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On Saturday, July 11th, the ball field at Johnson Park was the site of the 2020 Memphis Tigers 13U Invitational Baseball Tournament, hosted by the City of Memphis and the Memphis Tigers baseball team. Despite this year’s baseball season being dramatically cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic, the event attracted four travel league baseball teams from northeast Missouri, with the Tigers competing at home against the La Plata Bulldogs, Kirksville Redbirds, and Kahoka Sluggers. The round-robin tournament lasted throughout the day and packed the ball field and surrounding areas with spectators.
Players were greeted by the smell of freshly cut grass and the noticeable white gleam of new bases as the Tigers took the field against the Bulldogs for the opening game of the tournament. “About a week ago, this field was in rough shape,” remarked Tigers’ head coach Matt Buford. “The City did a great job getting the field and the park ready for this event.”
As the day progressed, the temperature soared and a colorful city of portable canopies sprang up around the park, offering some much-needed shade as well as a comfortable place for players and their families to relax and observe the action. Meanwhile, visitors lined up all day at the park’s concession stand for refreshments, including freshly-grilled hamburgers and hotdogs.
The Tigers were able to secure a hard fought second place overall finish, closing out the day with a record of 2-1. Trophies made by a local business, Laser Creations, were awarded to the top three teams. Individual medals were also handed out to the players of all four teams The trophies and medals for the tournament were provided by Scotland County Pharmacy and the Law Office of Kevin D Brown
“The boys played some great ball, everybody had a good time, and we were able to get these teams here to play in Memphis,” Buford said “This was a great way to wrap up our season”
Members of the Memphis Tigers in the front row (L to R) are Carter Clatt, Wesley McSparren, Evan Arnold, Camden Forrest, Layne Stott, and Levi Stott. Middle Row (L to R) are Thayden Forrest, Owen Brown, Marcus Smith, Matt Ebeling, Logan Buford, and Jack Siegfried. Back Row (L to R) are Kirk Stott (Coach), Matt Buford (Coach), Doug Siegfried (Coach), and Josh McSparren (Coach).