A local softball team loaded with local players just completed an amazing run this summer.
The Goon Squad recently competed in the World Tournament at ESPN Wide World of Sports in Florida.
Members of the team who participated in the World Tournament were Jeremy Burton, Kiel Feeser, David Hughes, Ryan Kiefer, Sean Maroney, Willie Monbeck, Travis Owen, Jeremy Shellabarger, Gabe Swallow, Taylor Wellbaum and Steve Zweibel.
Gonn Squad was one of 216 teams that qualified for the tournament.
During the season, some of their bigger accomplishments had been winning Shwan Meyers Memorial Tournament and E’s Up Bro Tournament, finished seventh at state tournament and 13th at Winter Worlds, which was in February in Chatanooga.
“You have to qualify (for the World tournament),” Kiefer said. “You get points for the tournaments you play in during the season.”
Which led to them having the opportunity to play in the World Tournament.
Goon Squad finished in the top 64 of the double-elimination tournament, beating teams from Denver, Chicago and Ohio before losing to teams from North Carolina and Jacksonville.
“I had played in the Worlds before, but for the majority of guys this was their first time,” Kiefer said. “It was an incredible experience. It is hard to describe what a great experience it is to play in the Worlds. Everything about the place is amazing.”
And it is not easy finding a way to play in all the tournaments and do all the traveling that is required.
“It is tough to do,” Kiefer said. “All these guys have jobs and a lot of them have families. All the tournaments are on the weekends and some of them have jobs on the weekend and some of them have families, so it is tough. We have a core of 15-18 guys and try to have a solid 11-12 guys for each tournament.”
In the end, it was all worth it, with an experience they will never forget.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.