Vipers win NSA state softball crown

Published 9:31 pm Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The 14U Hampton Roads Vipers won the NSA (National Softball Association) Virginia State Tournament Saturday-Sunday in Salem, going 6-1 through the tournament. The Vipers are, from left, Taylor Telford, Shelby Byrum, Kirstin Kransinski, Taylor Ventura, Alexis Holmstrom, Elizabeth Andrews, Jessie Goldyn, Kellee Dusza, Brianna Sorento, Sydney Wash, Mikala Parker, Skylar Johnston and, not pictured, Leah Cort.

The Hampton Roads Vipers won the 14U National Softball Association (NSA) State Championship over the weekend in Salem going 6-1 against a field of more than 40 top travel softball teams in Virginia.

In a tripleheader of pool play games Saturday, the Vipers rolled through Team Dynasty, RBI Red and the D.C. Shamrocks.

Sydney Wash, a rising freshman who pitched for King’s Fork’s junior varsity team this spring, started in the circle against the Shamrocks and tossed a one-hit shutout as the Vipers won 7-0.

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On Sunday, Wash pitched the Vipers through the quarterfinal win over the Blue Ridge Sudden Impact and the semifinal win over the Virginia Crushers. Going into the championship, the Vipers were the last undefeated team in the tournament.

RBI Blue from Richmond advanced through the loser’s bracket and needed to beat the Vipers in back-to-back games.

The Vipers scored first and led throughout game one. RBI Blue rallied in the seventh inning to win and force another game. It was game seven in two days for the Vipers and more than that for RBI Blue.

RBI Blue fought from behind again to gain a one-run lead in the top of the seventh.

In the bottom of the seventh, the Vipers scored the tying run and had the bases loaded with one out.

Taylor Ventura hit a fly to deep leftfield for a sacrifice fly and the title-winning run.

The Hampton Roads Vipers are based in Virginia Beach with players from Virginia Beach, Elizabeth City, Chesapeake and Suffolk.

The tournament title puts them ranked No. 1 in Virginia by NSA. Out of seven tournaments, the Vipers have three championships, two runner-up finishes and two third-place finishes.

The Vipers will be competing in the PONY (Protecting Our Nation’s Youth) Nationals in Cary, N.C. in the last week of July.