2018 Nationwide Conference USSSA
August 31st – September 2nd
Resmondo's Jeremy Yates scores the game winning run in the Winner's bracket finals against Smash It Sports!
The 2018 Nationwide Conference Championships were played on the "Red" quad (325-365-385-365-325) baseball fields at the back of the Space Coast Complex. The fields were all turf and used the Dudley Stadium ZN ball. There were 11 of the top 12 teams in the Nation in the tournament – 3 Major classed teams, and 8 'AA' classed teams. The first three rounds were played on Friday starting at 4 PM. Racks Worth Astros a 'AA' team based out of Indiana beat Newbreed/Steel Sports/Demarini (WA-AA) 25-23, an undermanned All Out (TX-AA) team upset Precision/3rd Street (IL-AA) 33-26 as Matt Schrage was on base 5 out of 5 with 2 home runs, and Xtreme/Miken (MN-AA) knocked off Riot Sports (FL-AA) 33-26 in the "play in" games. Riot Sports was also missing a couple of players.
In the 2nd round the top seeds began as #1 Resmondo/Easton (FL-Major) beat Racks 26-25 after being tied at 21-21 going into the bottom of the 6th. Greg Connell was 4-5 in the win with a double, a triple, and a home run! #2 Dan Smith/Menosse (CA-Major) won their opener 30-14 over Xtreme. #3 Smash It Sports/Thunder (NY-Major) run ruled All Out 38-23. And TDB/FAI/Klutch/Miken (NC-AA) stomped rival Pure Sports/Monsta (SC-AA) 19-5 although Pure Sports didn't have/use any of their pitchers.
When the 2nd round ended the "Final 4" of the winner's bracket began at 8:30 PM as it cooled off a little bit and Resmondo beat TDB 26-15 scoring 7 runs in the 1st inning and Neil Haglund hit 3 home runs in the game. In the other semifinal which ended after 11 PM Smash It Sports grabbed an 18-4 lead and scored 10 more runs in the 6th inning to put away Dan Smith 32-16. Kyle Pearson batting leadoff was 4-6 with 4 home runs and made the big fields look like little league fields a couple of times. Ryan Harvey and Filip Washington also hit 3 home runs each and the team had 2 innings where every batter scored a run!
Most of the loser's bracket and the winner's bracket finals were played on Saturday before breaking in the late afternoon to get ready for the Conference banquet. In the winner's bracket finals Smash It scored 8 runs in the top of the 6th to go up 20-13 but Resmondo in the bottom of the 7th needing 4 to win, scored 3 runs to tie and used a walk off single by Steele Lewis to beat Smash It 23-22 in the bottom of the 7th. In the loser's bracket Precision knocked off Pure Sports 48-33, Racks 19-3, and upset Dan Smith 27-20 to win the top half. In the bottom half Newbreed came from behind to beat Xtreme 19-17 before TDB scored 26 runs in one inning to send Newbreed home 43-20. In the loser's bracket semifinals at 2 pm Saturday afternoon TDB knocked off a tired Precision team 40-25 to make it to Sunday. Saturday evening was the Nationwide Conference Awards banquet held at the stadium where 55 awards were distributed and drinks and food was consumed.
On Sunday morning in the loser's final Smash It beat TDB 21-13 and advanced to the championship against Resmondo. In the final game Resmondo jumped out to a 19-14 lead scoring 13 runs in the bottom of the 2nd inning. Smash It then grabbed a 21-20 lead in the top of the 4th but only scored 1 run in the 5th and none in the 6th. Meanwhile Resmondo scored 3 in the 5th and 3 in the 6th to take a 26-22 lead. In the top of the 7th Smash It got a clutch 3 run homer from Ryan Harvey with two outs and a solo homer from Josh Riley to tie the game at 26-26. But in the bottom of the 7th needing just one run, Resmondo's Neil Haglund drew a walk and pinch hitter Travis Clark hit a game winning gapper with one out for the 27-26 win!
Resmondo's Steele Lewis hits a walk off single to win the winner's final on Saturday
2018 Conference MVP Travis Clark hits a walk off single to win the Conference Championship!
11 Teams Overall
11 Nationwide Conference USSSA Teams
3 Major Teams
8 'AA' Teams
Smash It 2nd basemen Brian McBryde makes a play on the shift from shallow right field
McBryde and Smash It Sports may have been this close to winning the tournament
2018 Conference MVP pitcher Travis Clark took one off the body and recovered to get the runner with an underhand toss from his glove to 1st base.
TDB's Kyle Pearson hits one past Precisions Dan Bean
Precision batting against All Out
The park has two different feels to it. The day time feel and the night time feel. 🙂
Long Bombers of the Week
Smash It Sports Ryan Harvey is the long bomber of the week. He hit one to right center in the heat of the day Sunday that local NASA satellites are still tracking.
Conference Championships Final Standings and Awards
Resmondo pitcher Travis Clark won the prestigious Nationwide Conference Player of the Year!
2018 Nationwide Conference USSSA Awards – 9/1/2018
JOHN GLIDEWELL AWARD 2018 Brett Helmer
AWARD OF MERIT 2018 Strojan Kennison
FRANK WEBB MANAGER OF THE YEAR 2018 Craig Shaw Pure Sports
HOME RUN CHAMPION 2018 Kyle Pearson – 118 Smash It Sports
BATTING AVERAGE – ON BASE 2018 Kyle Pearson – .807 Smash It Sports
DEFENSIVE PLAYER 2018 Ryan McClanahan Pure Sports
OFFENSIVE PLAYER 2018 Davis Bilardello Dan Smith
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER 2018 Travis Clark Resmondo
UMPIRE OF THE YEAR 2018 Rob Mantlo
ROOKIE UMPIRE OF THE YEAR 2018 Philip Taylor
The finalists for Nationwide Conference USSSA Rookie of the Year were:
Infielder Chris Anninos from All Out
Shortstop Daniel Cayton from Classic Glass
Outfielder David Durso from La Famiglia
Pitcher Mike "Nino" Echeverria from Dan Smith
Outfielder Taylor Nichols from Riot Sports
CONFERENCE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR 2018 Mike "Nino" Echeverria Dan Smith
Brett Helmer and Travis Resmondo receive the Conference Championship trophy
Smash It Sports and Miken's Kyle Pearson wins the home run and on base percentage award!
Dan Smith's Davis Bilardello was Outstanding Offensive Player in the Conference
The 2017 Rookie of the Year Jordan Spaulding and the 2018 Rookie of the Year Mike "Nino" Echeverria
Pure Sports Manager Craig Shaw receives the Frank Webb Manager of the Year award from Shirl Webb
Conference Umpire of the Year was Rob Mantlow
Brett Helmer receives the John Glidewell award
1st Place – Resmondo/RDD/H.Auto/All In/Sprizzi/Easton
Conf Major from FL 4-0 Record