USA Softball News Recap Men's Major Fa...

Recap Men's Major Fast Pitch National Championship Day 1

Aug. 22, 2020, 1:05 a.m. (ET)

OKLAHOMA CITY – For the first time in USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex history, the complex welcomed 11 teams from across the country for the 2020 USA Softball Men's Major Fast Pitch National Championship. Participating teams include A-1 Bombers (Bob Piddock), Bar on the Avenue Buzz (Justin Colombo), Bear Bottom Lodge (Codi Pannebecker), Jay Blank Realty (Dave Marchio), Kegel Black Knights (Mike Lewis), NY Gremlins (Gregg Leather), Ray Rays Sports Bar Misfits (Steve Prado), Rio Grande Senators (Dave Parker), Seadogs (Anthony Aresco), Tribal Brothers/TMC (Robbie Tahah), and Wabash Pride (Jordan Eckman).

The A-1 Bombers, Bear Bottom Lodge, NY Gremlins, and Kegel Black Knights each garnered a win to advance in the winner's bracket, while seven teams will battle it out in the loser's bracket on Saturday. 

In the evening 8 p.m. game on INTEGRIS Field, A-1 Bombers held a 3-1 lead over Bar on the Avenue Buzz until the seventh inning when Bar Buzz's Tom Crouch sent one through the left side to plate two and tie the ballgame. After Bombers' Matt Mendibles reached on a leadoff walk to start the bottom of the seventh inning, Derrick Kennedy went yard two outs later to claim the 5-3 win in walk-off fashion. Jerlin Rutt and Jon Gwizdala combined for nine strikeouts and allowed three runs on six hits from the circle.

Grabbing the lead late in their game was Bear Bottom Lodge, who claimed a 2-1 victory over Rio Grande Senators. Held scoreless through the first five innings of play, the Senators batted in a run in the top of the sixth inning thanks to a two-out single from Ernesto Sanchez. Bear Bottom Lodge's Dusten Rutt led off the bottom half of the frame with a double and crossed home after a single from Juan Platner. A single from Rissell pushed the second and winning run across for BBL. Pitchers Julian Fernandez struck out nine batters, while Sammy Villalvazo sat down six in the close game.

Posting a 13-0 shutout over Ray Ray's Sports Bar Misfits was the NY Gremlins. Five Gremlins' players went yard through the four-inning game, including Cam Schiller, Nick Mullins, Erick Ochoa, Jeff Nowaczyk, and Tyler Albert, while Duane Weiler tossed a one-hitter through three innings before Tony Mancha struck out the final three batters in relief.

Claiming a 19-7 four-inning victory in the 8 p.m. game on OGE Energy Field was Kegel Black Knights. Jim Harms (4-for-4) and Mike Lewis (3-for-4) led the Black Knights' in the hit column, with Lewis firing up the offense with a home run in the first inning. Blaine Milheim was also hot at the plate, finishing with a team-high seven RBI.

Ray Ray's Sports Bar Misfits, Bar on the Avenue Buzz and Jay Blank Realty finished the day with a 1-1 record.
 
Admission, which will be sold at the gate of the USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex, is $5 per-day for spectators, with free admission for children five-and-under. Additional information including the tournament schedule and rosters can be found at 
USASoftball.com.