The Heat softball program sent two teams to the ASA Heartland World Series tournaments July 28 through 31 in Olathe and Lee’s Summit, Mo.
The Heat softball program sent two teams to the ASA Heartland World Series tournaments July 28 through 31 in Olathe and Lee’s Summit, Mo.The tournaments were for ASA Class C teams. The Heat sent a 14U and 16U team to the tournament.The 16U team finished fifth in the 18U division. The 14U team finished fourth.The 14U team finished 1-3 in pool play, losing to the Adrenaline 5-0, losing to the Greenwood Twisters 11-2, beating the Hot Shots 7-0 and losing to the Olathe Shockerz 8-0.In bracket play, the Heat lost to the Hot Shots 8-2, beat the Lawrence Rockets 11-6, beat the Outlaws 4-1 and lost to the Xtreme 7-5.The 14U team was a new team this season with players from Newton, Halstead and Hesston.“I am so proud of these girls and the way they learned to play the game and learned to come together as a team,” coach Mark Hardtarfer said. “I would like to recognize my assistant coaches Brandy Roberts-Beer and Carl Burns Jr. They helped to keep things in perspective and brought new thoughts and ideas to the team. I would like to give a special thank you to Anthony Gonzalez and Victor Garcia of G2 Athletics for all their support and assistance in teaching, training, and sponsoring the Heat Softball team through their organization.”The 16U team finished 1-3 in pool play, beating the Cobras 2-1, losing to the Lawrence Phenix 12-1, losing to the Dirt Devils 4-2 and losing to the Flamez 10-9.In bracket play, the Heat beat the Panthers 7-2, lost to the Synergy 7-0 and lost to the Lady Yankees 2-1.“This was a challenging season for the team,” coach Victor Garcia said. “We had to replace eight players from last year’s team. We fielded girls from Newton, Hesston, Halstead and Valley Center. Add the challenge of not being able to work with the players, due to Kansas High School Athletic rules, made it difficult to practice as a team. We were not able to practice until two weeks before our first tournament. We challenged the players to work hard and put them in open level tournaments all season. We didn’t play a team in our division until our third tournament, it was a B-C tournament. The girls battled through a lot of losses early in the season, but understood that we were pushing them to be better players by playing up. They continued to challenge all their opponents and earned some tough wins.”The team placed fifth at the USSSA 16U open state tournament and third at the Emporia B-C Summer Slam.“At the ASA World Series we played in the 18 Under division and didn’t have a few starters again,” Garcia said. “We brought up four 14 Under players and asked the girls to rise to the occassion. We ended up with a 5th place finish, which is great since we were playing up an age division and playing with five 14 under starters in the 18 under division. I couldn’t be more proud of the way this team refused to quit. The girls battled through injuries, the heat, and fatigue. We were one loss out from advancing to the medal rounds by losing a very close game. “I am very proud of all the girls that wore a Heat jersey this season. At different times each player faced adversity, whether it would be injuries, slumps, or other issues and they all supported each other and continued to work hard. I would like to thank the assistant coaches, Tom Duvall and Chelsea Estep for all of their help and inspiration. I am very proud of what we accomplished this season and can’t wait until next season.”Team sponsors include Newton Medical Center, Axtell Clinic, Kropf Lumber, Karen’s Kitchen, Heart 2 Heart Vending, Gust Orthodontics, Wray Roofing, El Cerrito Restaurant and Jordan Sports.For the upcoming season, the Heat will sponsor 12U, 14U, 16U and 18U teams. The Heat also will have a college showcase team. While tryouts have concluded, there are some openings for players.For more information, visit the Website www.g2athletics.org, or call Gonzalez at (316) 727-1622 or Garcia at (316) 990-8994.