USA Softball GOLD National Championships – Championship Day Recap

Aug. 04, 2019, 1:57 a.m. (ET)

PLANO, Texas – Seventy-one teams battled throughout the week for a shot at the 2019 USA Softball GOLD National Championship title. After a total of 245 games played at Heritage Yards, six teams remained in each division for one last day of competition. Recording the final victories of the tournament and raising their trophies in Plano were Tulsa Elite OKC Walde and Excel Elite Williams, as they were crowned the 2019 GOLD National Champions.

In the 16-Under division, Wichita Mustangs defeated Texas Blaze Elite, Texas Glory AR and Louisiana Voodoo in their first three games of the day to land their spot in the Championship match up against the undefeated Tulsa Elite OKC Walde. In a previous winner’s bracket match up on Friday, the Mustangs fell to the Elite in a tough 5-4 loss, sending them to the loser’s bracket to fight their way back for a rematch in the Championship finale.

The consistent bats of the two final teams remained superior as they each recorded a home run in the first inning of the game. Tulsa Elite’s Aaliyah Brown kicked off the home run hitting in the top of the first with a solo shot over the left field fence while Andie Edwards responded for the Mustangs with a two-run home run in the bottom of the first. The back-and-forth offensive rallies were just beginning though as the Mustangs plated another run in the bottom of the second with Tulsa Elite scoring two of their own to tie the game at three in the top of the third. After two quiet innings from both teams, the Mustangs broke the silence in the bottom of the fifth with a two-run home run from Tatum Long her sixth home run of the day – giving the Mustangs a 5-3 lead through five innings. Always quick to respond however, Tulsa Elite strung together four singles in the top of the sixth to score four runs and grab a 7-5 lead. Two additional runs crossed home plate in the top of seventh for the Elite, improving their lead now 9-5 with only three outs remaining in the game. Hannah Harrison ended the game in strike-out fashion for the Tulsa Elite, sending her last three faced batters of the day to the dugout in order to clinch the 16-Under GOLD National Championship title.

“We played one-run or extra innings ball games here all weekend,” said Tulsa Elite OKC Walde Head Coach. “Every game we played was a tough game, we battled and continued to fight back. I’m really proud of this team and feel so honored to have been a part of this tournament, it was one of the best I’ve been in.”

Also placing in the 16-Under division was Glory Adkins Locke and Texas Blaze Elite (5th place), Texas Glory AR (4th place) and Louisiana Voodoo (3rd place).

In the 18-Under division, Texas Blaze Elite – Lindsey claimed their spot in the Championship game after eliminating Texas Challengers, Top Gun Academy and Test Softball in their first three games of the day. The undefeated Excel Elite Williams awaited them in the finale, after giving Texas Blaze Elite – Lindsey their first loss of the tournament in a previous match up on Friday and then moving on to record two more wins to set their spot in the finals.

Excel Elite Williams scored early and often in their final game of the tournament as they plated a quick six runs in the bottom of the first inning while adding at least one run to the board in every inning before reaching a fifth inning 11-1 run rule over Texas Blaze Elite Lindsey. Excel Elite Williams totaled 15 hits in their final game of the tournament, with eight of their nine batters recording one or more. Tristin Court went a perfect 3-3 at the plate with two home runs – giving her a total of four home runs and eight RBIs on the day. Also recording a perfect game at the plate was Eva Myers, going 2-2 with an RBI. Another long ball hitter for Excel Elite, Jalynn Swiney, went 3-4 with a home run – her second of the day.

“To win this tournament means everything,” said Excel Elite Williams Head Coach. “The competition was probably the best competition we’ve seen all summer – from the teams here, the way it was ran, the umpires, it was all just a great experience and I’m glad it ended the way that it did.”

Also earning trophies in the 18-Under division was Texas Challengers and Rock Gold (5th place), Top Gun Academy (4th place) and Test Softball (3rd place).