The “Windy City” Classic which is played at the Inwood Sports Complex in Joliet, Illinois began on Friday night with all but 2 of the 35 teams playing. There were no real upsets to speak of on Friday. A very good local ‘B’ team called Precision/Shirts and Logos beat The Scene/Easton 25-10 and PDR, a good local ‘C’ team that usually plays well early on in the Classic, knocked off conference ‘C’ team TG United 25-24.
On Saturday in the third round of the tournament, which was most of the team’s second game, it was all conference teams winning, with a few upsets. P&P 333/Suburban/Larrys/AOS/Combat who upset #5 ranked Shoppe/Team TPS/Elite back at the Hall of Fame Classic to open the season, knocked them off again 32-25 with a big surge early on and then a second surge after Shoppe had tied the game. #25 ranked Line Drive Sportz out of Michigan sent #7 TYJA-Suncoast Reebok to the losers bracket by separating late in the game and winning 24-16. Also #12 R&M Metals jumped out to a huge 19-1 lead in the first on #11 Taylormade and won 28-12.
Then there was the shocking upset. Reds Astros/TPS/Sports Den a new conference ‘B’ team based out of Indianapolis, Indiana knocked off #2 Resmondo-Specialty Tank/Worth 36-31 in a game that Reds led basically the entire game. Resmondo had the hammer in their hands in the 7th, and after two quick outs they did close the gap to 5 before the final out. Reds Astros gave Resmondo a scare last year in Cincinnati so we know they are more than capable, but this was an impressive display of offense by Reds and they had some timely defense with double plays and line drive stabs by the pitcher to complete the win.
The third round completed with #1 Demarini/Dirty, #3 Laservision, #4 Nordkap/Desert Falls, and #10 Team 454 all winning.
In the quarter finals Team 454 struggled but beat P&P 333 23-21, Red’s Astros knocked off Line Drive 25-23, and Nordkap/Desert Falls only batted twice in a 39-9 win over R&M Metals where Nordkap scored 36 runs in the second inning! Also the long awaited rematch between Demarini/Dirty and Laservision took place. Demarini/Dirty came from an early double figure deficit to take an impressive 17-14 lead in the top of the 4th. Then they got a double play on Laservision in the bottom of the 4th to gain the momentum. But in the top of the 5th Dirty put up a zero and in the bottom half of the inning, Laservision scored 22 runs to “mercy rule” a shocked Demarini team that, it seemed, never really got to answer Laservisions big inning. Home team is a huge advantage in the Conference.
In the semi-finals Team 454 separated late in the game to hand Reds Astros a 24-9 loss and Laservision took the wind out of Nordkap/Desert Falls offensive explosions with a 31-22 victory. In the winner’s championship game early on Saturday night Laservision beat Team 454 38-27 like they were supposed to.
By: Dale Weiser
The United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), headquartered in Osceola County, Florida, USSSA is the World’s Largest Multi-sport Athletic Organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com. Also be sure to visit USSSAToday.com for the latest USSSA News!