Junior League Softball World Series (photos)

[nggallery id=88] What do Florida, Washington, Ontario, Puerto Rico, Texas, Indiana, Italy, California, Pennsylvania and Guam all have in common?

They all had teams playing in the Junior League Softball World Series this last week at Everest Park, right here in Kirkland!

What do great young athletes, screaming teenage girls, ESPN, swearing parents (from Indiana), hotdogs, sunshine, Terri Fletcher and Hawk all have in common?

These are all things I saw the last 2 days of the Junior League Softball World Series at Everest Park, right here in Kirkland!

Ok, here's the real deal. I was excited about going to see this because it was something new that is not very common to see. That said, I knew it was going to be 14 and 15 year old girls Softball and I had my expectations set accordingly. Well let me just say, my expectations were wrong!

I walked up Friday afternoon when the Latin American team (Puerto Rico) was warming up and saw one of their batting drills. The coach was standing about 20 feet away from one of his players, pitching to her those little plastic golf balls. Ya know the ones with a bunch of holes in them like whiffle balls? He was pulling them out of a big bucket and pitching them about as fast as he could get them out and she was hitting them! I walked over to the fence as close as I could and I think I actually heard myself say….. "Seriously?" Ok, I thought, that’s pretty cool but its still girls softball right? I look to the other side of the field and see another coach hitting fly balls to a group of girls deep in the outfield. The first girl I see steps up and makes a catch and in one smooth motion throws that ball on a straight line all the way back in. Behind her I see the sign that says 200 feet on the fence. At that moment I am sure I heard my self say…. "You gotta be kidding me?" She just threw that ball 150 feet like it was shot out of a canon!

Now, just for reference, I can say that neither baseball nor softball were ever my main sports and the only sport I was ever good enough at to compete at a World class level, was Archery……. (pause for your chuckle to pass)….  but, up until that moment I would have bet the farm that no 14 year old girl could out throw me. I am glad I never had to make that bet, because the farm would now be owned by a young girl from Puerto Rico!

(PS… Archery IS a sport ya know!)

More photos here:   http://www.jeffheinz.com/event-photos/softball-world-series/

Jeff Heinz is a guest contributor for Kirkland Views and a local photographer. Find Jeff on Twitter or see more of his photography at Jeff's flickr site or at www.JeffHeinz.com.