A Softball Legend Dies
Sept. 8, 2021
Bill E. Ruth (1934 – 2021)
It is with a great deal of sadness that Senior Softball USA announces the death of longtime SSUSA President Bill Ruth.
Bill, 87, died this morning after suffering a major stroke a few days ago in his home in Kent, Washington.
Bill has sponsored, managed and played on Senior Softball teams for almost 30 years. In fact, he has either played or managed baseball, softball, basketball and soccer teams for more than 60 years. His teams played at the highest level for many years.
Bill was also President of the Independent Sports Association (ISA), and was a partner in fishing lodges in Alaska, as well as a gold mine near the Yukon. Bill’s main business was in real estate throughout the Northwest and in Cabo San Lucas in Mexico.
Bill was elected into four Hall of Fames: The USSSA (Washington) Hall of Fame, the National Senior Softball Hall of Fame, the SSUSA Hall of Fame, and the ISA Hall of Fame.
Bill became President of Senior Softball USA in 2000 and was a guiding voice behind the growth of SSUSA in both America and around the world.
Bill was a very close friend and partner, a fierce competitor with a wry sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye every time he, his wife Susan and I started a new adventure.
Chief Executive Officer
William E. Ruth was born in Seattle at Providence Hospital to Walter and Zella Ruth. He lived in Riverton until age 7 when his family moved to a small farmhouse off the Benson Highway in Renton (now Kent). Bill graduated from Kent Meridian High School and went on to graduate from Washington State University.
Bill’s business ventures took him to many places. Real estate developments in the Pacific Northwest and Mexico, Fishing lodges in Alaska and Softball adventures throughout the US, Europe and Asia.
Bill is survived by his wife, Susan; brother Jerry A. (Cynthia) Ruth; children Jon (JB) Ruth, Demarest (Bruce) Sherwood, Steven (Debbie) Hehr, Starlene (Michael) Ward, Koranne (Michael) Randow and ‘adopted sons’ Brent Freeman and Jake Call; 8 Grandchildren and 13 Great Grandchildren. Preceded in death by brother John W. Ruth in 2008.
Bill was a fierce competitor with a wry sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye.
2021 held at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on June 3-10.
Champion – Oklahoma Sooners (56-4) Runner Up – Florida State Seminoles (49-13)
On Thursday, the No. 1 Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Florida State Seminoles (49-13-1) by a score of 5-1 to claim the 2021 Women’s College World Series Championship. With the national title now in hand, OU finishes the season with an overall record of 56-4 (.933).
Left-handed ace pitcher Giselle ‘G’ Juarez received the start in the circle for the Sooners on Thursday. In the final game of her prolific collegiate career, the redshirt senior struck out seven ‘Noles while giving up just two hits on 112 total pitches.
With one out in the bottom of the first inning, USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Jocelyn Alo got the party started with a solo shot to left to give Oklahoma an early 1-0 lead.
With one out in the bottom of the second, freshman Jayda Coleman cranked a solo shot of her own to left to extend the Sooners’ lead to 2-0.
With two outs in the top of the third, Moore, Oklahoma native Sydney Sherril tacked a run on the board for Florida State after an infield pop-fly was lost in the sun and allowed a Seminole runner to come home. OU would hold onto a 2-1 lead going into the bottom of the frame.
In the bottom of the third, NFCA Freshman of the Year Tiare Jennings got things started with a single up the middle. Following an FSU pitching change, Alo returned to the plate after crushing a home run earlier in the game and grounded out to third base to allow Jennings to move to second. Next, sophomore Kinzie Hansen was walked by the new pitcher to put two on with one out for the Sooners. Senior Nicole Mendes then grounded out to second, effectively pushing both her teammates into scoring position. Sophomore Mackenzie Donihoo was later walked in her at-bat to load the bases for Coleman.
Still in the third, a wild-pitch pushed across Jennings for an Oklahoma run. With two outs and Coleman still in the box, the star freshman doubled to the left wall to send two more Sooners home. The lead would stand at 5-1 going into the fourth.
Juarez was simply in her bag on Thursday. She led the charge from her command center in the circle to stifle Florida State’s batters. At the end of the day, her pitching sealed the deal and made this title win official for OU.
Earlier this season, when it became apparent that Oklahoma was on track to break numerous Division I records, the only thing that could have possibly kept this squad from making a true case for being the greatest team of all-time was the possibility of not winning a national title. One thing is now for certain — over the last four months, this group of Sooners displayed the greatest show of offense the game has ever seen, and by adding a WCWS Championship to their historic campaign, they’ll forever be in the discussion as being the greatest team to ever play the sport at this level.
