Bedford Ballers Shine in 2nd Annual K-ALZ Softball Tournament

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Image (c) Julie Hollingsworth, 2019 The victorious 10U Bedford Bucs with their coaches

The victorious 10U Bedford Bucs with their coaches – Image (c) Julie Hollingsworth, 2019 all rights reserved – Click to view larger image

Submitted on behalf of Bedford Babe Ruth Softball

The Bucs celebrate after the final out – Image (c) John Mitchell, 2019 all rights reserved – Click to view larger image

Bedford’s newly created 10U summer travel softball team won the K-ALZ tournament in Tewksbury, MA, under challenging weather conditions on July 21. The Bedford Bucs beat the Franklin (MA) Fury, 8–4, during a weekend when heat indexes topped 100 degrees. Overall, the Bucs won five of their six games.

Pitcher Lyla Hollingsworth shut down the Fury during late rallies in the sixth and seventh innings, with 11 strikeouts in seven innings of work; she finished the game on a called strikeout. First baseman Kate Patterson fielded an excellent double play in the sixth, catching a pop fly and then tagging the runner at first, who had left the base. Addison Poulter also made a spectacular catch at 3rd base to save a run.  Becca Sobol had two big hits and two RBI’s, and Lexie Masters and Asalie Brosgol also knocked in runs for the Bucs.

Paul Schuman, Bucs manager, had this to say. “I couldn’t be prouder of this Bedford Bucs team! They overcame a lot of adversity all weekend with extreme heat, two walk-off wins, and a monster comeback in the first of three games on Sunday, after trailing big and losing two players to the heat while playing with only eight girls in the field for several innings. The kids never gave up and showed they are a mentally and physically tough group of young ladies. What I will remember most is that this tournament took all 11 players contributing big plays and truly showing the power of teamwork throughout the entire weekend.”

The 10U team went 2-1 in pool play. They beat the Needham Rockets in a come-from-behind 11-10 walk off win in the quarterfinals and the Cumberland (RI) Comets in a tight 1-0 semifinal game to advance to the championship game.

The 10U Bedford Bucs are Asalie Brosgol, Emma Hollingsworth, Lyla Hollingsworth, Lexie Masters, Kate Patterson, Addie Poulter, Annie Rossi, Ashley Schuman, Isla Sheridan, and Becca Sobol, with Elizabeth Trant and Mia Vitti as call-ups. The head coach is Paul Schuman, assisted by Ben Hollingsworth, Julie Hollingsworth, Kristin Rossi, and Josh Sobol.

Images in the gallery below are all (c) John Mitchell, 2019 all rights reserved – Click to view full size

Bedford also fielded players on the 12U and 14U Tewksbury teams, both of which made the finals in their respective divisions.

The Tewksbury 12U team coached by Rich Iandoli, runners-up at the KALZ tournament. Bedford’s Alyx Rossi (in purple headband) and Laney Mead (in blue headband) play on the team – Image (c) Tami Mead, 2019 all rights reserved – Click to view full size

The 12U team coached by Rich Iandoli, including Bedford’s Alyx Rossi and Laney Mead, went 3-0 in pool play and beat the Threshers (Hanover, MA), FPN Boettger (Wakefield, RI), and their sister team from Tewksbury, coached by Eric Costello, to advance to the finals, where they lost 8-0 to the Valley Storm (Greenfield, MA).

Image (c) John Mitchell, 2019 The Tewksbury U14 team, tournament runners-up; Bedford’s Ellie Mitchell is fifth from left

The 14U team, including BHS rising sophomore Ellie Mitchell, went 3-0 in pool play and beat teams from the New England Storm (Gloucester/Swampscott), Billerica, and Wachusett (Princeton, MA) to advance to the finals against the (Milford) Connecticut Barracudas. They lost 5–2 in a tight game with great defense on both sides. BHS rising freshman Sydney Cox also plays on the Tewksbury 14U team, but was unavailable for the tournament, while JGMS rising seventh-grader Ani Eskandarian played on Tewskbury’s 12U-Costello team.

About the K-ALZ Tournament, and the Weather

Bedford’s Ellie Mitchell scoops up a grounder at short to make the out – Image (c) John Mitchell, 2019 all rights reserved – Click to view full size

The second annual Strikeout Alzheimers’s (or K-ALZ) tournament was held July 19–21 at the Field of Dreams complex in Tewksbury, with 31 teams from five states, plus Quebec, competing in 10U, 12U, and 14U divisions. Each team played three pool play games over Friday and Saturday, and the results from pool play determined the brackets for Sunday’s elimination games. The champion in each division needed to win four games on Sunday, including the final.

Weather was definitely a factor during the weekend. Teams rigged up misting tents and fans to keep players, coaches, umpires, and families cool between innings, and coolers stocked with cold waters, and sports drinks ringed the sidelines of the eight fields in use at the complex. Four of Bedford’s 10U players needed rest or medical attention due to the heat, and the semifinal and final games in each division were delayed so teams and umpires could have more time to cool off before the next game.