It was a special weekend for NET Elite Baseball, as we held our Louisville Slugger Classic tournament in our home territory in the Tri-Cities in East Tennessee.
Chris Gordon, the interim baseball coach at ETSU, started the weekend with a speech at the coaches' appreciation dinner, which was attended by more than 120 coaches and players.
Then the action got under way, featuring 85 teams representing 10 different states.
Here are all the results.
The Mississippi Naturals made a tremendous rally in bracket play; after going 0-2 in pool play, the Naturals won four in a row on Saturday and Sunday. Mississippi capped its run by beating East TN Elite 4-2 in the championship game.
Spartans Baseball Hiviz dominated the weekend. After losing their first game of pool play, the Spartans came roaring out of the gate with five straight victories to win the divisional title. Spartans Baseball scored in double digits in two of those contests, then topped the Washington County Express 9-1 in the bracket final.
Falcon Baseball, which finished third, also impressed in the 11U ranks.
Probably the most competitive division of the weekend, there were six games decided by two or fewer runs in bracket play. By the time the dust settled, BlueGrass Xpress walked away with the title, defeating Garnet Crush by a 3-2 margin in the title game. Several teams ran short on pitching on Sunday as the tournament concluded, but it was tough for anyone to match up against the Xpress, who went undefeated in the tournament. Elite Massey and Elite Wells also performed well.
The Crusaders, Falcon Baseball and Southern Athletics easily were the class of this division. Those three teams combined to post an 11-1 record in pool play. The Crusaders claimed the championship, beating the Falcons by a 5-3 margin in the bracket final of a classification full of well-played games.
It was a big weekend for Elite Baseball Club Rice, which posted a 5-1 record en route to the championship. Elite had enough arms to outlast the rest of the competition; in its five wins, Elite Baseball held the opposition to three or fewer runs.
Tri-Star Baseball finished second, dropping a 5-3 result in the bracket final.
There was no catching the TN Twisters, who went a perfect 6-0 on the weekend and scored 17 total runs in bracket play to capture the division title. The Twisters topped Blue Grass Xpress 7-6 in the championship. The Xpress also played sharp baseball; they were also undefeated going into the bracket final, and on the mound they had a southpaw pitcher who regularly was throwing his fastball at 87 mph.
A highly competitive bracket ended with the Blue Grass Xpress winning the division crown, defeating RBI Tri-Cities Royals 4-2 in the championship finals. Talented players were in abundance on the rosters of the two bracket finalists, as well as Wolves Baseball, the Appy Storm and Palmetto Xpress. Several hurlers were throwing at 85-plus mph and there were great offensive skills on display as well.
This weekend we head back to Knoxville for our Wood Bat Simulator, for 14U through 18U teams.
As always, www.netelitebaseball.com is your hub for all things related to our events, our individual showcases, our PointsDriven scouting system, equipment for sale, and much more!