As we near the start of the 2020 USA Softball GOLD National Championships, we're highlighting some of the teams who will take to the fields in Broken Arrow and Oklahoma City, Okla.
Meet the Tampa Mustangs TJ, a team competing in the 18-Under division. Based out of Florida, Head Coach T.J. Goelz breaks down what you can expect to see from his 2020 roster.
Team: Tampa Mustangs TJ
Home State: Florida
Head Coach: T.J. Goelz
Previous GOLD Nationals Experience: First-time GOLD Nationals Participant
What year was the team founded: “The core of this team started together in 2009. The majority of our current players have been together for five years.”
Returning players from 2019: 12
Noteworthy events and recent tournaments: “PGF Premier 2016 - 3rd Place; PGF Premier 2017 - 5th Place; PGF Premier 2018 - 13th Place; PGF Premier 2019 - 3rd Place; Triple Crown Sparkler Colorado Power Pool 2016- 3rd Place; Triple Crown Sparkler Colorado Power Pool 2017 - 2nd Place; IDT Colorado 2018 - 5th Place; Triple Crown Firecracker Colorado Power Pool 2019 - 2nd Place; World Fastpitch Championship 2015 - 2nd Place; World Fastpitch Championship 2018 - 3rd Place; World Fastpitch Championship 2019 - 3rd Place; World Fastpitch Championship 2020 - 1st Place.”
What are some of the strengths your team will bring this season: “Experience. We have the highest level of championship experienced players in the Nation. Twelve players return from a 2020 summer that saw us finish in the top 5 of ALL four 18U National Events we entered: WFC - 3rd, Colorado - 2nd, TCS Nationals - 5th, PGF Premier - 3rd. We have three high level pitchers who are all different, and a potent lineup that averaged seven runs a game in 2019 and are now averaging 10 a game in 2020. This year's team has an important missing element form the past - outstanding team chemistry and it has led them to a 24-1 summer record while winning two events.”
What is a primary focus your team has as you prepare for the 2020 GOLD National Championship: “Primary focus is to keep all players healthy! We are very excited to be playing in 2020 and have an outstanding group of young ladies who have competed at the National level for five years while finishing in the top 5 in 18 of 22 National Events.”
What are some of the benefits of playing with USA Softball and at GOLD Nationals: “This Gold Nationals has attracted top National teams, like ours, from across the country including California. Those are the teams we want to play, and we are thankful to have the opportunity to play them at the USA Softball GOLD Nationals.”