The U10, U12 and U14 Hot Shots softball teams each made it to the championship finals at the recent Summer Slam Tournament in Susanville, Calif. The U12 and U14 teams were edged out by the competition, to finish in second place, while the U10 Hot Shots continued their championship ride, nabbing their sixth tournament title.
In the final match-ups, the Nevada Lightning (an "A" division tournament team) topped the U12 Hot Shots by one run to win 7-6, and the U14 Hot Shots fell to the Reno Predators, 1-6.
The U10 Hot Shots have kept the momentum up this season. During the Susanville tournament, they outscored the competition 84-2 in six games, and pitchers Janae Blue Horse, Valerie Blue Horse, Jaileine Salciedo and Alyssa Smokey collectively struck out 35 batters. They faced the Sparks All-Stars in the deciding game, a team which managed to score 38 runs in Saturday's seeding games.
U10 Coach Joey McNinch said, "We hadn't played the All-Stars before, so we were looking forward to seeing them in the final game. They played very well on Saturday, and we knew they would be the team to beat."
To win the tournament, the Hot Shots topped the Sparks All-Stars 9-0, ending the game in five innings. Leading the team offensively were Maggie Usher and Alyssa Smokey with two singles each, Madeline Boyer with a double and Jasmine McNinch with a single. Boyer and McNinch had two RBIs, and Smokey and Janae Blue Horse also grabbed RBIs for the team.
"We're strong at the plate, and that will really help as we head to the State Tournament and the World Series," said Coach McNinch. "Our pitchers are obviously an asset. They aren't giving teams much of an opportunity to score on us. It positions us well as we approach the end of the season."
The Hot Shots have three tournaments remaining. They will play in Reno this weekend, the State Tournament in Fernley, July 6-8 and the All World Sports World Series in Sacramento, July 11-15.