Title town term in UC has new softball definition

Title town term in UC has new softball definition
Union City’s status as title town isn’t limited to just basketball anymore.
The city will oversee the crowning of four Babe Ruth League softball state champions in four different age groups after state tournaments set to be held at Graham Park July 3-6.
On that holiday weekend, champions will be crowned in UC in the 14-and-under, 12-and-under, 10-and-under and 8-and-under age divisions. The titleists will also clinch a spot in the Babe Ruth League’s Southeast Regional.
“We’re glad to have the tournaments coming to town,” Union City Turf Management Director Chris Crockett said. “I thought with the facilities we have that we were very deserving to host at least one tournament.
“As it turns out, we were the only applicants to put in for the tournaments that had the facilities to make it happen.”
On the field, Babe Ruth League softball differs a bit from the Amateur Softball Association. Most of the teams coming to Union City are comprised of recreational league All-Star teams, whereas many ASA teams travel every weekend to take part in invitational tournaments.
There is also a difference in the pitching rule as Babe Ruth pitchers are required to have just one foot on the rubber when they start their motion to the plate.
Union City will have a representative in three of the four double-elimination tournaments with locals not represented in the 12-and-under division.
In 8-and-under play, UC will debut July 3 against Lake County at 6 p.m. The 10-and-under Union City All-Stars will take on Trezevant at the aforementioned time.
Meanwhile, in 14-and-under play, the fireworks will start for UC’s team on July 4 against Medina at 11 a.m.
Joining UC, Trezevant, Medina and Lake County in the tournament play will be Lewisburg, Smokey Mountain, Bradford, Dresden and North Gibson County.
One out-of-area team will play in each tournament with Lewisburg fielding teams in both the 8-under and 10-under division, while Smokey Mountain will take part in the 12-and-under and 14-and-under tournaments.
Local hotels are expected to see a spike in business thanks to the out-of-towners, while Union City restaurants may enjoy a little more business, as well.
“It is hard to measure what type of impact an event like this will have on the community beforehand,” Obion County Chamber of Commerce Business Development Director Pat Fligor said. “Still, we will benefit from bringing people into the community and them making purchases.”
Sports reporter Kenneth Coker can be contacted by e-mail at kcoker@ucmessenger.com.

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