News Sports

NASA Tournament

PCI’s LA Legends team takes first in seniors competition

News Sportswriter

The 2019 Native American Softball Association (NASA) Tournament is in the books.
Twenty-one teams from the Poarch Creek Indians competed in the tournament which was held last weekend on the Seminole Reservation located in Dania Beach, Fla.
“We had a great showing for the tournament,” PCI Sports Coordinator Jake McGhee said. “We were able to bring home some trophies and everyone had a great time.”
The NASA Tournament is played once a year on the reservation of a Southeastern tribe. The Seminole tribe hosted this year’s tournament and welcomed over 75 softball teams from neighboring tribes throughout the Southeast.
The teams, made up of players 18 years old and above, battled for first-place honors in a friendly adult softball tournament.
As the tournament got underway last Thursday, August 1, the rain began to pound away in South Florida.
“We had rain every day of the tournament,” said McGhee. “The rain made for the worst field conditions I have ever seen.”
The softball fields became a sloppy, muddy mess. Even with the horrible conditions, the tournament continued. Players became almost unrecognizable with red mud covering their entire bodies and smiles covering their faces.
The dreary weather wasn’t the only factor that played havoc with the tournament.
Large reptiles called wild iguanas delayed some games with their presence in the outfield. Players created fun from the unwelcome additions to the team and calmly chased the creatures away.
The five teams that placed in the tournament were; Sneaky Creek, second place; Walkoff Warriors, third place; Southern Natives, third place; PCI Lady Legends, third place, and PCI’s LA Legends took home the first-place prize in men’s senior competition.
“The guys who make up the LA Legends are legends themselves,” McGhee said. “Those guys have been playing together in Native American softball tournaments for at least 30 years.”
McGhee explained that players such as Mal McGhee have been members of the Legends team since day one. Younger players have taken over certain spots on the team, but McGhee stressed that most of the men on the team have had longer playing careers than most professional athletes.
With the conclusion of the tournament, teams will retire until next year’s competition. Dates and locations will be announced later.