MUNGER — Fastpitch softball fans of all ages packed the town of Munger this past weekend to take in a pair of tournaments.
In the Youth Development Tournament, it was the Munger Fastpitch team coached by Del Benson that took home the hardware. Munger defeated the team sponsored by Vassar Shop Rite and Cook GM Superstore of Vassar by a score of 5-2.
The Munger squad finished the weekend with a flawless 4-0 record.
“Our pitchers, Zach Schabel and Chris Randal of Munger, both had exceptional weekends,” Benson said.
Benson also said that between the four participating teams (Munger Fastpitch, Richville, Gary Thompson Painting in Reese and Shop Rite/Cook GM Superstore in Vassar), Munger played host to 61 kids between the ages of 12 and 18, 15 of which saw time on the mound.
“I’m real excited about the fact that we had that many kids come out to play. We want to get fastpitch softball back to where it used to be,” Benson said. “We know it may never reach that point, but we hope that this tournament is a good start.”
The main focus of the tournament, put on by the Friends of Youth Softball comittee, was to keep fastpitch softball alive for young boys. There has always been a love for fastpitch softball in the Thumb area and Benson said that it showed over the weekend.
Between the Youth Development Tournament and the Munger Volunteers Men’s Invitational Tournament, the games drew in nice crowds.
“We had a real nice showing of fans come out to the fields this weekend,” said Benson. “A lot of parents, grandparents, girlfriends and schoolmates came out to support these young men.”
Up-To-Date Painting won the Men’s Fastpitch tournament put on by the Munger Volunteers. They defeated Tiffany’s Food & Spirits in the championship game by a score of 9-2.
Also taking part in that tournament were Small Town Fastpitch of Benton Harbor and the Munger Volunteers.
In conjunction with the tournament, Friends of Youth Softball held a fund-raising BBQ dinner, grilled up by Mike Reinert and a host of tournament volunteers. Proceeds from the dinner went to support the four youth fastpitch teams with their equipment and uniforms.
“A lot of people came out to Sunday’s dinner, which went well with our doubleheader of championship games,” said Benson. “We had well over 100 people attend.”
Benson and the Friends of Youth Softball Tournament committee also wanted to thank their sponsors for the weekend: Frankenmuth Credit Union, Mike Young of Frankenmuth, Terry Weiss, Grasel Graphics, Reinert & Bender, Kidd Company of Millington, Weiss Equipment, Tiffany’s Food & Spirits, Vassar Bar, Frankenmuth’s Jellystone Park, Vassar Building Center, Rocket Bowling Bar & Grill, Fred Hecht, John’s Bar, Vassar Golf & Country Club, Doug Elbers of Great Lakes Crop Insurance, Jason Equipment Co., Coors Light, Greg Dowis, Joint, Clutch & Gear Service Inc and Bruce Roberts.