The Crush from Chicago’s Southside won the 1st tournament of the year in Tempe, Arizona today over Xtinkt from Yuma, AZ. NCAA elite 8 games, LPGA, 10 spring training games may have been on most sports fans radar screens but quite a few folks watched 16″ Softball Hall of Fame pitcher Mickey Balestri lead his new version of Crush in 4 straight wins in beautiful weather. Star of the event was Darren Nepoti who had 4 homeruns at the right moment in 3 games. Short Center Rich Hennessey also contributed mightily. The team won $450 in the progress cash payout 9 team venue.
Dugan LaRose’s Xtinkt (4-2)played solid all day beating defending champ Dirks Moving (after that had lost to Crush in the winner’s bracket lead game) to enter the championship game. Dugan has 3 sons who are on the team…they were the # 2 team in 12″ softball in ’08.
We also learned the 2010 A Nationals will be Yuma.
“We are very proud we put on our 3rd great venue…with two umpires each game, raffles, music, Chicago dogs, fun and laughs, great sportsmanship and awesome defense. The main benefactor were quite a few kids who would get toys that were donated by each team. Arizona is the place to be in March, see ya next year,” stated tourney organizer Al Maag
Note: This event raised $300 and approx 24 toys