Most Outstanding Player – Giselle Juarez, Oklahoma
Batting Leader – Kaley Mudge, Florida State (.500)
RBI Leader – Mackenzie Donihoo, Oklahoma (10)
Home Run Leader – Jocelyn Aho, Oklahoma (4)
ERA Leader – Giselle Juarez, Oklahoma (0.89)
Strikeout Leader – Giselle Juarez, Oklahoma (38)
P – Giselle Juarez, Oklahoma
P – Odicci Alexander, James Madison
P – Montana Fouts – Alabama
P – Kathryn Sandercock – Florida State
2B – Tiare Jennings, Oklahoma
OF – Mackenzie Donihoo, Oklahoma
OF – Kate Gordon, James Madison
OF – Nicole Mendes, Oklahoma
OF – Kaley Mudge, Florida State
UTIL – Jocelyn Aho, Oklahoma
UTIL – Bailey Hemphill, Alabama
James Madison 4, Oklahoma 3
Oklahoma State 3, Georgia 2
Alabama 5 Arizona
UCLA 4, Florida State 0
James Madison 2, Oklahoma State 1
Alabama 6 UCLA 0
Oklahoma 8 Georgia 0 – Georgia eliminated
Florida State 4 Arizona 3 – Arizona eliminated
Oklahoma 10 UCLA 3 – UCLA eliminated
Florida State 4 Oklahoma State 2 – Oklahoma State eliminated
Oklahoma 6 James Madison 3
Florida State 2 Alabama 0
Oklahoma 7 James Madison 1 – James Madison eliminated
Florida State 8 Alabama 5 – Alabama eliminated
Florida State 8 Oklahoma 4
Oklahoma 6 Florida State 2
Oklahoma 5 Florida State 1 – Florida State eliminated
1. Oklahoma Sooners (6-2)
2. Florida State Seminoles (5-3)
3. Alabama Crimson Tide (2-2)
4. James Madison Dukes (2-2)
5t. Oklahoma State Cowgirls (1-2)
5t. UCLA Bruins (1-2)
7t. Georgia Bulldogs (0-2)
7t. Arizona Wildcats (0-2)
Oklahoma 19 Morgan State 0 (5 innings)
Wichita State 9 Texas A&M 7
Oklahoma 7 Wichita State 5
Texas A&M 9 Morgan State 3 – Morgan State eliminated
Wichita State 9 Texas A&M 6 – Texas A&M eliminated
Oklahoma 24 Wichita State 7 – Wichita State eliminated
Oklahoma qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Washington 3 Portland State 0
Michigan 2 Seattle 0
Michigan 2 Washington 1
Seattle 6 Portland State 5 – Portland State eliminated
Washington 8 Seattle (5 innings) – Seattle eliminated
Washington 2 Michigan 0
Washington 10 Michigan 5 – Michigan eliminated
Washington qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-1.
Missouri 8 UIC 0
Northern Iowa 8 Iowa State 0
Missouri 4 Northern Iowa 0
Iowa State 4 UIC 0 – UIC eliminated
Iowa State 4 Northern Iowa 3 – Northern Iowa eliminated
Missouri 5 Iowa State 0 – Iowa State eliminated
Missouri qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Tennessee 8 Eastern Kentucky 1
James Madison 4 Liberty 3 (10 innings)
James Madison 3 Tennessee 1
Liberty 5 Eastern Kentucky 1 – Eastern Kentucky eliminated
Liberty 3 Tennessee 1 – Tennessee eliminated
James Madison 8 Liberty 5 – Liberty eliminated
James Madison qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Oklahoma State 10 Campbell 0
Mississippi State 3 Boston University 1
Oklahoma State 9 Mississippi State 3
Campbell 7 Boston University 1 – Boston University eliminated
Mississippi State 12 Campbell 0 (5 innings) – Campbell eliminated
Oklahoma State 10 Mississippi State (5 innings) – Mississippi State eliminated
Oklahoma State qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Texas 12 Saint Francis (PA) 0 (5 innings)
Texas State 5 Oregon 1
Texas 6 Texas State 0
Oregon 7 Saint Francis (PA) 0 – Saint Francis (PA) eliminated
Oregon 2 Texas State 0 – Texas State eliminated
Oregon 3 Texas 2 (8 innings)
Texas 1 Oregon 0 – Oregon eliminated
Texas qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-1.
Florida 1 South Florida 0
South Alabama 2 Baylor 0
Florida 10 South Alabama 0
South Florida 5 Baylor 0 – Baylor eliminated
South Florida 1 South Alabama 0 – South Alabama eliminated
Florida 8 South Florida 0 – South Florida eliminated
Florida qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Duke 2 UNC Greensboro 0
Georgia 11 Western Kentucky 3 (6 innings)
Georgia 1 Duke 0
Western Kentucky 8 UNC Greensboro 4 – UNC Greensboro eliminated
Duke 4 Western Kentucky 0 (12 innings) – Western Kentucky eliminated
Georgia 10 Duke 9 – Duke eliminated
Georgia qualifies for the Super Regional, 3-0.
