches one through the Monsta infield

Monsta's Steve Whaley triples against MPT




Game #3 (Semi Finals)

In the other semifinal played on the baseball field H. Auto jumped out to an 18-2 lead powering their way to a 24-9 win over Bad Draw.  They out homered Bad Draw 11-2 and scored in every inning.  H. Auto's defense and pitching got them out of all jams and they won by the mercy rule to advance to the winner's final.  Yates and Connell hit 2 HR a piece in the game.

Bad Draw's Dale Brungardt hits against H. Auto in the semi finals




Game #6 (Winner's Bracket Finals)

The winner's bracket finals at 4 PM was a good one eventhough it rained.  H. Auto and Monsta each scored in every inning and after a slow first inning H. Auto pulled out to an impressive 32-14 lead going into the 5th.  Monsta never caved in to the mercy rule though and extended the game in the 5th and 6th, batting around in the 5th to close the lead to 32-25 at one point.  But H. Auto closed them out with 5 big runs in the bottom of the 6th and didn't have to bat in the 7th winning by 6.  Both teams used their 16 home runs.  H. Auto's Bubba Mack was an impressive 4 for 4 with 4 HR and 9 RBI and Kyle Pearson added 9 RBI in the big win. 

I have this game in condensed form on my SW48 youtube channel.

H. Auto's Greg Connell

Monsta's Donnie Hammonds was All American and hits a homer here against H. Auto



Loser's Bracket

Game #4 – Filip Washington and Ira Brown celebrate a 17-10 win over Drip City in the 1st round of the loser's bracket.  MPT scored 10 runs in the first and Drip City came back to close the score to 9-14 before being eliminated 17-10.  MPT out homered Drip City 8-2 and were led by Filip Washington who was 4 for 4 and hardly made an out in the tournament.

Ryan Dacko from Drip City homers against MPT



Game #5 – Jared Hunt was voted All American which is the same as All Tournament for Bad Draw.  Bad Draw got off to a 10-0 lead against MPT in the 2nd round of the loser's bracket and scored in every inning.  MPT never gave up however and forced the game to go a full 7 innings by scoring 4 in the 4th and 6 in the 6th to close the lead to 19-15 before exiting the tournament 25-19.  Bad Draw out homered MPT 12-6 as Jared Hunt hit 3 HR and Donald Hollingsworth was 5 for 5.  In the losing effort Jason Branch was 3 for 4 with 3 HR including a grand slam and 9 RBI.



Game #6 (Loser's Bracket Finals)

Monstas Travis Houseman robs a home run.

The loser's final was played as more rain fell.  Neither team looked to take control until Monsta Athletics scored 12 runs in the top of the 3rd.  Bad Draw answered late in the game outscoring Monsta 12-5 down the stretch but came up 2 runs short after 3 homers by Dorton, Dawe, and a pinch hit 2 run homer closed the lead.  Bad Draw out homered Monsta 8-6 becoming the first team to lose in the tournament after out homering their opponent.  





Game # (Championship)

H. Auto 2nd Baseman Kevin Bazat climbs the ladder.

Night time fell as the championship began and a rainy day became a damp evening.  It wasn't pretty but H. Auto powered their way to a 21-9 lead but couldn't finish Monsta when they had a chance to run rule and Monsta who was on their 3rd game in a row, to their credit, climbed back into the game with a 10 run 5th inning.  H. Auto (almost called them Resmondo) put up zeroes in the 4th and 6th and their defense fell apart late in the game as Montsa scored 8 runs to take an unlikely 29-23 lead going into the bottom of the 7th.  Many of the key plays and hits at the end of the game are in the video clips.  H. Auto started the bottom of the 7th with a groundout and it looked like we might have an "if" game.  But Connell, Mack, Riley, and Magnum all homered to cut the lead to 27-29.  Then after a flyout to make it two outs Santana drew a walk, Jon Nelson hit a clutch line drive homer that just cleared the left field fence to tie, and Daniel Cayton who was "locked and loaded" hit a high pitch D E E P into the night for the game winner and H. Auto won their 3rd straight USA Softball Super National title in a row! 



33 members of the H. Auto squad celebrate Cayton's walk off homer!

H. Auto pitcher Travis Clark takes one off the shin guards

Jon Nelson hit a 2 out 2 run homer to tie the Championship game in the bottom of the 7th.





Field #3 is 325 all the way around and was only used for 1 game during the Super

The Women had a tryout for team USA that got rained out part way through.

The Dudley Thunder ZN Hycon .52/300 ball was used and worked well on the baseball field.

The bats were compression tested and stickered



Most everyone had H. Auto to win



Long Bomber of the Week!

