Heavy thunderstorms stymied the opening day of the Georgia Rockers Fastpitch Softball Tournament at Patriots Park last weekend, but the rain didn't dampen the spirits of the 30-plus teams involved in the competition.
"Things went well this year," Rockers coach and tournament director Mike Leverett said. "The championship game was supposed to start at 6, but it was around 11 instead, but overall it was a good event."
Leverett said a combination of Friday's rain and several extra-inning games put the tournament off schedule for Saturday and Sunday's play. However, the crowd stuck around for the three-day double-elimination tournament.
In the 18-under tournament, the Sharpsburg X-Plosion defeated the Suncoast Outlaws in the championship game. In the 16-under competition, the Georgia Heat climbed out of the loser's bracket to beat the Suncoast Outlaws for the championship.
Though none of the local teams made the finals, Columbia County's softball players got valuable playing experience without the cost of travel.
"It's pretty nice. We need to have more of these tournament around here," Harlem Rebels coach Tony McNair said.
"We have to travel to Dublin, Milledgeville, Atlanta - the least we usually go is an hour away. This is nice because you don't have to travel far, and it gives the girls a chance to get ready for high school ball."
The Georgia Dominators and the Martinez-Evans Sting, both local teams, also played in the three-day event.
Leverett, who started the tournament last year as a fundraiser for the Georgia Rockers, said the team probably came out even this year because of complications with concessions profits.
"We were hoping not to go into the hole," Leverett said. "I'm going to do my very best to have (the tournament) at Patriots Park again next year."
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