Alabama 9 Alabama State 0 (6 innings)
Clemson 8 Troy 0 (5 innings)
Alabama 6 Clemson 0
Troy 8 Alabama State 0 (6 innings) – Alabama State eliminated
USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year – Jocelyn Aho, Oklahoma (.475 AVG, 34 HR, 89 RBI, 3 SB)
NFCA Player of the Year – Rachel Garcia, UCLA
NFCA National Pitcher of the Year – Montana Fouts, Alabama (27-4, 349 K, 1.61 ERA)
Softball America Pitcher of the Year – Odicci Alexander, James Madison (18-3, 204 K, 1.71 ERA)
NFCA National Freshman of the Year – Tiare Jennings, Oklahoma
Softball America Freshman of the Year – Tiare Jennings, Oklahoma
NFCA Cather of the Year – Dejah Mulipola, Arizona
NFCA Golden Shoe Award – Jenna Wildeman, Central Arkansas
ALL-AMERICAN FIRST TEAM
P – Megan Faraimo, UCLA
P – Montana Fouts, Alabama
P – Keely Rochard, Virginia Tech
C – Dejah Mulipola, Arizona
1B – Alysen Febrey, Oklahoma State
2B – Tiare Jennings, Oklahoma
3B – Charla Echols, Florida
SS – Sami Williams, Iowa State
OF – Jocelyn Alo, Oklahoma
OF – Jayda Coleman, Oklahoma
OF – Maya Brady, UCLA
UTIL – Rachel Garcia, UCLA
UTIL – Aaliyah Jordan, UCLA
AL – Bailey Hemphill, Alabama
AL – Mary Haff, Arkansas
AL – Braxton Burnside, Arkansas
AL – Gabbie Plain, Washington
AL – Kayla Kowalik, Kentucky
ALL-AMERICAN SECOND TEAM
P – Ashley Rogers, Tennessee
P – Carrie Eberle, Oklahoma State
P – Kathryn Sandercock, Florida State
C – Kinzie Hansen, Oklahoma
1B – Danielle Gibson, Arkansas
2B – Baylee Klingler, Washington
3B – Jenna Cone, George Washington
SS – Grace Lyons, Oklahoma
OF – Ailiyah Andrews, LSU
OF – Kiki Milloy, Tennessee
OF – Abby Sweet, Notre Dame
UTIL – Valerie Cagle, Clemson
UTIL – Deja Davis, Duke
AL – Odicci Alexander, James Madison
AL – Sis Bates, Washington
AL – Alex Storako, Michigan
AL – Taylor Pleasants, LSU
AL – Maddi Hackbarth, Arizona State
ALL-AMERICAN THIRD TEAM
P – Brooke Yanez, Oregon
P – Elizabeth Hightower, Florida
P – Alyssa Denham, Arizona
C – Haley Lee, Texas A&M
1B – Kaylee Tow, Alabama
2B – Hannah Adams, Florida
3B – Hannah Becerra, Cal State Fullerton
SS – Briana Perez, UCLA
OF – Brooke Wilmes, Missouri
OF – Haley Cruse, Oregon
OF – Janelle Meono, Arizona
UTIL – Paige Rauch, Villanova
UTIL – Hayley Busby, Oklahoma State
AL – Georgina Corrick, USF
AL – Mackenzie Boesel, South Carolina
AL – Jessie Harper, Arizona
AL – Sydney McKinney, Wichita State
AL – Janae Jefferson, Texas
Batting Champion – Amber Parrish – Team 24/Proton (.750)
Competition in the Women’s Open division was fierce today as the field of 14 teams narrowed to four. Seven games were won in run-rule fashion while three contests were won by only one run. The women racked up a total of 716 hits in 23 games played and will look to tally more as the competition continues.
Advancing to the Women’s Open Championship Game tomorrow at 10:30 a.m. CT is MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics who won three consecutive games in the winner’s bracket after having a bye in the first round of play. Each game MPT Rentals played was close-scoring, but they always found a way to come out on top. MPT Rentals took down Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton 13-10 and pulled-out a 15-12 victory over Low Bobs/Shirts & Logos. MPT Rentals met La Famiglia/Easton/Riot in the winner’s bracket finale to cap out the night. La Famiglia started the tournament hot, shutting out Classic Glass/Easton/Dirty Sports 11-0 in their first game on Saturday morning and posting back-to-back run-rule wins against Smash It Sports Traders reloaded and BSC Dynasty to make it to the winner’s bracket finale.
In the final game of the night, MPT Rentals fought hard against La Famiglia throughout the entire contest. MPT Rentals scored the first runs of the game in the second inning via a walk, triple, and sacrifice fly to make it 2-0, MPT Rentals. La Famiglia answered back in the third and took the lead, holding it through the fifth inning. The score continued to pinball in the sixth when MPT Rentals strung five singles together to get ahead 5-3. Once again, La Famigila accepted the challenge and scored three more runs in the bottom of the frame. Falling behind 6-5 going into the seventh inning, well-placed hits allowed MPT Rentals to plate four runs, pulling ahead for good and eventually claiming the 9-8 victory to send them to the Championship.
Three teams remain in the loser’s bracket with Low Bobs/Shirts & Logos facing off against Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton at 8 a.m. CT in the win-or-go-home game. The winner will advance to the semi-final contest against La Famiglia at 9:15 a.m. CT. Smash It Sports lost their second game of the tournament but made an impressive run through the loser’s bracket by winning three consecutive games. Low Bobs was sent to the loser’s bracket after falling to MPT Rentals in a close, 15-12 game but bounced back with a 7-3 victory over Team 24/Proton to advance in the bracket and continue the fight for a title on Championship Sunday.
The loser’s bracket kicked off the Women’s Open division on Championship Sunday as Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton took down Low Bobs/Shirts & Logos 12-5. Smash It Sports struck first when Fiana Finau drove a three-run shot over the center field fence in the third at-bat of the game. The damage continued with three singles, a double, and a sac fly to extend the Smash It Sports lead to 5-0. Low Bobs put up a run in the bottom of the frame but was unable to catch up as Smash It Sports continued tacking on runs throughout the game. Mandy Hollman homered in the sixth to score Smash It Sports’ final run of the contest, putting them up 12-4 after the sixth. Low Bobs attempted a rally in their final three outs by scoring on a sacrifice fly, but a ground out would end the game and give Smash It Sports the victory, sending them to the semi-final contest.
Smash It Sports continued their hot streak by scoring two runs in the bottom of the first inning against La Famiglia/Easton/Riot. The lowest scoring game of the tournament, Smash It Sports was able to pull-off the 8-2 win and advance to the Championship game. Megan Baltzell led Smash It Sports by going 2-3 with two home runs and three RBI in the contest.
In their third and final game of the day, Smash It Sports faced-off against MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics to battle it out for the Championship title. MPT Rentals wasted no time in getting on the board, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning. Defense was also on point for MPT Rentals as they retired Smash It Sports in order in each of the first three innings. MPT Rentals kept their foot on the gas while Megan Higginbotham went 3-4 with three RBI to lead MPT Rentals to a 14-1 (five innings) victory as they claimed the 2021 Women’s Open Slow Pitch National Championship title.
