Winston Missouri boy’s fastpitch

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Make 2011 a strong year for boy’s fastpitch softball

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011


The Northwest Royals won the 2009 Amateur Softball Association (ASA) Boy’s Age 10-Under National Championship at Caswell Park in North Mankato, which will once again host the boy’s and young men’s national championships, Aug. 5-7.

For more information, visit the ASA website at www.asasoftball.com. Or contact Mankato Tournament Director, Bruce Walters, at fgroup21@gmail.com, and also Mankato Registration Contact, Jack Norman, at jnormancpa@acncpa.com.

WINSTON, MISSOURI – Is it fastpitch season yet? Not quite yet in the Midwest for winter won’t let go.

Hi, my name is Eric Lewis. I am a high school principal and coach from Winston, Missouri.

I was lucky enough to hook up with a group of friends in college back in the late 1980s and we played fastpitch softball together for almost two decades.

I have uniforms in my closet from the St. Joseph Road Runners, THUNDER, National Investors, and Herzog fastpitch teams. We played at different levels throughout our careers – ASA B, A, Major, NAFA and even a little ISC.

Like many of you, we had to travel to play in states such as Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois, North Dakota, South Dakota, California, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and even into Canada.

“Men’s fastpitch is a game where great friends have fun competing from around the country and Canada.”

As my competitive career has dwindled away (ha), I have found myself more concerned with ensuring the survival of fastpitch for my three sons and all the other young men who deserve the chance to play this great game.

Some of the surrounding rural towns in Missouri do play high school boys fastpitch softball, but very few of them do anything with it in the summer time. It is limited to a fall season with 14-18 teams participating. I am the State Tournament Chairman. After the boys graduate there are basically no men’s teams left for them to play for.

I have two young men’s fastpitch teams: Age 10-Under, and 12-Under. We call ourselves the Northwest Royals.

All my kids play baseball. Then once the season is over we switch to fastpitch and travel to whatever post-season tournaments we can find. We have no leagues to play in, so our whole season is limited to late July practices and then a post-season tournament in early August.

PREVIOUS BOY’S NATIONAL TOURNAMENTS
2009- Brandon, South Dakota – ASA Age 10-Under
2009- Mankato, Minnesota – ASA Age 10-Under
2010- Rolla, Missouri – I entered a 10-Under and 12-Under team in the ASA Boy’s National Tournament, but neither division had enough teams in order to offer national tournaments in those age brackets.

This year, we hope to travel to the ASA National Tournament in Mankato, Minnesota from Aug. 5-7 and the NAFA World Series (inaugural youth tournaments) in Rockford, Illinois August 13-14.

To help recruit teams and know where we stand in ALL the different age groups, I started a boy’s and young men’s fastpitch email list last year. It helped the tournament organizers and all the coaches prepare.

Please look at last year’s team list that I created and give me an update.

1. If you need to move up an age group, list the age please.
2. If you have a new team name, please provide it.
3. Yes / No we are planning on going to the ASA Boy’s National Tournament in Mankato.
4. Yes / No we are planning on going to Rockford for the NAFA Boy’s World Series.
5. Our team no longer exists.

HELP EXPAND AND PROMOTE THE CONTACT LIST
Please send me any names or emails of others who should be included on this list. And please forward this email on to others who may want to be included on this mailing list.

Spring is coming and with it, the crack of the bat and the zing of the ball. Let’s play and support boy’s fastpitch softball. The future of the sport depends upon it.

Thanks,
Eric Lewis
Royals Fastpitch
elewis@winston.k12.mo.us

Missouri’s fastpitch leaders already planning for 2011 boy’s national tournaments

Friday, September 10th, 2010


Craig Lewis, 11, dad Eric, and Jacob, 9. The Lewis boys are following in their dad’s footsteps by becoming fastpitch softball pitchers. They helped their Northwest Missouri Royals win back-to-back ASA Boy’s National Championships.
Photo By BOB OTTO at the NAFA World Series in Des Moines and West Des Moines, Iowa.

WINSTON, MO – Some men would just throw up there hands and say, “enough’s, enough, it just isn’t meant to be, I give up.”

But you won’t hear that from Eric Lewis of Winston, Missouri. The father of two fastpitch-playing sons, Craig, 11, and Jacob, 9, is determined to keep the boy’s fastpitch game alive – at least in his part of the country – northwest Missouri.

Though denied participation in the Rolla, Missouri 2010 ASA Boy’s National Tournament in the 10-under and 12-under age divisions because of a lack of teams to offer competition in the two divisions, Lewis is undeterred. He plans on entering his two teams in the ASA 2011 boy’s national in Mankato, Minnesota.

But even though his teams couldn’t play at Rolla in the 2010 event, his boys played none-the-less.

“I stayed home and played a fantastic game between my two boys teams,” said Lewis, who is the principal, athletic director, and boy’s softball coach at Winston High School. “I had nineteen little boys age 12 and under play a scrimmage game. We had uniforms, umpires, PA announcing, etc. Great time was had by all.”

And as for the ASA boy’s national in Mankato next year?

“I am planning on going to Mankato and taking a 10-Under and a 12-Under team. I am also talking to a couple dads about putting a 14-Under team together. And I’m sure my brother-in-law, Greg “Skipper” McQuinn will have at least an 18-Under and 23-Under (this year he had those two and a 16-Under).”


Northwest Implement of Maryville, MO, won the NAFA World Series, Age 18-Under championship by going undefeated with a 4-0 record, Aug. 14-15, in Des Moines and West Des Moines, IA. Greg McQuinn is pictured back row, left.

Lewis added that it’s possible that northwest Missouri will have a team in every division of the ASA boy’s national event.

And he sees a glimmer of hope that he and McQuinn aren’t alone in the push to revive the boy’s and young men’s sides of the sport.

“I saw some of the younger boys division dads and coaches playing fastpitch in Des Moines in the NAFA World Series tournaments,” he said. “They spoke very confidently of taking teams to Mankato (and) some spoke of taking multiple teams.

“Let’s try and reverse the tide and have a tournament with more teams in every age division.”