Flash Staff Report
STEPHENVILLE (June 16, 2017) — Five Stephenville Sox teams will be among the 26 competing in three age divisions in this weekend’s Baseball on The Bosque summer tournament.
There are brackets based on age for 14U, 11U and the combination of 9U and 10U into one. The 9-10U and 11U tournaments are at Stephenville City Park and the 14U event is being played at James T. Young Field behind Stephenville High School. Games begin at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and continue through approximately 9 p.m. Saturday and 7:30 p.m. Sunday.
The tournament may only be roughly half the size of the spring tournament organized by the Stephenville Sox baseball organization, but Sox manager Keith Philips says it has grown tremendously in three short years.
“It’s the third year we’ve done this, and I remember the first year we only had six teams in one age division. Now we have 26 teams in three divisions, so it’s growing fast,” said Philips. “Our chamber of commerce does a wonderful job welcoming our visiting teams and families and we have great local restaurants and hotels for them to choose from. I think a big part of the attraction to this tournament, too, is that people can have all those conveniences right here in more of a country town while getting out of the hustle and bustle of places like the Metroplex or other cities where most of these types of tournaments are played.”
Philips knows very well where most of them are played because Sox teams have been in many of them through the years. They have won more than their fair share, too, and that is true again in 2017.
The 14U Sox have won or been named the No. 1 seed in three of five tournaments including its title at the Texas State Championships in Burleson. The 10U team won a United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) tournament.
“I don’t have all the tournament titles and achievements right on the tip of my tongue,” said Philps, who took pause from his day job Friday to for a phone interview with The Flash Today. “But I can tell you we have had various teams from different age groups who have been successful this year, winning tournaments and competing real well.”
In addition to the opportunity for local kids to perform in their home town, the Baseball on the Bosque tournaments provide a weekend-long economic swoon for the City of Stephenville. Philips says the 26 teams should average 11 players each. Visiting are 21 teams, or roughly 221 players, and Philips has been told to calculate expected total visitors at a 4-to-1 ratio with families coming to Stephenville to watch their favorite budding baseball stars. That translates to almost 900 people visiting from out of town with more than 200 locals also getting out and about purchasing things such as food and beverages, ice, hotel rooms, fuel and more.
“We really appreciate the City of Stephenville and the chamber of commerce and our business community for stepping up and being such great partners for this,” said Phiips. “The people here in Stephenville are so great, that to be honest, I don’t think they have to do anything special for us. All they have to be is their every day selves and its exactly what visitors hope to find when the get here.”