Bernadette Tenuto led MPT Rentals with 11 hits and a .786 batting average throughout the weekend. Haylee Leatherwood and Higginbotham each tallied eight hits in the tournament with Higginbotham scoring a team-leading eight runs.
2021 FIRST TEAM ALL AMERICANS
Megan Baltzell – Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton
Kacey Britt – La Famiglia/Easton/Riot
Bethany Brown – Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton
Fiana Finau – Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton
Megan Higginbotham – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
Mandy Hollman – Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton
Kaylnn Johnson – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
Heather Leatherfield – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
Desiree Mejia – La Famiglia/Easton/Riot
Amber Parrish – Team 24/Proton
Robin Pettit – BSC Dynasty
Bree Setree – Low Bobs/Shirts&Logos
Bernadette Tenuto – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
Loren Thomas – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
Kylie Wolfe – MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics
1. MPT Rentals/AOB/Juno Athletics, Woodbridge, NJ (4-0)
2. Smash It Sports/Derby Girls/Easton, Kent, WA (6-2)
3. La Famiglia/Easton/Riot, Bethel Park, PA (3-2)
4. Low Bobs/Shirts & Logos, Lexington, KY (3-2)
5t. BSC Dynasty, Tallahassee, FL (2-2)
5t. Team 24/Proton, Apollo Beach, FL (3-2)
7t. Xtreme/Greenspace, Lino Lakes, MN (2-2)
7t. Lady SNI/LazyLlama/DeMarini/Slugger, Lake Mary, FL (2-2)
9t. Lady Mojo/S2SN, Louisa, VA (1-2)
9t. Smash It Sports/Traders Reloaded, Collierville, TN (0-2)
9t. Classic Glass/Easton/Dirty Sports, Shoreline, WA (0-2)
9t. On Point, Grimes, IA (0-2)
13t. Real Talk Softball/Riot, Wichita, KS (0-2)
13t. Dbbrand/SNC/Team199, York, PA (0-2)
HR Champion – Jeremy Yates, Daddy Rocks/Ductech/Hoffman/S&S (10)
Batting Champion – Filip Washington, Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics (0.857)
The competition was an absolute slugfest with 164 home runs leaving the park. Teams tallied a grand total of 485 runs in 12 games with just under half the winners scoring over 30 runs in their victories. Five games were decided via run-rule and another five were won in walk-off fashion. Three teams remain in the men’s division and will duke it out on Sunday morning in hopes of claiming the Championship trophy.
Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals sealed their spot in the title game after going undefeated in today’s action. Bats were hot all day for Juno Athletics as they scored 91 runs on 97 hits. In their first game, Juno Athletics edged out Chanticlear Pizza_Monsta in a tight 25-24 contest before posting a 34-19 rule-rule victory over Apex. The winner’s bracket finale was a solid matchup between Juno Athletics and Thunder/Chosen/All American Restoration that resulted in a come-from-behind walk-off win for Juno Athletics after two home runs tied and won the game in the seventh. Juno Athletics will compete for the title in the Championship Game on Sunday at 10 a.m. CT.
After falling to Juno Athletics 32-28, the Thunder was sent to the loser’s bracket where they will face off against Daddy Rocks/Hoffman/Ductech/S&S in the semi-final contest Sunday morning at 8:30 a.m CT. The Thunder had a solid showing in their first two outings, defeating Daddy Rocks 22-18 and Comotose/S2N/Monsta 8-7. Daddy Rocks’ loss to Juno Athletics in their first game of the day fueled the fire for them to blast through the loser’s bracket, pulling out three straight wins including two run-rule victories.
Daddy Rocks/Hoffman/Dutech/S&S and Thunder/Chosen/All American Restoration met for the second time in the tournament as they faced-off in the semi-final contest at 8 a.m. on Sunday. Both teams got on the board in the first inning, but after Thunder’s nine-spot in the second they left Daddy Rocks in the dust. Another big inning in the third extended Thunder’s lead before they sealed the 25-3 run-rule victory after four innings. Travis Clark, Brian McBryde, and Kyle Pearson each hit two home runs apiece with Pearson leading the Thunder with six RBI.
The Thunder entered the Championship game against Juno Athletics needing to win in order to force an “if-necessary” game and complete their quest for the title. This proved to be no issue for the Thunder as they got to work and scored a quick four runs in the first inning. Sending seven home runs out of the park including a grand slam from Bradley Jones, the Thunder racked up a total of 19 hits to take down Juno Athletics 18-11 and force another game.
In the final game of the 2021 USA Softball Men’s Class AA Slow Pitch National Championship, both teams came out swinging and put up 13 combined runs in the first inning of play. Juno Athletics cooled off in the second, but the Thunder stayed hot and pushed 12 runners across the plate, putting them ahead 21-6. Nineteen home runs were hit in the title game as each team had 24 hits apiece. The Thunder had multiple chances to walk-off the game via run-rule but were unable to take advantage of the opportunities. Juno Athletics threatened a comeback in the top of the seventh, but they fell short as the Thunder walked away with the 28-20 victory and the National Championship title.
Pearson led the Thunder with a .696 batting average and 10 home runs with 22 RBI over the course of the tournament. Pearson finished third on the team in hits with 16 while Austyn Dawe accounted for 17 hits and Jones led the Thunder with 18.
