2018 Chicago 16″ Softball – Championship Sunday (Sept.16)

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Updated: September 22, 2018

On Sunday, September 16th we Crowned a NEW Chicago 16″ Softball Champ! The League started all the way back in the first week of May and it took until Mid-September for a Team to hoist the 16” Crown. The picture above provides the spoiler, but a huge Congrats to the now NEW 16” Champs, Team Maione! We’ll recap all the action from the final Sunday of the season below, but first want to give a huge THANK YOU to all the Teams for playing this Summer!

Quickly, for those Playing in their first All Sports Series League.. Here’s what to expect from the weekly Power Rankings.. Each week we’ll take a statistical look at the Teams and Rank them 1-7. You can also count on a Link to the Weekly Highlight Video. Also, if you have ever want to find any info on the League.. Go to Sport Specific Leagues > Chicago 16″ League.. Everything you’d need from Stats to Schedules to Standings etc. will be found there..

Weekly Highlight Video presented by Chicago Trolley & Double Decker Co!

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Championship Sunday Review

ELIMINATION GAME (Losers Bracket):

#2 Team Lessem vs. #4 Team Russell

Neither Team wanted to be in this spot. Both had entered Week 1 of the Playoffs with aspirations of making it to the Championship game. They both had an opportunity in Week 1 of the Playoffs to put themselves in a great position for Championship Sunday, but they both would take tough defeats and drop themselves down into the Loser’s Bracket. Both squads knew it was going to be an uphill battle to claim the 2018 Crown but only one of these teams would advance while the other would see their 2018 campaign come to an end.

Simply put – #2 Team Lessem had too much offensive fire power for Team Russell to handle in this one. Their bats came up huge when it came down to crunch time in this game. Brandon Coan, Alexander Brown and Brett Weiss all had huge days at the plate here. They combined for 5 RBI’s to defeat the #4 Team Russell 9-6. Their defense also came up huge in this one highlighted by a Captain Zach Lessem beauty of a defensive play to help seal the deal. On to the Championship Game and #1 Team Maione they would go.

For Team Russell – it was a great 2018 season. 7-5 regular season record is nothing to cry home about. They were a competitive and fun crew all season long, but they just could not find enough offense in the postseason. Team Russell showed up a little shorthanded into this contest against #2 Team Lessem and it ultimately cost them in the end. Even shorthanded, they were in great spirits entering this ballgame and it showed early on jumping to an early lead. They would hold their lead through the first 3 innings but eventually the short-staffed squad was overtaken but the tough Lessem crew. They don’t need to make any changes going into 2019, they just need to get those clutch hits down the stretch to pull off these elimination wins. Thanks for playing!

 

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME:

#1 Team Maione vs. #2 Team Lessem

The stage was finally set. We would have a new Chicago 16’’ Softball Champion in 2018! The defending back-to-back Champs #3 Team Holzman were unfortunately unable to field a team on Championship Sunday and thus would give way to a brand new Champ. Team Maione would get another opportunity to hoist the coveted Chicago 16’’ Softball crown, needing just 1 more sin to declare themselves 2018 Champions. Team Lessem would need 2 victories in a row to lift the Crown.

#1 Team Maione jumped on #2 Team Lessem with 3 runs right out of the game in the bottom of the first on Captain Frank Maione’s double and Austin Natkin’s round tripper. But Team Lessem battled back, as they did all season long, and before we knew it we were all tied up at 3 going into the bottom of the third. Tyler Max for Team Maione would come up to the plate and break this game wide open when he ripped a double and give Team Maione a solid 6-3 lead. The game stayed at this score line heading into the bottom half of the 5th, where the devastating top of Team Maione’s order of Cobb, Ruth and Lajoie laid in waiting to put a nail in this game’s coffin. But, NO! After a leadoff hit and a bizarre play that would bumble Vin Scully’s tongue, Wenk for Team Lessem wound up shutting down batters 1-5 and would give his crew a solid chance of escaping with this victory in the final 2 innings of play. It was simple now for Team Lessem; seize the momentum and put up a run or two at the very least in the Top half of the 6th. Easier said then done my friends. Two straight hits was just the start they needed, but then Team Lessem would never get the runner past the second sack thanks in part to a nifty 6-5 putout at third. The Fat Lady knew her song was next on the juke. Sure enough, Team Maione limped offensively to the finish line, but an outstanding catch by Eli Rosen crushed all hopes for a comeback in the 7th, which ended with a simple can of corn drifting into the waiting hands of Austin Natkin to end the game. The crowed would go nuts and cheer boisterously for the lads of Team Maione and their first Chicago 16’’ Softball Crown!

For the Runners-Up, Team Lessem, they had a fantastic Playoff-run here. They just couldn’t get past the juggernauts of Team Maione. They finished with 2 guys in the Top-10 for batting this season – Brandon Coan and Alexander Brown both had phenomenal years. These guys need nothing new a year from now. This roster can win with the same group and they just need to get an extra bounce or two take home the Crown. Congrats on a great year and thanks for playing!

Now to the NEW Chicago Summer 16’’ Champs – Team Maione – what a Summer! These guys battled through a Regular Season with a ton of competition to take the #1 seed and then went unbeaten with a 3-0 record in the Playoffs. These guys were offensive juggernauts all season long, scoring a whopping 152 runs during the Regular Season! Austin Natkin finished the season as the leagues HR leader, knocking 9 out of the ball park. Captain Frank Maione meanwhile lead the league in RBI’s (37) and Runs Scored (26). Any time you have two guys who lead the league in almost every offensive hitting category, your team is going to be scary good. Their Offense just puts pressure on the opposition from top to bottom and they showed yet again why they are the best 16″ Team around. They now will set their sights on 2019 and an All Sports Series repeat. But first, the anticipation is palpable for the first ever All Sports Series Championship parade that will take place at 3:30AM in the random alley at 26th and Western on Thursdayish. Congrats again fellas!

 

Thanks to everyone for a great season and we look forward to getting it started once again next May!