OC Bombers are champions

Fast pitch 16U travel team wins World Series Tourney

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  • The OC Bombers made it through the hot Florida July weather to win the U16 USSSA World Series Tournament.

  • Photos provided Goshen's Jenny Lawless, #15, had the game-winning hit in the semi-final game of the U16 World Series Tournament.

  • There is joy on the faces of the champions.

  • Number 1!

  • Front, Jayne Celano, second base, and West Milford’s Courtney Cienki, pitcher, take a break at the USSSA World Series in Orlando.

  • From left, the champion Orange County Bombers: Coach Johnny Marchese, head coach Elena Fogg, Jayna Celano, Tara Danilak, Alex Fogg, Jayda Roman, Jenny Lawless, Maddie Pacione, Meghan Doyle, Sara Duffy, Gianna Scarzafava, Casey McKnight, Paige Sarvis, Kristen Cienki, Courtney Cienki and Coach Billy Fogg.

The Orange County Bombers, a 16U fast pitch softball team with members mostly from throughout Orange County, won the 16U-B USSSA (United States Specialty Sports Association) Fast Pitch World Series Tournament in Orlando, Florida.

The tournament was held from July 10 to 16 and was hosted by Osceola County and the ESPN Wide World of Sports. Teams came from all over the United States, and some from as far away as Venezuela and Canada. Twenty-one teams participated in the 16U age group in the tournament.

The Bombers started off slowly, losing 4-0 to the Loudoun Inferno in their opening game. A quick team meeting before their next game helped to right the ship, and it would prove to be the last loss for the Bombers in the tournament. They were dominant in their next two pool games, beating the St. Louis Pirates and Indiana Illusion 8-0 in both games. The Bombers finished 2-1 in pool play and claimed the #2 seed from their pool and then began tournament play, a double elimination affair where if you lose twice, you go home.

The Bombers stayed in the winner's bracket, beating the West Ga. Express 3-2, the BlastersX - Illinois 8-3, and the Long Island Chiefs Select 10-9.

In their semi-final against the Hickory Hornets - Maryland, Goshen's Jenny Lawless doubled home Alex Fogg with the game-winning run, giving the Bombers a 3-2 win and sending them to the championship game.

They faced the Long Island Chiefs Select in the final, but fell behind 5-1. It looked bleak until the Bombers began mounting a comeback. Key hits by Tara Danilak, Jayna Celano, Jayda Roman, Casey McKnight and Maddie Pacione helped give the Bombers the lead.

From there, the Bombers' pitching again proved to be the difference - the Bombers liberally used several pitchers while the Chiefs stayed with only one. Maddie Pacione got the final out and the Bombers won 8-6 to take the championship.

Bombers' Manager Elena Fogg of Warwick credited her pitching staff for being able to survive the heat and humidity of Orlando and help bring home the trophy.

Last year, the team competed in the World Series, held at Myrtle Beach, as a 14U team, and finished third. One big difference: the pitchers.

"Last year we had three pitchers; this year we had six pitchers," said Fogg. "It made a difference with all the games and the heat."

Courtney Cienki of West Milford, N.J., was selected most valuable player by the team's opponent in the finals, the Long Island Chiefs Select.

The USSSA Fast Pitch program used a five-game guarantee format in its World Series Tournament. Teams were seeded into pools based on their USSSA ranking points and played a round robin. All teams were seeded into a double elimination championship bracket following pool play.

Orange County Bombers Roster
Jayna Celano - Goshen
Courtney Cienki - West Milford, N.J.
Kristen Cienki - West Milford, N.J.
Tara Danilak - Chester
Meghan Doyle - Goshen
Sara Duffy - Delaware Valley, PA
Alex Fogg, Warwick
Jenny Lawless - Goshen
Casey McKnight - Newburgh
Maddison Pacione - Newburgh
Jayda Roman - Minisink
Paige Sarvis - New Paltz
Gianna Scarzafava, Pine Bush
Michaela Calandra - Warwick (did not attend)
Coaches Elena Fogg, Bill Fogg and John Marchese

The Orange County Bombers' Road to the Championship
Bracket play
Game 1 - OC Bombers 3, Ga Express 2
Game 2 - OC Bombers 8, Blasterx - Illinois 3
Game 3 - OC Bombers 10, Long Island Chief Select 9
Game 4 - OC Bombers 3, Hickory Hornets - MD 2
Championship Game - OC Bombers 8, L.I. Chief Select 6

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