2021 FIRST TEAM ALL AMERICANS
Kevin Bazat (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
Austyn Dawe (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
John Dombrowski (Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals)
Brandon Hooks (Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics)
Tristan Johnston (Daddy Rocks/Ductech/Hoffman/S&S)
Bradley Jones (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
Erik Kanaby (Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals)
Brian McBryde (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
Ryan McClanahan (Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals)
Kyle Pearson (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
Josh Riley (Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S)
Jeff Roxby (Daddy Rocks/Ductech/Hoffman/S&S)
Filip Washington (Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics)
Johnathon Williams (Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals)
Jeremy Yates (Daddy Rocks/Ductech/Hoffman/S&S)
1. Thunder/Chosen/All American, Gladewater, TX (5-1)
2. Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals, Toms River, NY (3-2)
3. Daddy Rocks/Hoffman/Ductech/S&S, South St. Paul, MN (3-2)
4. Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics, Spring, TX (2-2)
5t. Comatose/S2N/Monsta, Beloit, WI (1-2)
5t. Apex, Ankeny, IA (1-2)
7t. Team No Limits, Gainesville, VA (0-2)
7t. Chanticlear Pizza/Monsta, Becker, MN (0-2)
HR Champion – Jason Matusik – Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics
Batting Champion – Bradley Jones – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
THUNDER/SIS/CHOSEN/ALL AMERICAN/MENOSSE/RDD/S&S CLAIMS FOURTH STRAIGHT MEN’S SUPER SLOW PITCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE
The 2021 USA Softball Men’s Super Slow Pitch National Championship was full of nonstop action as the one-day, double-elimination tournament took place today in Hendersonville, Tenn. Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S won three straight games to defeat Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics 27-12 in the Championship contest to claim their fourth-consecutive USA Softball Men’s Super Slow Pitch National Championship title.
The Thunder made their way to the Championship Game by kicking off the day with a 35-15 run-rule victory (five innings) over Comatose/S2N/Monsta. Josh Riley led the team with four home runs and was one of eight Thunder players with a long ball in the contest. Riley also racked up eight RBIs for the Thunder while Jeremy Yates went five-for-five at the plate. In their second game of the day, the Thunder took down Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics thanks to a 13-run sixth inning. Down 17-14 in the bottom of the frame, back-to-back home runs from Riley and Kyle Pearson sparked the rally for the Thunder. A single, a double, and four more home runs in the inning would put the Thunder ahead and lead them to a 26-20 victory and a spot in the title game.
Monsta Black Sheep played a total of four games today and started out strong with a 18-16 win against Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals. They then took on the Thunder in the semi-final game and led through five innings of play but fell 26-20 after the Thunder’s explosive sixth inning. Sent to the loser’s bracket, Monsta Black Sheep took on Juno Athletics for the second time in a win-or-go-home matchup. Jason Matusik got things going for Monsta Black Sheep in the first inning with a solo shot to left field. Once on the board, Monsta Black Sheep didn’t look back, scoring in five out of six innings with home runs off the bats of seven different players, propelling Monsta Black Sheep to a 13-9 victory to send them to the Championship Game.
The final game of the tournament reunited the Thunder and Monsta Black Sheep for the second time today. The Championship contest was an impressive matchup with runs crossing the plate for both teams in all but one inning. Once again, Matusik put Monsta Black Sheep on top with a solo home run to start off the game. The lead didn’t last long, however, as the Thunder responded with a sacrifice fly and a home run of their own to make the score 3-1, Thunder, after one inning of play.
The Thunder continued to tack on runs, extending their lead to 8-1 in the second inning with a handful of base hits and a home run from Gregg Connell. Monsta Black Sheep answered back with a sac fly and two more long balls from Filip Washington and Matusik to close the gap to 8-5, though they would not be able to stop the Thunder offense who plated seven more runs in the bottom of the frame.
With the score 15-5 going into the fourth inning, Monsta Black Sheep refused to go down without a fight. The team was able to scratch a couple of runs and hold the Thunder to only two runs over the next two innings. Home runs from Brian McBryde and Matusik in the sixth cut the Thunder’s lead to 17-12. With bats still on fire, the Thunder took back control in the bottom of the sixth to close out the game. Back-to-back home runs from Bradley Jones and Yates sparked the rally that led to a 10-run sixth inning capped with a walk-off home run from Yates to seal the win. The Thunder walked away with a 27-12 run-rule victory (six innings) over Monsta Black Sheep, winning their fourth straight USA Softball Men’s Super Slow Pitch National Championship title.
Riley put together an impressive tournament performance which earned him the MVP title, while Jones led with a .867 batting average and Matusik tallied the most home runs with nine on the day.
2021 FIRST TEAM ALL AMERICANS
P – Travis Clark – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
IF – Kevin Bazat – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
IF – Orlando Castillo – Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals
IF – Greg Connell – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
IF – Bradley Jones – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
IF – Jason Matusik – Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics
OF – Tyler Marshburn – Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals
OF – Josh Riley – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
OF – Nic Santana – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
OF – Jeremy Yates – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
UTIL – Travis Houseman – Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics
UTIL – Ryan Honeycutt – Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics
UTIL – Brian McBryde – Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics
UTIL – Phil Matte – Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals
UTIL – Brian Wegman – Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S
1. Thunder/SIS/Chosen/All American/Menosse/RDD/S&S, Cicero, NY (3-0)
2. Monsta Black Sheep/Texas5/Monsta Athletics, Spring, TX (2-2)
3. Juno Athletics/MPT Rentals, Toms River, NY (2-2)
4. Comatose/S2N/Monsta, Beloit, WI (1-2)
5. Apex, Ankeny, IA (0-2)
STAGECOACH/CREST EXTERIORS EARNS THE 2021 MEN’S CLASS C SLOW PITCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE
The 2021 USA Softball Men’s Class C Slow Pitch National Championship came to a close today with Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors claiming the Championship title after forcing an “if-necessary” game to defeat Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation 18-10 in the final contest. Stagecoach finished the tournament with an 8-1 record, their only loss coming from a winner’s bracket matchup against Northwoods Elite. Sent to the loser’s bracket on Day Two, Stagecoach clinched five-straight crucial victories to earn them the trophy and the Championship title.
