George Ferguson Havre Daily News sports editor email@example.com
For one more weekend this summer the Sixth Avenue Memorial Softball Field will come alive with top-notch softball action. Starting tonight at 9, Havre will be the sight of the 2008 Montana ASA Men's Fastpitch Softball State Tournament. The tourney will run tonight, all day on Saturday, and conclude on Sunday evening, and it will feature five teams, including three Havre teams, and the two-time defending state champions, which happen to hail from Havre as well. Looking to capture a remarkable third straight state title is Havre's Gallery Lounge. The team, with former Havre great and current Kalispell pitcher Gary Joe Evans, has won two dramatic state titles, and with Evans back in the circle, is certainly the favorite to do so again this weekend in Havre. But a pair of other Havre teams could push the Gallery this weekend. Taco Johns is led by longtime veteran pitcher John Shennum, who has logged countless state tournament innings. And Master Sports, with another Havre veteran, Andy Smith, as well as Matt Kretchmer, is another team who could vie for the state championship over the next three days. As for visiting teams, interest in mens fastpitch in Montana has seemed to dwindle this season, but that won't stop this weekend's tourney form being every bit as competitive as always. Two Missoula teams are in the field, led by the Silver Dollar. The Silver Dollar has been a staple at the state tournament over the years, and it always brings quality pitching. The final team in the field is the Silver Slipper, also form Missoula. As for the event's schedule, the tournament will start with a round-robin format to seed teams for a single-elimination tourney on Sunday. There will be one game tonight, followed by seven games on Saturday. Sunday's tournament gets under way 9 a.m. and the championship game is slated to begin at 3 p.m. The 2008 state men's fastpitch tourney kicks off tonight with the first game between Gallery Lounge and Master Sports at 9, and all the action will take place at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Softball Field.