The dominance shown by Quad-Cities teams in fastpitch softball has found its way into the local slowpitch ranks.
In Sunday's finals of the men's and women's ASA Class C state slowpitch tournaments at the Rock Island Jaycees/Alan Campbell Complex, the Quad-Cities enjoyed a title-game sweep.
O'Meara's/Charlie's Place captured the men's championship, rallying from a six-run deficit to score four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to upend the Dixon-based Freddy's squad by a 10-9 count, completing a 7-0 run through the winners' bracket.
``We wanted to get it done in one game,'' said Charlie's Place co-manager Rod Kaiser, who was the winning pitcher against Freddy's. Kaiser helped himself with four hits, including an inside-the-park home run. ``It would've been interesting to see how we responded (to a second title contest), but we're pleased to get out in one.''
In the women's final, East Moline's Leisure Time squad capped a perfect winners' bracket run of their own by defeating Pekin's Wiseman Concrete by a 15-6 count after building a commanding 12-0 lead through the first three innings.
``We hit the ball well, but defense has been a big-time key for this team,'' said Leisure Time manager Pat Dugan, whose squad won all five of their state-tournament contests. ``We got a great team effort all the way through the tournament. Everyone contributed, and (assistant coaches) Nick Angaran and Rick Coopman did a great job.
``Leisure Time is a lot like a family. It's a real good group.''
In the men's field, the first-place Charlie's Place club was followed by Freddy's, third-place Permabilt of Bloomington and the fourth-place Leisure Time squad.
After the Leisure Time women and second-place Wiseman Concrete came third-place INS Integrated Network, a Quad-Cities squad, and fourth-place Kouri's Pub/Roxy's, which hails from Peoria.
Charlie's place is first: In the championship game, Charlie's Place trailed 9-3 after four innings before scoring three fifth-inning runs to cut the deficit to 9-6. In the seventh, a two-run single by Tony Spaulding tied the score at 9-9 before an error brought him home with the winning run.
Charlie's opened Sunday with a 19-9 victory over the Aledo Softball Club behind Jason Wheeler's four hits and three-hit outings by Mick Kurtz, Jeff Keys and Travis Fiegel before topping Master Builders by a 12-2 count. Kurtz's four hits helped propel Charlie's past Permabilt 17-7 in the winners' bracket final.
After falling to Charlie's Place, Aledo was eliminated with an 18-12 loss to MCSC. Christopher D's opened with a 14-5 win over Valley behind three hits from Jeff Schimmel, John Reynolds and Dave Tertipes before falling 19-5 to Permabilt and 7-4 to Leisure Time.
Valley, which started Sunday in the winners' bracket, was eliminated with losses to Christopher D's and Freddy's. Leisure Time fell into the losers' bracket with an 8-5 loss to Master Builders, then scored wins over D's, Pro Print (17-14 in nine innings) and MCSC (7-6) before losing 6-3 to Freddy's. Innovations and Blackhawk Foundry/Q.C. Laminating were also eliminated.
No leisure time in title run: Pitcher Pat Hajne picked up a pair of wins in Leisure Time's title run, while the hitting of Wendy Wall, Debbie Styx-Peters, Reni Campbell, Dee Styx-Caffery, Jen Bull and Michelle Burney fueled the offense.
Peters and Caffery each had four hits in the championship game, with Wall, Campbell and Bull each rapping out three and Burney contributing a pair of hits. Leisure Time topped INS 12-5 to reach the finals.
After that loss, which featured two-hit games from Andrea Johnson, Kelly Gorgal and Laurie DeLosReyes, INS was eliminated with a 4-2 setback to Wiseman despite two-hit games by Gorgal and Mandy Garcia.
The K-Sox entered Sunday in the losers' bracket and opened with a 14-6 win over another QC squad, Work Fitness, as Karrie Bogdan recorded three hits, with Ann Maletta, Yvonne Kletke and LeAnn Repas notching two apiece. In their next game, the K-Sox fell 17-7 to Roxy's despite three hits from Repas and two from Lisa Holdorf.