The larger club fastpitch programs around the country tend to populate the winner’s circle at major events, but there’s a stand-alone team that moved to the top of the final 14u US Club Rankings for 2017.
The Texas Dirt Divas, based in Liberty, TX, a bit northeast of Houston, had all the right moves this past season, claiming the PGF Premier National Championship with a comeback win over OC Batbusters-Campbell. Adding that with a runner-up finish at Triple Crown’s TC/USA Nationals and a third-place run at Sparkler Juniors gave the independent Dirt Divas all they needed for the top spot.
US Club Rankings bases its 14u rankings on bracket results, with more weight awarded to events with stronger competition.
Pitcher Kaitlyn Dutton threw 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief in the Divas’ win at PGF.
The rest of the top 10 for the final 14u 2017 US Club Rankings are as follows:
2. Tampa Mustangs – TJ (second at Sparkler Juniors)
T3. Georgia Impact – Newland (fifth at PGF Nationals and Sparkler Juniors)
T3. So Cal Choppers – Fausett (co-champions at Boulder IDT)
5. OC Batbusters – Campbell (winners at USSSA Elite Select)
6. Corona Angels – Tyson (co-champions at Boulder IDT)
7. Birmingham Vipers – Standifer (winners at Sparklers Juniors at TC Southeast Nationals)
8. Birmingham Thunderbolts – Barron (second at PGF Nationals)
9. Firecrackers TJ (winners at TC/USA Nationals)
10. Firecrackers – Sewell (third at Sparkler Juniors and TC Southeast Nationals)
“One of the innovative features regarding the US Club Rankings is the ability to find the ‘one off’ teams not part of a larger organization through their on-the-field performance,” said US Clubs Rankings director Alyson Morgenstern. “The Texas Dirt Divas exemplify that quality at the 14U level.”