Over the past weekend, a collection of local all-star softball teams, all different age groups, made their way to the Central California USA Softball Association Championship (CCUSA) tournament in an attempt to punch their ticket for the Cal State Games tournament later this summer in July. The Cal State Game is one of the premier tournaments for all different levels of softball teams for the age groups of 8U to 12U, the Templeton and Paso Robles teams’ currently occupy level C which is designated for smaller area teams, and brings together the best teams from California, Nevada and Arizona to crown a champion.
An 8U, 10U and 12U team from both Paso Robles and Templeton each entered the tournaments and all six qualified and will have the opportunity to play in San Diego.
The 12U tournament, held in Hanford, was dominated by North County softball teams as Paso Robles and Templeton met in the championship game. The Bearcats team, coached by Dana Sciocchetti, went undefeated through the tournament and exacted a little revenge on the way. The Bearcats went 2-0 in pool play on Saturday, earning themselves the top seed and a bye on Sunday morning, defeating Hanford 12-3 and Kinsburg 9-7. Following their first-round bye, the 12U Bearcats beat Orcutt 15-1, Kingsburg again this time 17-1, and faced off with Templeton in the championship final winning 13-9.
The 12U Eagles went 4-1 in the tournament with their lone loss coming in the championship game against Paso Robles. The Eagles cruised through pool play games and early games on Sunday defeating Kerman, 16-0, then Hanford twice 12-3 and 17-11 and finally, 5 Cities 12-8 in the semifinal. The CCUSA 12U tournament welcomed 14 teams and each of the top six teams qualified for the Cal State Games.
The 10U CCUSA Championship for 10U softball was also held in Hanford with 14 different teams and again featured two North County teams making a deep run and qualifying for San Diego. Both the 10U Bearcats and Eagles only lost one game in the tournament, it just happened to be the same team and eventual champions from Kingsburg. The Bearcats, coached by Tina Kratz, bludgeoned their way to the top overall seed winning 24-0 over Selma and 23-1 over Lemoore. Following the bye, the Bearcats beat Porterville 9-5 before losing to Kingsburg 12-7. While the Bearcats only played four games on the weekend, the Eagles took the long way to the championship and finished the weekend 5-1. The Eagles racked up victories against Central and Visalia on Saturday and Bullard, Selma and Kerman on Sunday before barely falling to Kingsburg 8-7. The top six teams in the tournament qualified for the Cal State Games.
The 8U tournament was held in Santa Maria over the weekend with 11 different teams attending and playing for five spots. Neither of the teams from the North County made it past the quarterfinals but, with the top five qualifying, both will have the opportunity to play in July.