Gold-Seeking Heat

The Henryetta Heat 14-Under softball team is competing at the USSSA National Championship tournament in Florida this week. The Heat is one of 18 teams battling this week for the USSSA crown. Prior to leaving for Florida, the Heat came away with the team championship July with the Jamming in July tournament July 7-8 in Bixby and went 6-1 at the 2-day event.

(COURTESY PHOTO)

By LARRY OWEN
Free-Lance Sports Editor

The Henryetta Heat 14-Under fastpitch softball team is currently spending the week soaking up the Florida sunshine.

No, the local tournament team is not on vacation.

The Heat are participating in the USSSA National Championships this week at the Preston Hood Athletic Center, trying to defeat 17 other talented teams for the honor of being a national champion.

The Henryetta diamond squad is the only Oklahoma-based team at the week-long event, as the other 17 teams are from Indiana (2), Louisiana (1), Tennessee (3), Texas (5), Kentucky (1), Missouri (2), Georgia (1), Maryland (1), and New Jersey (1).

The Heat were scheduled to compete in a pair of Pool Play games to open their tournament participation, taking on the Indiana Beasts Monday at 1:20 p.m. EDT and the Maryville (Tennessee) Wildcats at 2:40 p.m. EDT.

The Henryetta squad entered the tournament with a 49-12-1 record, which includes championships in nine of their 13 tournaments since last September.

Four of the tournament championships the Heat have won this season have been at the Friendlies, while three other championships have come at the Fall Bash Rings, Spring Fling, and Run Hard/Turn Left tournaments. The latest tournament title The Heat took home this season was the Jamming in July 16-Under championship July 7 at Bentley Park in Bixby.

On June 8, the Heat competed at the Last Chance 16-Under tournament in Bixby, finishing runner-up at the event. The Heat went 1-1 in Pool Play, defeating the Fastpitch Futures squad 1-0 and suffering a 1-0 defeat to the Oklahoma Intimidators 16-Under team.
In the double-elimination tournament, the Heat notched a 4-0 win over OK Impact, then defeated OK Gametime 12-5. The Henryetta squad punched their ticket to the winner's bracket finals with an 8-1 win over the Fastpitch Futures.

The Heat faced off against OK Gametime, suffering back-to-back losses by margins of 9-1 and 9-3, respectively, to take home the runner-up trophy.

The weekend of June 30 and July 1, the Henryetta squad competed at the Freedom Rings 16-Under tournament in Tulsa. The Heat went 2-1 in Pool Play action with the lone loss coming against Team Hype by a 6-4 margin. The two Pool Play victories for the Henryetta diamond squad were against the Arkansas Outlaws (7-2) and the OKC Gold (8-1).

In tournament play, the Heat edged the Lady Sooners 10-9 in their opening-round contest before the tournament was washed out due to heavy rainfall.

The Heat participated at the Jamming in July tournament July 7-8 in Bixby and went 6-1 at the 2-day event. The Henryetta squad went 2-0 in Pool Play, defeating the Arkansas Outlaws 4-2 and Team Hype 7-0.

In tournament play, the Heat routed Oklahoma Gold Rush 10-0, then edged past Team Hype 4-1 in the second round of the double-elimination tournament. The Heat advanced to the winner's bracket finals with an 11-0 drubbing of the Arkansas Outlaws.

Team Hype worked their way through the loser's bracket following the 4-1 loss to the Heat, earning a rematch with the Henryetta squad. Team Hype took the first contest by a 5-4 margin, setting up a 'Winner Take All' championship game.

The Heat refused to be denied the tournament championship, defeating Team Hype by a 6-4 margin to take home the 16-Under championship trophy and a little momentum into the USSSA National Championship tournament.

In Monday's Pool Play action at the USSSA National Championship tournament, the Heat earned a 7-3 win over the Indiana Beasts, then, following a lightning delay, tied the Maryville Wildcats 1-1.

The Henryetta squad is scheduled to begin tournament play today (Wednesday) at 12:30 p.m. EDT in Niceville. The Heat's first tournament opponent will be the winner of Atlanta Premier 04 and Esprit 03, who will meet in an 8 a.m. EDT battle today (Wednesday).

A win this afternoon will put the Heat in a 6:30 p.m. EDT battle Thursday in Niceville with the winner of Marucci Elite and Indy Dreams Gold, who will battle one another at 3:30 p.m. EDT on Wednesday.

A loss on Wednesday will drop the Henryetta squad into the loser's bracket and an elimination game Thursday at 12:30 p.m. EDT against the loser of Marucci Elite and Indy Dreams Gold.

