2017 SOFTBALL TOURNAMENT SCHEDULED
JUNE 17th MARK YOUR CALENDARS!
Brief Message from the Sheftel’s We continue to be surprised and thankful for all the support we have received from our friends, Parkland High School, Justin’s friends and the community. It was truly a heroic feat to have the first softball tournament planned and coordinated three weeks after Justin’s death. In 2009 we witnessed another heroic feat with all the teams showing up for the tournament in pouring rain, mud and no sun in sight. They did not just show up, they played with smiles on their faces and delight in participating in spite of the elements. We have never seen so much caked on mud on the players before; everyone seemed to be having a great time. We know Justin would have been in the rain and mud also smiling and enjoying the day! So thank you for showing up, for smiling, for playing and most of all for helping us to heal and to remember Justin.
2010 brought a warmer day, no rain, and for the first time repeat winners. How did that happen. Class of ’04 from the Men’s Division took home the trophy for a Second time and the Returning Champ-Hens, did just that and won for a second year. Games were played well and with a lot of enthusiasm.
In 2011 we had another repeater only it was 6 years apart. Sea Jays took home the trophy after winning in 2005 (the first tournament), they were able to repeat — I think they were surprised. They played with a focus and intensity everyone observed. In the Women’s Division we had a new winner, The Home Girls, brought home the trophy, they have been in the playoffs but had not won, this was their year! 2012 WOW what a day we had. The best yet, Justin was doing is job upstairs for us. The Hot Mama’s took home the Women’s trophy, a win they have had their eyes on for a number of years, Congrats to them. The Men’s Championship Game proved to be a nail biter with extra innings to be played, as the teams kept tying up the score and going bat to bat –The Young Ones took home the trophy, but Team America was a very strong competitor. 2013 The Young Ones repeated playing consistently throughout the day. Diamond Gals won the Women’s Championship and played with a lot of heart and ability.
2014 will be our 10th annual, we are planning for a commemorative type of tournament. We had Steve Carlton attend to lend some fun and a ‘celebrity’ touch for the 10th anniversary. In 2015 we had a tough year due to rain had to reschedule fortunately we had 20 of the 22 teams able to attend, we still had a wonderful time, great weather, sorry we missed have Charlie Manuel. 2016 Steve Carlton returned and we had a wonderful day with the weather being perfect. We teamed up with St. Luke’s and sponsored a free clinic with Steve Carlton and their trainers participating. Lot of fun and great crowds. 2017 promises to be another great tournament, sponsored by St. Luke’s David Akers will be participating and we will be offering a free clinic along with a number of activities and lots of games to be played.
Please come and share with us in making some memories and keeping the memory of Justin in our hearts and raising money for good causes throughout the Lehigh Valley.
Let’s get the Bats A’talkin’, and play some ball!
Elliot, Linda and Sasha “Always in our hearts”
The focus for the softball tournament was to provide a way to honor Justin and not forget his life or him. It is fun and competitive while not being intensely competitive. Everyone plays, the games have been exciting and typically close. The format has grown over the years. The softball tournament started literally three weeks after Justin died. His dear friends that he had been rooming with at the beach got together and decided, with the help of Eric Roberts as an advisor, to have a softball tournament.
It started with just 4 teams, all representing the different groups that were celebrating in Ocean City, the Lucky 7’s, (Justin’s House), The Green Hills Team, The Sea Jays, and a Family Team. A Home Run Derby was included, and a day was dedicated to celebrating Justin’s life. The SeaJay team was solid and won the tournament.
There was a lot of fun and excitement around the tournament, more people wanted to join in and support the cause. Another four teams were added in 2006, the second year.These teams included a girl’s team, faculty team, an 11th/12th grade team and another team Captained by Justin Haas. There was some great competition, the Green Hills team came away with the Trophy, with the final game played under the lights.
2007 was a full day with the teams increased to 16, double elimination format with the final game played under the lights. A long but very satisfying and fun day. In 2008, we increased again to 20 teams, adding a woman’s division to the mix.
The Parkland faculty stayed steady throughout and won the 2008 tournament. Although they elected to not continue their run in 2009, let’s just say they were sore, weary and worn out. The Mocktail event was introduced in 2008 and will back again for its fifth year in 2012.
In the women’s division with four teams playing, championship game played on the main softball field, Dancin’ Divas proved to be the strongest team. They came up with the runs and defense to claim the trophy.
2009 was a challenge – weather did not cooperate, lot of rain, mud and smiles as everyone got wet and very dirty. The woman’s division champion was a new comer to the tournament the “Racquet Friends”, with a lot of sliders in the mud they proved they can play in any weather, and with any hairdo!
A Men’s championship tournament was played later in August, (games were called due to the rain), Class of ’04 prevailed in a close game to take the trophy. This was their third year in the tournament, Captain Brett Kresge always comes prepared with a very competitive team that knows how to have fun.
In 2010 we had the champions for the both the Men’s and Women’s teams to repeat. Class of ’04 came back to win again as did the “Returning Champ-Hens”.
Seventh Annual tournament, we had a few more activities, more food and community involvement. A new team was added the Number Crushers, who went all the way to the playoffs, captained by Greg Christman. Another team changed their line up and renamed themselves from Textile to Team America. The 2011 champions were the Sea Jays, coming in with focus and sheer will power! Their second win, as they won in 2005 the first tournament, what a great game – it was close all the way – and victory for them. In the Women’s Division — new champions, Home Girls, competed well and stopped the Returning Champ-Hens from being three time champs.
In 2012 the championship game proved to be a tough competition. The Young Ones persevered and after 2 extra innings to win against Team America. It was an exciting and up and down game. In the Women’s Division we had a new winner, and one that has waited 4 years for their trophy. The Hot Mama’s took home trophy defeating last year’s winner The Home Girls.
2013 was another beautiful day, we had repeat winners this year in the Men’s Division with “The Young Ones” winning again, Team Swagger was close for the early part of the game but lost their ‘Swagger’. The Women’s Winner “Diamond Gals” was a first time team and winner. Both will be back next year!
2014 was our tenth annual and a special tournament for us to really pause and recognize the support of the community and to remember Justin. We had a great day with Steve Carlton appearing, lots of activities, and wonderful people coming all day to meet Steve and see some softball. The Young Ones took the trophy for a three time repeat. They beat Team America, tough game. The Diamond Gals repeated and beat the Biddies.
2015, we had a tough year, rained out and had to reschedule, very fortunate we had a full roster for the men, and 4 of the 6 teams for the women. Two new winners, the men’s winner was Team America, always knocking on the door, they took the trophy home this year. Dirty Divas, won the women’s championship, playing against the Diamond Gals.
2016 was a perfect day, Steve Carlton returned, we had new activities — dunk tank and free clinic, great auction. Team America returned to win the 2016 trophy, and Diamond Gals reclaimed their winning streak.