SIKESTON -- Starting tomorrow, Sikeston is set to host the 10-and-under and 14-and-under divisions of the 2010 Babe Ruth Midwest Plains Regional Softball Tournament.
"We're really excited to have the tournament here," tournament coordinator and operations manager for Sikeston softball, Glen Cantrell said. "It's the first time Sikeston has hosted this tournament and to my knowledge we haven't had the 10-and-under and 14-and-under regional tournaments this close to Southeast Missouri before."
Consisting of teams from Missouri, Kansas and Colorado both age groups will play all weekend with things wrapping up with the final two teams in the tournament playing for the championship.
Opening ceremonies will begin at 5:30 p.m. Thursday with play starting at 6:15 p.m. at the south end softball fields in the Sikeston Area Youth Baseball complex. Sikeston will have a team playing in both age groups with the regional host automatically awarded a bid.
Both divisions will consist of seven teams with the top six teams in pool play advancing to a double elimination tournament.
Admission to the events will be $8 for a one day pass or $25 for all four days.
Cantrell said hosting regionals came as a pleasant surprise in the town's pursuit of a post-season tournament.
"I was originally seeking trying to get a state tournament in Sikeston and they said, 'we have the regionals available, would you like to do it?'" he said. "After talking to a couple a people we said, yeah absolutely.
"We were just asking for state, but instead we got a nice, big regional tournament."
With proceeds going back in to the Sikeston softball program, Cantrell said this event will be a great chance to earn funds with the hopes of updating facilities and equipment.
"I played ball in Sikeston when I was a kid all the way up through Junior Babe Ruth and one of the things I think we're recognizing is a lot of our equipment and facilities are looking kind of old," he said.
"We're using this tournament as a fundraiser for our softball program so that we can buy new scoreboards and we can look at buying some fencing and doing some different things to our field to upgrade them and make them look better."
The Sikeston 10U squad will take on Mineral Area at 6:15 p.m. Thursday on the Rookie League field while the Sikeston 14U squad will take on Rose Hill, Kan., at 8 p.m. on the American League field.
14U Pool Play
Rose Hill, Kan. v. Fountain Valley, Col. (American)
Sikeston v. Buhler, Kan. (American)
Osawatomie, Kan. v. Wellington, Kan. (Musial)
Cherry Creek, Col. v. Fountain Valley, Col. (American)
Fountain Valley, Col. v. Sikeston (Musial)
Wellington, Kan. v. Buhler, Kan. (American)
Buhler, Kan. v. Rose Hill, Kan. (Musial)
Osawatomie, Kan. v. Cherry Creek, Col. (American)
Rose Hill, Kan. v. Sikeston (American)
Wellington, Kan. v. Cherry Creek, Col. (American)
Buhler, Kan. v. Fountain Valley, Col. (Musial)
Sikeston v. Osawatomie, Kan. (American)
10U Pool Play
Mineral Area v. Sikeston (Rookie)
Rose Hill, Kan. v. Heartland (Musial)
Independence, Kan. v. Monett (Rookie)
Heartland v. Santa Fe, Col. (Musial)
Sikeston v. Rose Hill, Kan. (Rookie)
Santa Fe, Col. v. Independence, Kan. (Rookie)
Monett v. Mineral Area (Rookie)
Sikeston v. Independence, Kan. (Rookie)
Rose Hill, Kan. v. Santa Fe, Col. (Musial)
Monett v. Sikeston (Rookie)
Mineral Area v. Heartland (Musial)
Independence, Kan. v. Mineral Area (Rookie)