Bubba Mack had the longest homer during the day I felt.  He also had a 9 RBI game.



 USA Super Nationals Final Standings and Awards

2020 USA Super Nationals Final Standings:
1st – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton
2nd – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep
3rd – Bad Draw/Rapid Fire/Easton
4th – MPT/Anarchy
5th – Drip City/Monsta


MVP Daniel Cayton – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton


HR Champion (9) Travis Houseman – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep


Batting Champion (.929) Filip Washington – MPT/Anarchy


2020 Men's Super Slow Pitch All-Americans
Greg Connell – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – IF
Bubba Mack – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – IF
Brett Rettenmeier – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep – IF
Matt Fox – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep – IF
Daniel Cayton – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – IF
Jason Branch – MPT/Anarchy – OF
DJ Hollingsworth – Bad Draw/Rapid Fire/Easton – OF
Chris Anninos – Bad Draw/Rapid Fire/Easton – OF
Travis Houseman – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep – OF
Filip Washington – MPT/Anarchy – UTIL
Jared Hunt – Bad Draw/Rapid Fire/Easton – UTIL
Donnie Hammonds – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep – UTIL
Nic Santana – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – UTIL
Jason Magnum – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – UTIL
Travis Clark – H. Auto/Sonnys/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton – P



Team by team notes brought to you by:



1st Place – H.Auto/Sonny's/RDD/Sprizzi/S&S/Easton

3-0 Record

H. Auto's main sponsor is Bob Hortenbach who announced this would be his last year sponsoring the team.  Thank you Bob and congratulations on your 3rd straight title!  Ben Dunn who played sparingly made a huge catch on the center field fence in the winner's bracket finals that helped preserve that win.  The team had 19 players and 14 sponsors/coaches and it took most of them to win it as they were pressed by Monsta at every turn.  I still think this would have been a better event had they split into two teams.  🙂   

Jeff Flood throws on the run

The H. Auto brain trust – Rob Humphrey, Bob Hortenbach, and Brett Helmer

Helmer liked to tell Travis Clark to "pick a car" to hit with a long homer. 





2nd Place – Monsta Athletics/Black Sheep

2-2 Record


Monsta never gave up even after being tired and rained on all day.  They had a spectacular come back in the championship game and was one out away from forcing the "if" game.  Donnie Hammonds led the team in hitting even though he had a bad back and Travis Houseman led the tournament in homers.  And how about the play of Brian Mcbryde in the middle infield, outfield, and finally pitching when Faron Miller went down with a rib injury. 

Matt Fox was All American.  He only plays USA these days.


Brian McBryde pitched after Faron Miller left with a rib injury


3B Whaley, SS Ussery, MI Rettenmeier

Ryan Honeycutt was one of the few non conference players playing in the Super



3rd Place – Bad Draw/Rapid Fire/Easton

2-2 Record


Bad Draw was missing a lot of players from their regular season team.  They picked up a lot of players but probably didn't have enough fire power to truly contend for the title.  A fun team though with at times some good defense.  They were just not going to win with a .532 team batting average. 

Donald Hollingsworth played CF for the Super then flew to Dallas and won the Lonestar Shootout with Classic Glass


1B Brungardt, MI Josh Brown


3B Dawe, SS Mcclanahan, MI Stewart



4th Place – MPT/Anarchy

1-2 Record


MPT also did not hit well enough to win consistently at the Super level (.519).  Although Washington led the tournament in hitting (.900) and Jason Branch and Zach Messer put up some big numbers.  They gave a few of their regulars the weekend off and gave some players a chance like Ira Brown and Rod Armour who got some playing time.  Also Mike Williams who got married was back, congratulations!  All that being said they almost made the finals.  


Pitchers were Dombrowski and Armour


3B John WIlliams, SS Zach Messer, MI Bobby McMinn, 2B JD Genter


Jason Branch and Ira Brown were MPT pickups




5th Place – Drip City/Monsta

0-2 Record

Drip City was never out of either of their games but couldn't put that one inning together where they needed to bat around to win.  5 HR and a .435 team batting average shows that it isn't as easy as the Major players make it look and gives new meaning to the often quoted line that "anyone can hit a homer".  But a good experience for this team nonetheless.

Someone said Alex Hovey the Drip City pitcher is on the USA Futures team





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Some more pictures for you:

The wall from a distance looked like it was padded, but up close it was aluminum or metal

Shirts and Logos has been a long time advertiser on SoftballCenter!

Wegman, Marieo Foster, and Brett Helmer

The live stream had a nice score bug

That play at 2nd was actually a tie

Yates couldn't quite reach this one

Pearson did have the ball and the base

Winner's bracket finals umpires


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