552nd CMS crowned 2007 Softball Champions

Pitcher Mark Upchurch, 552nd Maintenance Squadron, delivers a pitch in the first inning during the 2007 base championship against the 34th Combat Communications Squadron Aug. 17. The 552nd MXS won the game 19-9. (Air Force photo by John E. Banks)

Pitcher Mark Upchurch, 552nd Maintenance Squadron, delivers a pitch in the first inning during the 2007 base championship against the 34th Combat Communications Squadron Aug. 17. The 552nd MXS won the game 19-9. (Air Force photo by John E. Banks)

TINKER AIR FORCE BASE -- A one-game match between the small and large squadron champions Aug. 17 determined the kings of the softball diamond.
   This small squadron champion 552nd Maintenance Squadron Bulldogs came out victorious, defeating the 34th Combat Communications Squadron, the large squadron champion, 19-9 at the Tinker Sports Complex.
   The game got off to a roaring start with 552nd CMS power hitters Steve Voice, James Gasaway and Mark Upchurch hitting towering home runs over the centerfield fence in the first inning to give their team a 5-2 advantage.
   "Let's go, we need to put the pressure on these guys with our hitting. Hit the ball hard and down and we will succeed tonight," said Gasaway.
   Down 10-3, the 34th CCS side was undaunted as they entered the third inning. Their six-run  onslaught was led by Aaron Jones, whose monstrous three-run home run landed nearly on Southeast 29th Street outside of the Tinker Sports Complex.
   "We are back in now big time," said Jones.
   As the teams entered the fourth inning, each was confident in their ability to take the championship. But it was the Bulldogs of the 552nd MXS who took full advantage of their opportunities and held their opponent scoreless in the top half of the inning.
   In their half of the inning, every member of the Bulldogs lineup contributed to the team's rally. Consecutive run-scoring singles by Voice and Gasaway got things started.
   Upchurch then stroked a two-run triple into deep left centerfield, making the score 13-9 with no outs. Michael Lear, Mike Rosenthal, Jon Lentz, Nick Daniello and Justin Paul each had run-scoring singles, making the final score 19-9. The run-rule victory gave the 552nd MXS their fifth consecutive championship.
   The hitting heroes for the 552nd MXS were Gasaway who went 3-for-3, with two home runs, a double and four RBIs, and Upchurch, who was 3-for-3 with a home run, a triple, a single and four RBIs.
   The 34th CCS was led by Jones, who was 2-for-3 with two home runs and five RBIs. 

                       1 2 3 4  R   H   E
34th CCS     2 1 6 0  9   15  3
552nd MXS  5 4 0 9  19 21  2