Original article by Julia Daniels
Published: Jul. 11, 2020 at 9:51 PM CDT
PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG) -Saturday wrapped up the first of two weeks of the USFA Softball World Series at the Panama City Beach Sports Complex.
The tournament consisted of over 70 8U, 10U, and 12U teams from all over the United States. One of USFA's tournament directors, Robert Guerrero, said that of all the obstacles the world series has faced, including Hurricane Michael, adjusting to the covid-19 pandemic has been the most out of ordinary.
“The biggest thing is, some teams have been able to play, and some teams have not. There’s some teams here, and these are their first games of the year. The first pitches they have thrown all season have been in Panama City Beach, so that has been unique because of what comes with that. I think the biggest thing this week is flexibility. We did have some teams that were forced to cancel due to the situation that we are dealing with. They cancelled, literally, the day before the tournament started,” said Guerrero.
Monday, 14U, 16U, AND 18U softball teams will head down to compete in the older tournament of the World Series.
Panama City Beach's own 12U Florida Elite coach, Katie Lopes, said playing at home has been a blessing.
“The girls are so pumped to play at a home field advantage because their friends and family can come watch. It’s a big help for us when we have local help and to have friends and family in the stands. It’s crazy to have different competition because some of the tournaments I’ve seen the same stuff over and over. It’s nice to play people that we are not familiar with that we don’t know anything about,” said Lopes.
Lopes also said that Florida Elite doesn’t have any more summer tournaments lined up, but they will be hosting tryouts next week for next year’s team.
Copyright 2020 WJHG. All rights reserved.
About Panama City Beach
Panama City Beach is situated on 27 miles of sugar-white sand beaches bordering clear, emerald-green waters where the Gulf of Mexico and St. Andrew Bay converge. With 320 days of sunshine annually and attractions such as St. Andrews State Park and Pier Park, the region has long been favored by travelers seeking an affordable beach vacation with year-round offerings for families, couples, groups and adventure-seekers. These include championship golf courses, spas, sporting events, award-winning dining and diverse recreational activities. In addition, Panama City Beach’s Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport offers non-stop flights on Delta Airlines, Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. For more information, call 850-233-5070 or visit the official website of the Panama City Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau at www.visitpanamacitybeach.com. Stay connected with Panama City Beach on Twitter (@Visit_PCB), Instagram (@Visit_PCB) and Facebook (@VisitPanamaCityBeach).
About Visit Panama City Beach
Visit Panama City Beach is the official destination marketing organization for Panama City Beach, Florida. The award-winning organization has earned industry accreditation (DMAP) from Destinations International, the world’s leading authority in destination marketing, and exists to drive economic opportunity, job creation, community sustainability and quality of life for its residents through marketing, promotion and stewardship of the destination’s REAL.FUN.BEACH. brand and attributes, tourism development, special event production, and managing beach re-nourishment and maintenance programs.
Gina Stouffer / Tori Beth Black Jayna Leach / Lacee Rudd
Lou Hammond Group Panama City Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau
843.408.4360 / 843.647.7389 850.233.5070 / 850.233.5070