In the first game of the day, the loser’s bracket semi-final saw a rematch as Stagecoach took down Northwoods Elite in a close-fought 11-8 battle. Stagecoach came out of the gate strong with a four-run first inning and three home runs from Daniel Sargent, Micah Loegering, and Zach Prins. Plating five more runs in the top of the third, Stagecoach extended their lead to 9-0 before Northwoods scratched two in the bottom of the frame to make it 9-2. Stagecoach pushed two more runs across in the fourth thanks to a pair of singles and a double, making it an 11-2 ballgame. Northwoods began to chip away at the Stagecoach lead in the bottom of the frame with a sacrifice fly from Dru Mickelson to add one more run to the board before scoring five more in the fifth inning to close the gap, 11-8. Despite the rally, Northwoods was unable to string things together in the final two innings, ending their tournament run and allowing Stagecoach to walk away with the 11-8 win to send them to the title game.
The offense continued to dominate for Stagecoach as they rolled into the Championship Game against Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation. Six hits in the first inning pushed five runs across the plate for Stagecoach, but Trinity answered back with three home runs in the bottom of the frame to score four, making it 5-4 Stagecoach after one inning of play. A big inning in the second put up eight more runs for Trinity allowing them to pull ahead 12-5 going into the third inning. Losing the lead lit the spark for Stagecoach as their offense exploded for 26 runs in the next four innings including a 12-run fourth. Trinity put up four runs in the fifth inning but couldn’t make a comeback as Stagecoach took the 31-16 (six innings) victory to force an “if-necessary” game. Out of their 33 total hits, Stagecoach racked up 10 doubles in the contest with James Kauffmann leading the way with three.
In the winner-take-all matchup with the Championship title on the line, the competition was fierce as neither team gave up the fight. Stagecoach struck first with a five-run first inning after two RBI singles from Sargent and Loegering and a three-run shot from Prins put them on the board. Both offenses were quiet throughout the next two innings as the defense controlled the game. Trinity broke the silence in top of the fourth after Robert Aquilino put a two-run home run over the left field fence. The team used that momentum to extend the rally, scoring seven more runs in the top of the frame to take the lead, 9-5. Not going down without a fight was Stagecoach, finding ways to get on base and manufacturing three runs to bring them within one of Trinity. Aquilino tacked on another run for Trinity in the top of the fifth for his second home run of the game to put his team up 10-8, but it wouldn’t last long as Stagecoach responded with a three-run home run from Kauffmann to steal back the lead, 11-10. Stagecoach finished out the game strong, scoring 10 runs in the last two innings and sealing the 18-10 victory with a slick double-play on the infield to clinch the 2021 Men’s Class C Slow Pitch National Championship title.
2021 FIRST TEAM ALL AMERICANS
P – Joseph Apostoli – Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation
IF – Matt Allen – Russell’s Paint & Body
IF – Ryan Balis – Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation
IF – Craig Kolb – Northwoods Elite
IF – Daniel Rothbauer – Northwoods Elite
IF – Casey Tyler – Demars Softball
OF – Kyle Creamer – Shameless/Budweiser
OF – Sean Grosonic – Newbreed/Gorillaz/Royce Geo
OF – Nathan King – Fishers Softball
OF – Micah Loegering – Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors
UTIL – Robert Aquilino – Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation
UTIL – John David – Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors
UTIL – Nicholas Follo – Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation
UTIL – James Kaufmann – Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors
UTIL – Zach Prins – Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors
1. Stagecoach/Crest Exteriors, Shakopee, MN (8-1)
2. Trinity/Big Dawg Sublimation, Branford, CT (5-2)
3. Northwoods Elite, Bloomer, WI (4-2)
4. Newbreed/Gorillaz/Royce Geo, Alton, IL (6-2)
5t. Shameless/Budweiser, Sheffield, IA (3-2)
5t. Russell’s Paint & Body, Oveido, FL (5-2)
7t. Demars Softball, East Haven, CT (3-2)
7t. Fishers Softball, Lancaster, PA (4-2)
9t. The Mill/A3, Sidney, MT (3-2)
9t. MN Maniax/Easton/H Auto, St. Paul, MN (2-2)
9t. VHI/Greater Than, Rochester, MN (2-2)
9t. Thunder/Chosen/Competitive Edge/SOG, Gladewater, TX (3-2)
13t. CIDW/Left Lane Athletics, Ankeny, IA (2-2)
13t. Square One/Spiderz, Waukesha, WI (2-2)
13t. The 10th Inning, Hudson, IA (2-2)
13t. Omaha’s Finest, Omaha, NE (2-2)
17t. Kass & Co., Peosta, IA (2-2)
17t. MVP/Old School, Houston, TX (1-2)
17t. Grassland, Greenwood, WI (1-2)
17t. All Star Plumbing, Oklahoma City, OK (1-2)
17t. Oak Ridge Dental, Lakeville, MN (2-2)
17t. MMB/The Box/Monsta Athletics, West Fargo, ND (1-2)
17t. Twisted Lazers/First Watch/Big House Gym, Kearney, NE (1-2)
17t. C&M Transport/Nager Law/Lakes Heating & AC, Kirtland, OH (1-2)
25t. Silverbacks, Inver Grove Heights, MN (1-2)
