TERRE HAUTE —
Well softball fans, it’s time for yet another season of adult softball in the Wabash Valley.
Local league action has commenced, area tournament action is finally under way, and several travel teams have been competing since late March.
Familiar Vigo and Clay County venues for adult softball continue to be the Terre Haute Church League and the Brazil YMCA softball programs, with more than 60 teams participating in league play. On the other hand, significant changes have taken place with regard to the Terre Haute Parks and Recreation adult softball program.
Starting late in 2011, the Terre Haute Parks and Recreation adult softball program showed new signs of life. Under the direction of Brandy Lanahan, the 2011 Terre Haute Parks and Recreation program has 16 coed teams and 18 men’s teams participating in league play. Coed action takes place on Wednesday and Thursday evenings at the former Y facility at First and Farrington streets, while men’s league play is Tuesdays and Sundays at Spencer Field.
With regard to local adult travel teams, many of the usual suspects are still in pursuit of tournament honors. Crawlworks/All American Auto, the Hitman, Wolfe’s Auto Auction, DeHart Rentals and Outkasts have each participated in several tournaments in the 2011 season. Lacking complete tournament results, I can report that the Wolfe’s Auto Auction coed team has enjoyed some success, while the Outkast men’s team finished third in the Ed Dukes Memorial tournament at Vincennes earlier this year. Additionally, the Crawlworks/All American Auto team earned second-place honors in the Kokomo Dudley Challenge.
One team missing from the list above is the former Budweiser squad. Falling prey to job and family commitments, the Budweiser squad folded in early April before playing a single game. Rumor has it that several of the former Budweiser players are getting ready to re-enter the softball wars in the near future.
On an individual basis, one local player has enjoyed considerable success. Former West Vigo Viking Kevin Kull, while playing with Red’s Boys, earned all-tourney honors in the Border Wars at Owensboro, Ky., and defensive MVP in the Ball diamond classic at Louisville. More recently, Kull moved up to the Sinister squad that plays in the USSSA Conference — the highest level of adult play in the nation. At present, he is hitting .781 for his new team.
Local tournament action has been somewhat abbreviated. R&G Construction traveled from Montgomery to win the Hitmen Invitational, while Rollie’s Pizza from Clay City captured the Shane Chesshir fund-raiser at Brazil.
Several local teams will be venturing to Bedford for this weekend’s All-Nighter Classic, an annual affair that attracts many of southern Indiana’s best teams. The Outkast team is scheduled to begin play at 11 p.m. Friday, while a team including Kull and locals Zack Morgan and Jason Hinton plays at 2 a.m. Saturday.
Two upcoming local tournaments are still taking teams. Interested teams can contact tournament officials for further information.
On Saturday, Hamilton Center and the Terre Haute Parks and Recreation Department are hosting the Together We Can Strike Out Cancer tournament. Interested coed teams can contact tournament organizers at Cwerreme@hamiltoncenter.org or at (812) 231-8330.
On June 18, the Terre Haute Parks and Recreation Department will host a five-team round-robin tournament at Spencer Field. Entry fee is $100 per team with a four-game guarantee. ASA and NSA bats can be used, and you hit your own ball. To enter, contact John Benton at email@example.com or at (812) 877-2566.
See ya at the park.
John Benton can be contacted at (812) 877-2566.