8-13-2011 ESPN All American Game


SPY had planned to run this story on Wednesday, one the eve of the Premier Girls Fastpitch tournament – in which a  number of the players from the ESPN Rise/Under Armour All American game not only played but starred. The All Star game was broadcast again by ESPN tonight – thoroughly enjoyable.


The All Star game followed a  broadcast of the Little League Senior Girls championship match between a team from Delaware and a team from Puerto Rico – a further manifestation of ESPN’s increasing commitment to girls fastpitch softball.


The following is ESPN Rise’s game summary:


Fans who spilled out of the stands at the ESPN Wide World of Sports were treated to some bonus softball at the 2011 Under Armour All-America Game on Tuesday. After all, what else would you expect from teams comprised of the nation’s best?

Sara Driesenga was named MVP after lacing a bases-loaded, walk-off double off the left field fence to cap a three-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning in a 6-5 win for Team Swagger.

“[The MVP] could have gone to anybody because this was truly a team effort,” said Driesenga, who also pitched the final two innings to earn the win. “It’s just an honor to be here with the 30 best players in the nation.”

Although cliche, there was some truth to the “total team effort” statement on this day. Down 2-0 in the bottom of the fifth, Team Swagger standouts Lauren Chamberlain and Kylee Lahners blasted back-to-back home runs that swung momentum.

“I came up to the plate thinking, ‘Wow, the only way to follow [Chamberlain’s home run] is to just hit another one,'” Lahners said. “So I went up there and waited for my pitch, got my pitch and put a good swing on it.”

Ally Carda, the pitcher for Team Hype who surrendered the two home runs, swung it back to her team’s favor by taking two bases after an attempted pick-off throw went awry. She scored from third on an RBI single by Delaney Guy.

Team Hype took its 3-2 lead into the bottom of the seventh, when Kelsi Jones played the role of savior with a one-out single that scored Lahners to tie the game.

After Danielle Henderson was hit in the ankle by a pitch, Team Swagger suddenly had a golden opportunity to win the game in regulation with the bases loaded and only one out. But Corrin Genovese flashed some leather at second for Team Hype, snaring the potentially game-winning line drive and doubling off the runner at first base for an unassisted inning-ending double play. 

Playing by international tie-breaking rules (each extra inning starts with a runner on second base), the game progressed to the ninth inning, where scoring suddenly became en vogue.

Team Hype opened the inning with two runs in the top half, highlighted by a two-out RBI single by Jessica Damico, who went 2-for-4 on the day. Damico and Swagger’s Janie Takeda, who went 2-for-3, were the only players with multiple hits.

Facing a two-run deficit for the second time in the game, Team Swagger responded in the bottom of the ninth.

After a hit by Takeda and a walk by Jones, A.J. Andrews reached on an error to load the bases with only one out. Down 5-4, Driesenga ended the game with her drive to left. Jones, who hit the game-tying RBI single to force extra innings, scored the winning run.

“After we fell behind, you still saw smiles on the girls faces, and that’s the key” said Leah O’Brien Amico, coach of Team Swagger. “A lot of times, if you’re wearing that negative emotion it will pull you down. It’s fun to be on the winning side. You play this game to have fun but obviously we’re all competitors and it’s always nice to get that W.”

The game aired at 7 p.m. ET Saturday on ESPNU.

Under Armour All-America Softball Game Roster

 Name  Pos  High School (City/State)  Club  College Signed  
 Ayanna Andrews       OF       Countryside (Oldsmar, Fla.)  Team FLA  LSU  
 Alyssa Bache  P  East Lake (Clearwater, Fla.)  Gold Coast Hurricanes  Florida  
 Allison Brown  INF  Los Alamitos (Los Alamitos, Calif.)  So Cal Athletics  Ole Miss  
 Allyson Carda  P/1B  Pleasant Grove (Elk Grove, Calif.)  Lady Magic 18G  UCLA  
 Bailey Castro  3B  American Heritage (Pembroke Pines, Fla.)  Gold Coast Hurricanes  Florida  
 Bailey Chalmers  C/1B  Montgomery (Montgomery, Tex.)  Texas Glory Gold  Baylor  
 Lauren Chamberlain  INF  El Toro (Trabuco Hills, Calif)  Worth Firecrackers  Oklahoma  
 Brittany Clopton  OF  Montgomery (Montgomery, Tex.)  Impact Gold  Texas A&M  
 Cheyenne Cordes  SS  Angelo Rodriguez (Farifield, Calif.)  Lady Magic  Cal Berkeley  
 Jessica Damico  INF  Pacifc (Gray Summit, Missouri)  St Louis Chaos  Florida  
  Shelby Davis  OF  Goddard (Goddard, Kans.)  Wichita Mustangs  Oklahoma State  
  Sara Driesenga  P/INF  Hudsonville (Hudsonville, Mich.)  Beverly Bandits  Michigan  
 Mattie Fowler  UTIL.  Canyon del Oro (Tuscon, Ariz.)  AZ Desert Thunder  Nebraska  
 Kiara Garcia  SS  Angelo Rodriguez (Fairfield, Calif.)  Lady Magic  Oregon State  
 Lauren Gaskill  SS  Rancocas Valley Regional (Mount Holly, N.J.)  Rock Gold  Virginia Tech  
 Corrin Genovese  SS  Williamsville North (East Amherst, N.Y.)  Jersey Intensity Gold  Missouri  
 Rachel Gillen  P/OF    Archemore Academy (Willmington, Del.)  Gold Coast Hurricanes  Virginia  
  Delaney Guy  SS  Klein Oak (Tomball, Tex.)  Impact Gold  Baylor  
  Lauren Haeger  P/1B  Deer Valley (Phoenix, Ariz.)  AZ Hotshots Gold  Florida  
 Danae Hays  SS  Mortimer Jordan (Morris, Ala.)  Gold Coast Hurricanes  Auburn  
 Danielle Henderson  3B  Sheldon (Elk Grove, Calif.)  Lady Magic 18G  Cal Berkeley  
 Kelsi Jones  CF  Carmel (Carmel, Ind.)  Illinois Southern Force  Missouri  
 Leslie Jury  P/1B  JL Mann (Anderson, S.C.)  Gold Coast Hurricanes  Alabama  
 Kylee Lahners  2B  Laguna Hills (Laguna Hills, Calif.)  Worth Firecrackers       Washington  
  Amy Letourneau  1B/P  Santa Margarita Cath (Laguna Niguel, Calif.)  Explosion Gold  Northwestern  
 Callie Parsons  OF  Pryor (Pryor, Okla.)  Wichita Mustangs  Oklahoma  
 Logan Spaw  C/OF  Blue Springs South (Blue Springs, Missouri)  KC Zephyrs  Virginia Tech  
 Lauren Sweet  C  Santiago (Corona, Calif.)  Courage  Michigan  
 Janette Takeda  OF  El Dorado (Placentia, Calif.)  OC Batbusters 18G  Oregon  
 Cassidy Whidden  C  St Stephens Episcopal (Parrish, Fla.)  NJ Intensity  Notre Dame  
 Leah O’Brien-Amico    3X Olympic Gold Medalist      
 Lauren Lappin    Olympic Silver Medalist (Beijing)  USSSA Pride Pro    
 Jenn Sailing    Canadian National Team  USSSA Pride Pro    
 Eileen Canney    2010 USA National Team  Japanese Pro League    
 Jackie Traina    Led Alabama to 2011 College World Series  2010 UA All American    
 Jolene Henderson    Led Cal to 2011 College World Series  2009 UA All American    

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