By Petty Officer 2nd Class Steven L. ShepardAugust 17, 2009
PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. Aca,!" The Presidio of Monterey (POM) Intramural Softball completed their playoff tournament on July 24 with a championship game between teams from the Navy and Marines. After the last pitch the Navy, who also finished the regular season in first place, was victorious by a score of 14-11.
An award ceremony was held immediately following the conclusion of the game. Players on both teams were presented individual medals and first and second place trophies were given to the teams. The medals were handed out by the POM Director of Morale Welfare and Recreation Bob Emmanuel.
The Most Valuable Player trophy was awarded to Navy's Brian Kemper who went 3-4, with one home run, two doubles, and three RBI. Kemper was modest about his achievement after the game and gave credit to his teammates for the win.
"It was a group effort," said Kemper."We played a tough team today and it was very close, everyone was hitting the ball."
Price Fitness Center Facility Manager Sports Director Herb Beckett, who presided over the trophy ceremony, noted that although all 13 teams from the regular season participated in the double elimination playoff tournament, he felt that the two best teams had made it to the championship game.
"It was a great way to finish the season," said Beckett."We had teams from all branches of the military represented, it was co-ed, and they displayed wonderful sportsmanship throughout the season. Besides that it was a lot of fun."
Beckett pointed out that there was also a team of DoD Civilian employees playing in this year's softball league.
The Navy team finished the regular season in first place with a nearly perfect 12-1 record, their only loss was to the DOA-1 team. Navy's Christopher Bryant, who missed the final game due to injury, commented after the regular season, "our team this year was awesome and we played extremely well."
The Marines, who started off the regular season strong, finished in the middle of the pack at 6th place with a 7-5-1 record due to the loss of a few key players for most of the season. They seemed to be in prime form for the playoffs though as they racked up 68 runs in their first three games. Unfortunately on that third game they came up against a Navy team with an equally impressive offense and the Marines were outscored 23-21, sending them to the loser's bracket of the double elimination tournament.
The two teams met again for the Championship Game, and while the run tally was not quite as high, the score stayed close throughout the six and half innings.
The Marines got themselves on the scoreboard first, getting three runs on a two out rally in the first inning. The Navy tied it up in the bottom half of the inning with two base hits and a long line-drive home run from MVP Kemper.
The Navy took a 9-5 lead after scoring six runs in the second inning but the Marines battled back and retook the lead during the top of the sixth.
Down 9 to 11 with only two innings left to bat, the Navy team and the fans that had come out to watch them seemed to get a little nervous. This was a position they were not used to being in--the Navy had been winning games in the earlier rounds by margins of 20 and more runs.
Like true champions though the Navy rose to the occasion and got the necessary hits, including a home run shot by Ryan Hodler and ended the inning with a 14-11 lead.
The Marines were held scoreless during the top of the seventh and the celebration began for a Navy team that had been eying that first place trophy since day one of the season.
Marine coach Lucas Brewer best summed up what the opponents of the Navy softball team had been feeling all year long.
"We gave it our all," explained Brewer. "It just wasn't enough to beat the Navy."