25t. Granite Services, Foley, MN (1-2)
25t. Dick Raimann Farms/Garage Force/Excel Homes, Eyota, MN (1-2)
25t. Buzs/Valpo Family Dentistry, Valparaiso, IN (0-2)
25t. SWOK Outlaws, Altus, OK (0-2)
25t. Pioneer Auto, Sioux City, NE (0-2)
25t. 605, Sioux Falls, SD (0-2)
25t. T&C Lawn Care/HH, Cedar Falls, IA (0-2)
33t. Shenanigans/WTP/MII/Dunn Sports, Pleasant Prairie, WI (0-2)
33t. Dirty Vegas/Steel, Grives, TX (0-2)
33t. GetNutz Hawaii, Hayward, CA (0-2)
HR Champion – Erik Lehman – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Batting Champion – Mike Wieland – Apex
CHOSEN/THUNDER CLAIM 2021 MEN’S CLASS B SLOW PITCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP WITH BOUNCE-BACK WIN OVER SILVERBACKS/REVOLUTION ATH/KOVAL
The 2021 USA Softball Men’s Class B Slow Pitch National Championship came to an exciting close today as Chosen/Thunder claimed the Championship title with a bounce-back win over Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval in the Championship “if-necessary” game. After posting an undefeated 5-0 record through bracket play, the Thunder suffered their first loss of the weekend in the Championship contest as the Silverbacks pulled out the 19-17 win to force the “if-necessary” game. The Thunder offense proved superior though with a dominating performance to cap the tournament with a 25-5 (five-innings) Championship victory.
Silverbacks jumped out to an early lead in the Championship contest, driving in four runs in the top of the first before allowing Chosen to cut the lead in half with two runs of their own in the bottom of the frame. The back-and-forth scoring would continue through the remainder of the game, with Chosen evening the score at seven in the bottom of the third before Silverbacks responded with a six-run fourth inning to regain the lead. Chosen would plate five in the bottom of the sixth to give them their first lead of the game, but Silverbacks would once again answer back in the top of the seventh to put them on top, 19-17, with three outs remaining in the game. Kendall Welborn and Josh Kirsten would send base hits through the infield to put runners on for Chosen with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but an infield ground out would seal the win for Silverbacks to force the “if-necessary” game.
After suffering their first loss of the tournament, Thunder bounced back even stronger with the help of a 12-run second inning to propel them to the 25-5 run-rule win to secure the Championship trophy. Thunder wasted no time in getting on the board, scoring two in the top of the first with a two-run home run from Brian Renner. That lead did not hold long though as the Silverbacks answered back in the bottom of the frame with two runs of their own to even the score, 2-2. Refusing to stay down long, the Thunder offense lit a spark in the top of the second with 10 base hits, two home runs and a grand slam putting them on top, 14-2. The Thunder continued dominating through the third and fourth innings, tacking on eight more runs to their lead before rain at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium forced a weather delay in the bottom of the fourth. The delay showed no affect though as the Thunder returned to the field to limit the Silverback offense to just three runs through the fourth and fifth innings while adding three runs of their own to seal the 25-5 Championship victory.
How the teams made it to the finals:
Chosen/Thunder landed in the Championship Game after outscoring their opponents 107-62 in route to a 5-0 undefeated record through bracket play. With the help of a 11-run fourth inning in their first game of the day, the Thunder pushed past Tharaldson to advance to the winner’s bracket finale against Drip City/Midwest Monsta. Another explosive fourth inning, this time scoring eight runs, helped the squad to a narrow 20-16 victory over Drip City to place them in the Men’s Class B Slow Pitch National Championship trophy game.
Thunder offense combined for 134 hits and 30 home runs in their quest to the Championship contest with Kirsten leading the way with 17 hits and three home runs followed by Justin Gregory with 16 hits and four home runs.
Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval cruised through bracket play with three-straight victories before dropping the 19-15 decision to Drip City in their first game of the day to send them to the loser’s bracket. Wasting no time staying down, the Silverbacks quickly bounced back with a 34-17 win over the Dirt Dogs/FHC before posting a 21-1 (four-innings) run-rule victory over The Nation to advance to the semi-finals. With a trip to the Championship contest on the line and a rematch set against Drip City, the Silverbacks offense proved superior with a 30-10 (four-innings) run-rule win to send Drip City home with the third-place trophy.
Battling through seven games to land in the Championship game, Silverbacks totaled 172 hits and 38 home runs while outscoring their opponents 162-72. Galen Miller led the Silverbacks offense with 22 hits and nine home runs while Dennis Yoder and Jeremy Stabach tallied 21 hits. The Silverbacks were one of three teams to score a tournament-high of 30 or more runs in a game.
