ASA state commissioner Don Fishel, of Prescott, is singing the praises of employees of the Payson Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department, Payson High School and all the volunteers who helped stage the ASA Junior Olympics Class B Girls Fastpitch Arizona State Championship tournaments.
“All of them did a terrific job of taking care of a tournament like this,” he said.
“The fields were in good shape and the staff worked hard.
“Also the high school provided their field, prepared it and took care of it great for all the games.”
The tournament, which drew and eye-popping 52 teams to Payson, was played July 8-10.
The success of the tournament has Fishel planning additional events.
“We are looking forward to having more tournaments (in Payson) in the future,” he said.
Parks, Recreation and Tourism Director Cameron Davis is also excited about bringing more ASA tournaments to Payson, but ones that might not be as large as 52 teams.
“Maybe a little smaller (tournaments) but just as significant,” he said.
Although the tournament was what Davis now calls “really great” and others are saying was “a smashing success” it did strain town resources especially when rain fell Saturday evening.
Some games had to be moved to other fields and some were rescheduled but at tournaments’ end, 105 of 114 originally scheduled games were played.
In the 10U or 10-years-and-under, bracket, the Yuma Stars took first over runner-up Extreme Fast Pitch of Phoenix.
The Yuma Diamonds won the 12U competition out-dueling second place Arizona Pastime Inferno of Phoenix.
In the 14U bracket, Chandler’s Lady Dragons were first and Avalanche of Tucson claimed the silver medal.
Ridge Fast Pitch of Mesa went home with the 16U title. Phoenix’s Scorpion was second.
In 18U competition, Scorpion of Avondale edged runner-up Verde Valley Heat for top honors.
Age division champions are eligible to advance to the Western National Championships when they are played Aug. 3 in Prescott.