The 18-team, double-elimination, tournament is scheduled to continue Friday and Saturday in Fort Walton Beach.

The other teams in the USSSA National Championship tournament in Florida are (LA) High Voltage, (MD) Heartbreakers, Texas Sting, Tennesse Firebirds, (NJ) Intensity South, Tennessee Elite, Louisville (KY) Stunners, (TX) Centex Buzz, (MO) Tribe, (TX) Bad Intentions, and Texas Eclipse.

Below is the complete bracket for the USSSA 14-Under National Championship tournament that the Henryetta Heat are currently competing at in Florida.
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USSSA 14U National Championships
July 15-21, 2018 • Fort Walton Beach, Florida/Niceville, Florida
Tournament Teams
Henryetta Heat
Indiana Beasts
Maryville Wildcats
Atlanta (GA) Premier 04
(MO) Esprit 03
(LA) High Voltage
(MD) Heartbreakers
(TX) Marucci Elite
Indy Dreams Gold
Texas Sting
Tennesse Firebirds
(NJ) Intensity South
Tennessee Elite
Louisville (KY) Stunners
(TX) Centex Buzz
(MO) Tribe
(TX) Bad Intentions
Texas Eclipse

Tournament Bracket
Game 1: Texas Eclipse vs Maryville Wildcats; Wednesday, 8 a.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 2: Atlanta Premier 04 vs Esprit 03; Wednesday, 8 a.m. (Niceville Field 2)
Game 3: Tennessee Firebirds vs Louisville Stunners; Wednesday, 9:30 a.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 4: High Voltage vs Bad Intentions; Wednesday, 9:30 a.m. (Niceville Field 2)
Game 5: Intensity South vs Tennessee Elite; Wednesday, 2 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 6: Marucci Elite vs Indy Dreams Gold; Wednesday, 3:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 7: Texas Sting vs Centex Buzz; Wednesday, 5 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 8: Heartbreakers vs Tribe; Wednesday, 6:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 9: Indiana Beasts vs Game 1 winner; Wednesday, 11 a.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 10: Game 2 winner vs Heat; Wednesday, 12:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 11: Game 2 loser vs Game 3 loser; Thursday, 8 a.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 12: Game 1 loser vs Game 7 loser; Thursday, 9:30 a.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 13: Game 5 loser vs Game 9 loser; Thursday, 11 a.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 14: Game 6 loser vs Game 10 loser; Thursday, 12:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 15: Game 4 loser vs Game 11 winner; Thursday, 2 p.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 16: Game 8 loser vs Game 12 winner; Thursday, 3:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 17: Game 3 winner vs Game 4 winner; Thursday, 5 p.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 18: Game 9 winner vs Game 5 winner; Thursday, 5 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 19: Game 6 winner vs Game 10 winner; Thursday, 6:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 1)
Game 20: Game 7 winner vs Game 8 winner; Thursday, 6:30 p.m. (Niceville Field 4)
Game 21: Game 16 winner vs Game 17 loser; Friday, 8 a.m. (FWB Field 2)
Game 22: Game 14 winner vs Game 18 loser; Friday, 8 a.m. (FWB Field 3)
Game 23: Game 13 winner vs Game 19 loser; Friday, 9:30 a.m. (FWB Field 2)
Game 24: Game 15 winner vs Game 20 loser; Friday, 9:30 a.m. (FWB Field 3)
Game 25: Game 17 winner vs Game 18 winner; Friday, 11 a.m. (FWB Field 2)
Game 26: Game 19 winner vs Game 20 winner; Friday, 11 a.m. (FWB Field 3)
Game 27: Game 24 winner vs Game 23 winner; Friday, 12:30 p.m. (FWB Field 2)
Game 28: Game 22 winner vs Game 21 winner; Friday, 12:30 p.m. (FWB Field 3)
Game 29: Game 25 loser vs Game 27 winner; Friday, 2 p.m. (FWB Field 2)
Game 30: Game 26 loser vs Game 28 winner; Friday, 2 p.m. (FWB Field 3)
Game 31: Game 25 winner vs Game 26 winner; Saturday, 8 a.m. (FWB Field 4)
Game 32: Game 29 winner vs Game 30 winner; Saturday, 9:30 a.m. (FWB Field 4)
Game 33: Game 31 loser vs Game 32 winner; Saturday, 11 a.m. (FWB Field 4)
Game 34: Game 31 winner vs Game 33 winner; Saturday, 12:30 p.m. (FWB Field 4)
Game 35 (if necessary): Game 31 winner vs Game 33 winner; Saturday, 2 p.m. (FWB Field 4)

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