Sunday, July 20, 2003

Metro Softball returns this week


Watanabe hopes to stop Perkins 3-peat

By Ryan Ernst
The Cincinnati Enquirer

The Cincinnati Metro Softball Championships will open play Thursday and continue through Aug. 5, primarily at Rumpke Park in Crosby Township.

Watanabe Optical, a former winner of the event's major division and historically one of the top teams in Ohio, returns to the Metro after a two-year layoff. During the team's absence, Perkins Roofing won both Major titles.

This year Perkins will attempt to become the first back-to-back-to-back major winner since VIP Limousine won five straight championships from 1988 to 1992.

Watanabe recently beat Perkins 17-9 in the championship game of the EMR-Worth-Amateur Softball Association Super Shootout. Like the Metro, the tournament was an ASA-sanctioned event held at Rumpke Park.

Other winners from last year are Taylor Made in the A division, JSA/Nasty Boys in B, Kidwell/O'Charley's/MSM in C and Red Dogz in D.

Teams in divisions A through D must all step up to the next division after a Metro title.

Though the open play of the tournament draws more attention, the Metro also has three industrial tournaments. All took place July 11-13.

In the industrial major division, Pipe Fitters Local 392 Blue added to its long list of titles.

Flour Fernald took the city title, its second in four years. And Silko Fire Protection won the C division for its first Metro title.

The draw for the Metro Championships will take place on Tuesday night.

E-mail rernst@enquirer.com

High-tech softball bats add power - and danger




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