ASHLAND, Ky. — Everybody ready?
It’s a full field of 32 teams for the third annual Amy For Africa Whiffleball Tournament on Aug. 1, including the champions of the past two years.
Kona Krushers (new franchise name) and L-Train (minus one of the train cars and the 2013 champion) are the early co-favorites for the only whiffleball tournament in Ashland.
L-Train was a late entry into the AFA tournament that sent shockwaves through those entered in the field – that is, except for Kona Krushers.
“As John Calipari would say, ‘I like my team,’’’ said Kona Krushers manager/player Matt Fultz.
Also returning is Landon VanKirk, who as a 4-year-old last summer became the youngest player to hit a home run in an AFA Tournament. He will be part of the ADI team that includes his father, Adam, and sports editor Aaron Snyder. A fourth member is still being recruited.
We also welcome back our oldest player – 65-year-old Tony Grossl will be bringing in the Buccos.
Tournament director / groundskeeper Sam Beason has been working on preparations for two “stadiums” on the corner of 29th Street and Blackburn Avenue.
One of them will be a “replica” Fenway Park with a 7½-foot Green Monstah that stretches 50 feet in length.
Four-man teams will follow the same rules as 2014 when you pitch to your own team. There is no running – not even for marathoners Amy and Chris Compston – and the emphasis will be on fun. (Try telling that to Kona Ice and L-Train).
Games will begin at 8 a.m. on Aug. 1 with brackets coming out July 27.
Here is the team roster with captains (a few teams still have to select a name):
1-John Vincent (Who Deys)
2-Chris Compston (AFA)
3-Mark Maynard (Mark’s Mighty Men)
5-Tony Grossl (Buccos)
6-Aaron Snyder (ADI)
7-Don Ashby (Crazy Sox)
8- Tom Roten (Peyton Street Pickers)
9-Dusty Lewis (WashedUp)
10-Chris Slone (Shoeless Average Joes)
12-Matt Fultz (Kona Krushers)
13-Sam Beason (Beason’s Bombers)
14-Derek Runyon (Baseball Bunch)
15-Kelly Daniels (Neuro Nerds)
16-Todd Keelin (Bash Brothers for Christ)
17-Anthony Stidham (Wiffle Wobbles)
18-Jason Philyaw (Radio Rebels)
19-Dicky Tiller (Liberty Lions)
20-Missy Fullerton Murray (Chicks with Kicks)
21-Robbie Barber (Superhero Creamery)
22-Maggie Lawentmann (Bomb Squad)
23-Bill Hornbuckle (Bright1000 Bombers)
24-Chris Mertz (All About that Base)
25-Brock Walter (African Red Rhinos 3.0)
26 Luke Alley (Underdogs 2.o)
27-Patty Lane (RossdaBomb)
28-Marty Justice (Royals)
29-Andy Wesolowski (Landmark Sharks)
30-Luke Watters (Mighty Morphin’ Whiffle Ballers)
31-Kevin Nibert (Rambling Wreck)
32-Rob Lynch (L-Train)