2006 Cincinnati Major NIT

Benfield/Reece/Shade Rest/AM Las Vegas/Easton wins this USSSA Conference NIT with the most teams entered of any of the Conference NIT’s thus far. The Benfield Boys have got it all together now, and no telling how far this very good team can go. This bunch started to play very well last week in the Smoky’s and it carried right into Cincinnati. I know this for sure, it’s the right time of the year to get it going. Benfield will play one more conference NIT before the Conference Championship and the big one the USSSA Worlds. I believe they have turned the corner and will be a force in the two big tournaments, we will see. I would like to commend the sponsors, manager and coaches who put this 2006 edition of this team together. I know when they lost three very good players some people thought including me, it would take awhile for this team to get back on top. I’m here to tell you this team has not missed much of a beat, that’s for sure. They definitely picked up the right players to replace the ones they lost. Congratulations on winning this NIT and good luck the rest of the way. This is the first time this season that another team has won an NIT with at least one of the big boys entered. Teams have won when Resmondo and Bell were not entered, but none have won with both or one until this one. Great job boys!

Second place went to Bell Corp/Taylor/Belcher/Easton who have fallen on hard times these last two weeks. This one was probably hard to play in because of the news the team learned on Saturday morning about the tragic death of one of their sponsors Bill Taylor. I am not making any excuses that this is the reason they lost this weekend, but I’m sure it was on all their minds. The Bell boys were coming off a loss at the Smoky and it carried into Cincy. This is the first time the Bell team has lost back to back weekends. They will get a chance to get back on track in Detroit the first weekend in August in the last Conference NIT of the season. We will see what happens there. Good luck in Detroit.

Third place went to Watanabe/TPS, who is one of the very good lower class A teams. Make no mistake they have some people who know how to win. I also know it was a very good showing in this one, and teams better look out in the Class A Worlds with this bunch. I will tell you this, if you don’t play your best against this team you’re going to get beat. Great job and good luck down the road.

Fourth place went to a team who just gets it done in these NIIT’s every time they’re entered. Northwest Pipe/Bud Light/3N2/Easton just finds a way to finish in the money most of the time. Larry gets a lot out of his players, and that is why they are usually in the top 4 when the tournaments are over. Great job in this one and good luck the rest of the way.

I would like to commend Jim Wessel on a great job he and his staff did putting this NIT together. I know this, somebody did their homework getting 43 teams to play. This is the biggest number of teams in a Super NIT in a long, long time. This proves one thing, that if you do your work the teams will come out. I have said all season long, it’s great to see these B, C and D teams get in these Super NIT’s to see the best teams, players and what it takes to play at the next level. Congratulations to all the B,C and D teams who have made the USSSA Conference NIT’s a success all season long. Good luck in your class and your worlds. Thanks again to the man Jim McCarron for keeping us posted on the Cincy tournament.