photo by ASHLEY LEE
The Power Up softball team was undefeated and won the 14C USSSA World Series in Kansas City, Mo. Team members include: Front (from left) — Lexi McClellan of Ozark, Whitney Tatum of Booneville, Baylee Riley of Hector, and Morgan Shaw of Spiro. Back — coach Rick McClellan of Ozark, Sidney Bieker of Van Buren, Aliyah Hall of Fort Smith, Mariah Reagan of Booneville, Lauren Wilson of Van Buren, Paige Lee of Hector, Haley Hogan of Van Buren, Sammie Kuhns of Pocola, and coach Jeff Kuhns of Pocola.
The Power Up Fast-pitch softball team won the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) 14C World Series championship in Kansas City, Mo.
Power Up went undefeated for seven games to win and only allowed 7 runs and scored a total of 42 runs during the tournament.
This championship now ranks Power Up fourth (out of 708 teams) in the nation in 14C for power ranking according to the USSSA website. Also, according to the world series director, Power Up placed second in sportsmanship.
Sammie Kuhns of Pocola received the Pitching Most Valuable Player (MVP) award while shortstop Lexi McClellan of Ozark received the All-Tournament MVP award.
During pool play, first baseman Haley Hogan of Van Buren and second baseman Paige Lee of Hector both received an MVP award.
Extraordinary plays ensured the wins. McClellan hit a grand slam and had the most runs scored for Power Up. Hogan hit a home run over the fence and third baseman Mariah Reagan of Booneville made a double play. Sidney Bieker of Greenwood made a diving catch in center field to end the championship game.
Left fielder Aliyah Hall of Fort Smith came through on an awesome catch to end an important inning. Pitcher Lauren Wilson of Van Buren, pitcher Whitney Tatum of Booneville and outfielder Baylee Riley of Hector made timely hits to ensure Power Up wins.
Catcher Morgan Shaw stayed strong behind the plate catching players off guard at the bases. Lee threw a player out while on her knees; and Kuhns made an extra effort chasing a ball to throw a runner out at first to stop the opponents momentum.
Overall, Power Up has an in-class record of 34 wins and 5 losses. During tournament plays, the team has four first-place wins, two second-place wins, and three third-place wins.
Bieker Electric and Mickle-Wagner-Coleman, Inc. Engineers of Fort Smith were sponsors for Power Up.
A total of 55 teams suited up for the event with 23 teams in the upper bracket with Power Up.