The 65 women's Ohio Cardinals went 6-0 at the SPA Dalton Georgia World Championship September 20-22 to win the 65 Division crown.
It was the second World title for the Cards and they made sure they would win this one.
After going 3-0 (Cards 18 Golden Gals 12, Cards 16 Jolico 65's 10, Cards 12 Smokey Mountain 11) they left o doubts who was the champion going flying through bracket play.
"It wasn't as easy as it looks," Ohio Cardinal and SPA Women's 65's Manager-of-the Year Colleen Needham said. "We had to beat the Fun Bunch twice in the finals and no lead is safe against them. I think they have won it the last two years."
The Cardinals beat the Golden Gals 14-11 before beating the Fun Bunch twice by 21-4 and 17-2. It was the team's third title in four tournaments this season. They also won the Birmingham Senior Games and a large tournament in Arizona. They also took runner-up honors in a St.Louis event.
"We do a lot of traveling and we play our own way," Needham said. "Everyone gets along well together and we all look forward to the tournaments and sharing the fun with each other"
The coach also said a big factor in her team's success is that the majority of the ladies all live in the same Ohio area and before each tournament they have three or four long practices to work on their game, especially defense.
"Defense is key, every team can hit," the coach said. "You do not want to give teams extra hits by making errors, so we really work on our defense."
The Cardinals can also hit. They bat 12 and are balanced and loaded from 1-thru-12.
Taking MVP honors at Dalton was Linda Davis. Selected to the All-American All-Star team were: Jeanette Worley, Maureen Fitzgerald, Avis Taylor, Sue Minnich and Teresa Merickel.
"I really hate to see us have to pick six players who should be All-Stars because we could have put all the names in a hat and pulled out six names and they would have been All-Stars," Needham said. 'What makes us so good is our roster from top to bottom are All-Star players."
Members of the 2017 65 Champion Ohio Cardinals are: Needham, Davis, Worley, Fitzgerald, Taylor, Minnich, Merickel, Barbara Krack, Judith Peele, Teresa Ann Smith, Marilyn Lovette, Janet Deters, Peggy Meacham, Kathryn Sowers, Mary Bullen, Cathy Fletcher, Ophelia Miley, assistant coach Gary Igo and team statistician
Finishing second at Dalton was Fun Bunch followed by Jolico Sr 65's, Golden Gals and Smokey Mtn Seniors.