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Oceanfront Views and Wind Gusts Make For an Interesting Tidewater Classic

April 1, 2023

By Donna McGuire
Softball News Report

Oceanfront view outside of host hotel, Sandcastle Resort On The Beach, Virigina Beach.

     Strong winds added an extra challenge to fly ball coverage as 54 teams from 10 states competed in the recent Tidewater Classic held in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

     Twelve teams earned berths in the 2024 Tournament of Champions by winning their divisions in the Senior Softball-USA event, which ran from March 29 through April 2. Two of those teams – the 55+ Major and 65+ Major winners – successfully defended 2022 championships.

     Players and fans enjoyed some special amenities thanks to the event’s host, the City of Virginia Beach, which offered hotels with oceanfront views as well as a variety of food and entertainment options.

     The unseasonable winds arrived uninvited. Gusts reached 30 to 40 mph.

     “The lesson of the day was: ‘Don’t assume anything on fly balls,’” Tournament Director Tim McElroy said. “Balls hit to center field could land in foul territory, or on the next diamond. Routine fly balls turned into adventures for outfielders.”


     Men’s 40+ Masters Platinum: Certified Ground Breakers (photo below), a Major team from Maryland, put together an impressive tournament, losing only one game by one run in pool play. After entering bracket play as the fourth seed, Certified ripped off four consecutive victories by an average score of 31-11. It defeated the Major Plus team HDI 40s of Virginia 26-16 in the title game. Lighthouse Transportation of Rhode Island won three elimination games to finish third in the seven-team bracket.

     Men’s 40+ Masters AAA: Old People Problems of Delaware (photo below) went 6-1 overall and won the title with a 16-11 victory in the “if” championship game over Gigantes/O.C. of Maryland after losing the first championship game by one run. Past Our Prime won three elimination games to finish third in the seven-team bracket.

     Men’s 50+ Platinum: Fifth-seeded Utility Systems C&E of Maryland (photo below) needed two championship games to subdue second-seeded Automotive Triage/JG Construction/Haterz Athletics of North Carolina. After losing the first title game 24-19, Utility Systems won the second 20-19. Top-seeded Walkoff of Maryland won three elimination games to finish third in the nine-team bracket.

     Men’s 50+ AAA: The top-seeded Maryland Classics (photo below), which went 6-1 overall, lost its first title game 30-17 but won the second 24-18 over BACKSIDE of Virginia. Strictly Business of Virginia finished third in the four-team bracket.

     Men’s 50-55+ Silver: Top-seeded Extra Innings/OBF (photo below), a 55+ AAA team from Virginia, capped an unbeaten tournament with a 21-6 title game victory over the 50+ AA team Flatline/Van Meter Homes of Virginia. The 55+ AAA team GOATS of Maryland finished third in the three-team bracket.

     Men’s 55+ Major: Defending champion .50 Cor Sports & Apparel/Grit Hounds Softball of Virginia (photo below) double-dipped Bond 124/Caterbone Realty Group of Connecticut 27-26 and 24-22 to win the six-team division. The N.E. Merchants of Maryland finished third in the six-team division.

     Men’s 55-60+ AA: DHF Contractors 60s of Virginia (photo below) defeated the Longshoremen 55s of Virginia 19-9 in the championship game. The New York Capitals finished third in the three-team division.

     Men’s 60+ Major: Second-seeded Building Innovations Group/TJ Plumbing of New York (photo below) lost its first bracket game then won five in a row, including 22-21 and 32-26 championship game victories over The Bank of Delaware. The Carolina A’s of North Carolina finished third in the five-team bracket.

     Men’s 60+ AAA: Top-seeded and unbeaten Northern Virginia Force won three games by one run but made sure the title game was less tense by defeating Turn 2 Electric of North Carolina 31-13. The Hudson Valley Cyclones of New York finished third in the three-team division.

     Men’s 65+ Major: Defending champion Talaga Construction of Connecticut (photo below) won a repeat title by defeating Promotion/Phoenix Tube of New Jersey 21-16 and 14-3 in a best-of-three format.

     Men’s 65+ AAA: The Hudson Valley Cyclones of New York (photo below) capped a 5-0 tournament by defeating The Starboard of Delaware 23-10 in the title game. Northern Virginia Force 65s finished third in the three-team bracket.

     Men’s 70+ AAA: Northern Virginia Force 70s (photo below) beat the Syracuse Cyclones of New York 23-8 and 29-15 in a best-of-three format.

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