The Fort Lee Men’s Softball team had a very good showing at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center Softball Tournament June 2, according to coach Kennith Snyder. After three close victories in round-robin competition, Fort Lee bested the Jays, Naval Station Storm and Walter Reed to enter the elimination round.
“All three games were close, but our team showed tremendous heart and determination,” said Snyder. “Clutch hitting and solid defense were keys to victory in all the games.”
James Ritch and Andre James delivered timely home runs to help the team to victory. Calvin Chambliss led Fort Lee in hitting during the round-robin. In the single-elimination round, Fort Lee again faced Walter Reed. Trailing 2-0 at the bottom of the first inning, Walter Reed retaliated with a commanding 9-2 lead into the third inning. Fort Lee shut their opponents’ offense down completely after that rally. Snyder recorded a three-run homer to close the gap to 9-5 at the top of the fourth, and James again hit a clutch homer to bring the team back into the game. Going into the top of the seventh, Fort Lee fought to tie up the game. With bases loaded and no outs, the team could only push across one run to take a 10-9 lead. Facing the heart of the Walter Reed lineup, Fort Lee found themselves on the losing end of a bases-loaded, one out situation. Walter Reed scored the two runs needed to defeat Fort Lee and continue to the championship.
“Even though Fort Lee didn’t come home with the gold, it showed that we will be a team to be dealt with in future competitions,” said Snyder.
The team will be playing in local tournaments in preparation for the National Softball Association Military World Series, scheduled July 19-21.