2021 FIRST TEAM ALL AMERICANS
Dennis Yoder – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Faron Fry – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Robbie Hinkle – Drip City/Midwest Monsta
Brian Renner – Chosen/Thunder
Gregg Downing – Chosen/Thunder
Josh Kirsten – Chosen/Thunder
Tanner Unkle – Drip City/Midwest Monsta
Jeremy Stabach – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Galen Miller – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
James Patterson – The Nation
Taylor Albrecht – The Nation
Alex Hovey – Drip City/Midwest Monsta
Justin Gregory – Chosen/Thunder
Aaron Yoder – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Erik Lehman – Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval
Matthew Brady – Chosen/Thunder
1. Thunder/Chosen, Gladewater, TX (6-1)
2. Silverbacks/Revolution Ath/Koval (7-2)
3. Drip City/Midwest Monsta, Urbandale, IA (3-2)
4. The Nation, Rhome, TX (4-2)
5t. Tharaldson, Fargo, TX (3-2)
5t. Dirt Dogs/FHC, Wallingford, CT (4-2)
7t. Ductech/Monsta Athletics/Budweiser, South St. Paul, MN (3-2)
7t. D&R Miller Concrete, Topeka, IN (3-2)
9t. JEC/P5 Sports/Kevitt, Brooklyn Park, MN (2-2)
9t. Lifetime Diamonds/Legendary Sports, Conroe, TX (1-2)
9t. Reno Cycles & Gear/Lithia Chrysler Jeep of Reno, Sparks, NV (1-2)
9t. L&S Glass, San Jose, CA (1-2)
13t. Apex, Ankeny, IA (1-2)
13t. Vivid/Kilbombers, Frisco, TX (1-2)
13t. Wahl Optical/NZone, Lincoln, NE (1-2)
13t. All American/Dugout 47, Rochester, MN (0-2)
17t. T’s 13, Omaha, NE (0-2)
17t. All Star Plumbing, Oklahoma City, OK (0-2)
17t. Kut4 Sports/OI Livingston/D2E Trailers, Clanton, AL (0-2)
17t. Blackies Softball, Defiance, OH (0-2)
17t. Competitive Edge/Olmito Heat/Adiktiv, League City, TX (0-2)
HR Champion – Sean Greer – Kut4 Sports/Ol Livingston/D2E
Batting Champion – Austyn Dawe – Thunder/Chosen
THUNDER/CHOSEN EARN 2021 MEN’S CLASS A SLOW PITCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE WITH 41-33 WIN OVER KUT4 SPORTS/OL LIVINGSTON/D2E
Thunder/Chosen closed out Labor Day weekend at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex by earning the 2021 USA Softball Men’s Class A Slow Pitch National Championship title with a 41-33 victory over Kut4 Sports/Ol Livingston/D2E. Thunder posted an undefeated 5-0 record en route to the Championship hardware while scoring 30 or more runs in each of their contests with a combined total of 49 home runs on the weekend.
The first game of the day saw a loser’s bracket matchup between Chanticlear Pizza/Monsta and Dirt Dogs/FHS with a trip to the loser’s bracket finale on the line. A dramatic start to Championship Monday, the offensive duel saw 20 balls leave the park with both teams scoring at least one run every inning en route to a 37-36 walk-off win for Chanticlear. Dirt Dogs jumped on top early, taking a four-run lead in the top of first while holding Chanticlear to one. An explosive third inning from both offenses would bust the game open with Chanticlear taking a 26-17 lead after plating 18 runs while allowing 12 runs to score for the Dirt Dogs. The score continued to bounce back-and-forth through the remainder of the game, but a walk-off single from Quinn Cannoy would plate the winning run to advance Chanticlear to the final loser’s bracket contest against Kut4 Sports/Ol Livingston/D2E Trailers.
Dirt Dogscompleted their run with a 5-2 record after dropping their first game of the tournament to Comatose/S2N/Monsta yesterday morning. Fighting their way through the loser’s bracket, the Dirt Dogs won five-straight games to advance to Championship Monday before falling to Chanticlear in the 37-36 contest.
Game two paired Chanticlear Pizza/Monsta and Kut4 Sports/Ol Livingston/D2E Trailers together, with the winner advancing to the Championshipgameagainst the undefeated Thunder/Chosen. The semi-final matchup came down to the final three outswith Kut4 Sports pulling out the 28-25 win with the help of a 10-run second inning and seven-run seventh inning. Trailing Chanticlear 25-21 in the top of the seventh, the Kut4 offense would string together three base hits and two home runs off the bats of Brandon Hooks and Andrew Calhoun to take the final lead of the game before issuing a 1-2-3 inning the bottom of the frame to send Chanticlear home with the third-place trophy.
The Championship contest saw a rematch between Thunder/Chosen and Kut4 Sports/Ol Livingston/D2E after going head-to-head in the winner’s bracket finale last night where Thunder took the 30-24 win. A similar outcome in the winner-take-all game, Thunder proved superior, this time with a 41-33 victory to earn the trophy. The two squads put on a show in the final matchup of the tournament, combining for a total of 74 runs and 20 long balls with Sean Geer (Kut4 Sports) sending three out of the park.
Thunder wasted no time in getting things started, plating seven runs on four homers in the top of the first. Quick to answer back, Kut4 Sports responded with seven runs of their own in the bottom of the inning to even the score, 7-7. The powerful offenses continued to shine for both teams through the second and third innings before Thunder took control in the top of the fourth, combining for 13 hits and three long balls to score 16 runs and put them on top, 34-21. Kut4 Sports cut the lead to six after responding with eight runs in the bottom of the inning, but Thunder tacked on four more in the top of the fifth to cushion their lead with two innings left to play. All the Kut4 Sports offense could muster through the remainder of the game was four runs in the bottom of the fifth after home runs from Josh Cardwell and Blake Green and base hits off the bats of Sean Greer, Kyle Mng, and Justin Tripp cut the Thunder lead, 38-33. Thunder offense wasn’t finished, though, adding three more to the board in the sixth and seventh innings while holding the Kut4 Sports offense scoreless through the final six outs to secure the 41-33 Championship win.
Josh Fyffe and Gregg Downing sent two balls out of the park in the win while Justin Gregory, Joshua Riley, Brian Renner, Kyle Pearson, Amilson Marquez and Austyn Dawe hit one home run apiece.
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