Teams qualify for world seriesPublished 3:07pm Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Hartselle’s 15U and 8U Black all-star softball teams finished third and fifth, respectively, in the State USSSA Softball Tournament in Birmingham last weekend and qualified to participate in the USSSA World Series in Atlanta, Ga. July 16-21.
Both teams had meetings scheduled Monday night to decide if they would accept the invitation. The15-U team also had the option to play in a 16-U travel team tournament in Orange Beach on the same dates.
The 15U team was eliminated by Morgan County in a semifinal game after going 5-1 in previous contests, two of which were decided under international tiebreaker rules.
“Where we go will be left up to the players and their parents,” said coach Skip Drinkard. “The state association only pays for the top two teams to compete in the world series so we have some fundraising to do no matter where we go.”
“This team played so much better than anybody expected,” Drinkard said. “They really worked hard and proved themselves.”
“We received an invitation to the travel team world series after the state tournament was over,” Drinkard added, “While we’d be at a disadvantage age wise, we’d be able to add some players to the roster.”
Drinkard said Morgan County, which lost to Hartselle earlier in the season, has a solid group of players and should be competitive in the world series.
The 8U Black team finished the state tournament with a 5-2 record after going unbeaten in sub-area and area competitions. It suffered a 6-4 loss to Oak Mountain in the opening round. After winning four straight games in the loser’s bracket, the team was eliminated by Mountain Brook 13-8 on Saturday
Twenty teams competed in the 8U division with the top five receiving an invitation to the world series. However, the state association only finances the trip to Atlanta for the top two teams.
“These girls worked hard and played well,” said coach Jason Preuitt. “We’re proud of them.”
He said parents, players and coaches will meet to discuss the acceptance or rejection of the invitation to participate in the world series.
Hartselle’s 6U and 10-U all-star teams played in the state tournament but neither advanced far enough to reach the world series.
Team members of the 15U team are Alexis Blevins, Emily Clemons, Heather Grimes, Kayla Murphy, Hogan Kennadi, Jasmine Jones, Natalie King, Lauren Speer, Sawyer Swader, LaNinya Wiggins and Aubree Cuit. Coachea are Drinkard, Kenny Hogan, Willie Jones, Heath King and Nick Cuit.
8U Black team members are Alyssa McMinemon, Breanna Sengstacle, Larissa Preuitt, Catherine Keel, Lydia Firpo, Angel Dowdy, Kaelyn Jones, Kierra Stutts, Sage Patrick, Alanna Evans and Brantley Drake. Coaches are Preuitt, Kristy Jones, Shaun Jones and Brad Drake.蚆