‘Light the fuse on cancer’


SC Xplosion competes in Pink Out tournament

By Derik Vanderford - dvanderford@civitasmedia.com



Courtesy photo South Carolina Xplosion travel softball team members are, left to right, (front) Precious Rice, Savannah Fowler, Morgan Chesnut, Morgan Gilmore, (back) Haleigh Burgess, Abby Benfield, Averie Lewis, Laken Lewis, Orianna Stewart, Caylee Lawson and Janiyah Glenn.


CHEROKEE, N.C. — A travel softball team based in Union delivered an impressive performance during a tournament over the weekend while creating breast cancer awareness.

The Union-based non-profit 10U fast-pitch travel softball team known as SC Xplosion competed in a Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Out tournament — part of the Top Gun Series — in Cherokee, N.C. on Saturday.

The team spent 11 hours at the ball field on Saturday, playing five games.

“Memories were most definitely made Saturday!” said Nikki Burgess, who launched the team over the summer, along with her husband, Coach Billy Burgess. “We look forward to this type of tournament because it supports such a great cause, something that is close to us all.”

The other coaches of the team are Mark Lawson and Donte Williams.

The Xplosion lost the first two of the five games played Saturday, and Nikki said the team simply beat themselves by not playing well. They did not let that stop them however, as they came back and earned a spot in the final championship game, which was played around 7 p.m. that night.

For the championship, the SC Xplosion faced a team which had gone undefeated throughout the tournament. The game was a close one, as the SC Xplosion came up short in a final score of 2-1.

“Our girls battled hard against a really tough team,” Nikki said. “All of the girls really came together and supported one another throughout the day. The bond they have as a team is something truly special!”

Besides being named first runner-up for the Pink Out tournament, the SC Xplosion was also recognized for the “Best Uniform” award, which was decided by umpires’ votes. The uniforms were judged since each team wore uniforms incorporating the color pink for the tournament. The Xplosion’s uniforms included t-shirts designed by Crisp and Son. The shirts displayed the team’s slogan for the day — “Light the fuse on cancer” — which was created by Coach Billy Burgess to coincide with the team’s name. SC Xplosion players also wore tie-dyed socks and breast cancer awareness ribbons, which were added to the girls’ hair bows and socks by team parent Latoya Garrett.

“We wanted something different and to stand out,” Nikki said.

The team was able to purchase their jerseys, socks and bows with the help of its sponsors — Vapor Warehouse, Kendall Austin Roofing and Construction, Toya’s Tasty Treats, Lewis Funeral Home, CU Pharmaceutical Research, Palmetto Transportation Division and Tammy Russel Income Tax & Bookkeeping.

“All of this would not be possible without the help of (the sponsors), our supportive parents, and the awesome girls we have on this team,” Nikki said.

The team will play its next tournament — the second-annual Brandy Fowler Tournament — on Saturday, Nov. 5, in Boiling Springs, and its final tournament of the season will be the Support Our Troops tournament on Saturday, Nov. 12, at Tyger River Park in Duncan.

Courtesy photo South Carolina Xplosion travel softball team members are, left to right, (front) Precious Rice, Savannah Fowler, Morgan Chesnut, Morgan Gilmore, (back) Haleigh Burgess, Abby Benfield, Averie Lewis, Laken Lewis, Orianna Stewart, Caylee Lawson and Janiyah Glenn.
http://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/web1_softball-tournament.jpgCourtesy photo South Carolina Xplosion travel softball team members are, left to right, (front) Precious Rice, Savannah Fowler, Morgan Chesnut, Morgan Gilmore, (back) Haleigh Burgess, Abby Benfield, Averie Lewis, Laken Lewis, Orianna Stewart, Caylee Lawson and Janiyah Glenn.
SC Xplosion competes in Pink Out tournament

By Derik Vanderford

dvanderford@civitasmedia.com

Derik Vanderford can be reached at 864-762-4128.

Derik Vanderford can be reached at 864-762-4128.

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