GEORGIA TEAM ROLLS TO SPA 75 MAJOR WORLD TITLE
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Who called them the LEFTOVERS?
The 2014 SPA 75 MAJOR WORLD CHAMPS were more like “fresh out of the package” as opposed to leftovers. The PEACH STATE team went 3-0 in bracket play at COLUMBUS, OHIO'S BERLINER PARK, AUGUST 7-11 to take their first ever 75'S SPA MAJOR TITLE.
“Some of us have been playing together for ten years,” SPA 2014 75 MAJOR MANAGER-OF-THE-YEAR and the LEFTOVERS head man KEN GRIFFITH said, “ But this was the first year the SOUTHERN LEFTOVERS played as a 75 MAJOR in the SPA WORLDS.”
"Although we could have used any players that live east of the Mississippi, we only have players from GEORGIA and our border states (NC, SC.FLA,TN,AL)." he proudly stated.
In winning the 75 MAJOR CROWN, the LEFTOVERS disposed of JIMMY'S MINNEOTA GOLD 27-12, HAMELS 75'S 21-20 and HAMELS 75's again, this time 23-8 in the CHAMPIONSHIP GAME.
“Hey, those were all good teams,” GRIFFITH said, “We lost to MINNESOTA in pool play and everyone knows HAMELS is a good team.”
According to GRIFFITH tournament play always seems to boil down to one of the teams having a little extra advantage in one secondary aspect and that is what usually tips the scale.
“All of the teams in the tournament could hit and all played great defense,” he explained, “The one part of the game we had a big edge on the other teams was our speed and double plays. We turned several double plays."
GRIFFITH also was more anxious to talk about the tournament itself instead of his team winning the championship.
“This was great, twenty-two teams in the 75's and 80's divisions, that was fantastic,” GRIFFITH said, “Any 75 or 80 Division teams that are not playing SPA tournaments do not know what they are missing. We've played all the other organizations events and SPA by far has the best tournaments for our age group.”
GRIFFITH was especially excited about the artificial turf at BERLINER and TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR DON CHERRY as well as the way SPA communicated prior to the tournament and kept the teams informed.
“To stand in a torrential rain for twenty minutes and as soon as it stops we are back on the field playing was amazing,” GRIFFITH said, “DON CHERRY did a great job adjusting the schedule as the tournament progressed and allowing teams to finish their brackets earlier.”
“SPA constantly kept us informed as to who was attending, what hotels were available and what the schedule would be,” GRIFFITH said, “They showed that they just don't stop talking with you once they receive your entry fee. They follow through all the way and they definitely are the player's organization.”
One thing, the LEFTOVERS' MAIN MAN would like to see reinstated at the WORLD TOURNAMENT are official scorekeepers.
“I know it may raise the entry fee a little, but it certainly helps when you have one book which is officials. It gets rid of all the 'which score is right' debate,” he stated.
However, there was no debate as to who the LEFTOVERS' MVP was. TOM SIDES and his .780 batting average was an easy choice. He also added to his tournament credentials with tremendous play on defense as the teams midfielder.
Joining SIDES on the ALL-AMERICAN team were DUFFIE STONE (P 2-0 .830), WALT TAYLOR (3B, .710), RAY KENT (RCF,.790), WAYNE YATES (SS, .715) and JIM BAVIS (LF,.780). As a team the LEFTOVERS hit in the high .600's.
Others on the roster were: PETE BURGER, BEN DUPREE, DAVID FOLTZ, PHIL JOHNSON, RON BOYER, MIKE DE SORBO, RON PFEIFFER, JAKE WOOD and HAROLD HAMMOND.
Although not making the ALL AMERICAN TEAM, pitcher MIKE DESORBO received special recognition from his manager.
"MIKE DESORBO, as usual, pitched three outstanding games and assisted in many other ways," GRIFFITH said, "MIKE really had a good tournament."
BURGER and JOHNSON in addition to their playing assisted GRIFFITH with the coaching duties. DIANNA DUPREE, who GRIFFITH said "...was very important to the team as any of the players", was the team's scorekeeper, statistician and traveling secretary.
“This was just a tremendous tournament,” GRIFFITH repeated, “ There is no doubt in my mind that it will continue to grow as the 70's teams get older and SPA'S great reputation of how they treat the 75's and 80's teams continues to spread.”
“You can bet we will not only be back next year but we will also be attending other SPA REGIONAL tournaments. Wwe want to play where other 75's and 80's are playing and there is no doubt they are playing SPA.!!