Beginning Monday and running throughout the week, the Morse Park ballfields will be home to a district tournament for the first time since Little League’s return to Neosho less than two years ago.
The tournament will include three divisions: 8-year-old softball, 9-year-old baseball and 9 and 10-year-old softball.
With the community-run Little League in just its second season, organizers say they’re excited to be selected to host tournament play.
“I can’t think of the last time that we’ve hosted something like this as far as Little League is concerned,” said Neosho Little League player agent Alyssa Hendricks. “We were pretty excited to get the news and to be able to get the approval and to just do something for the town.”
Hendricks said the 8-year-old softball division will be made up of a Neosho team and a Seneca team, with their first game set for 7 p.m. Monday.
The 9-year-old baseball division will be made up of teams from Webb City, Carl Junction and Neosho, and will also play their first game at 7 p.m. Monday.
In the 9 and 10-year-old softball division, Joplin, Webb City, Seneca and Neosho will compete, with games set for 5:45 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Monday.
Hendricks said game times would remain the same through Wednesday, with game times later in the week to be announced.
Teams competing in this week’s tournament are their town’s all-star teams for their division and are made up of players selected by coaches and Little League boards from the regular season teams.
Hendricks said the district tournament is the starting point for the teams, who then have the chance to move up to a sectional or eventually a state tournament.
She said the Neosho Little League will also be represented in the Joplin district tournament this week with an 8-year-old boys baseball team, 13 and 14-year-old team, and a team from the 10 and 11-year old division playing.
“We’ve got a lot of good stuff happening this week,” Hendricks said.
While the Little League board has expressed concerns about the condition of Morse Park in the past, Hendricks said the work of Little League volunteers and city workers has helped prepare the fields to be up to hosting a district tournament.
“We definitely still need improvements, there’s lots of improvements that are needed at Morse Park,” Hendricks said. “But the city’s been really great helping keep it up this year along with all of us volunteers at Little League.”
Hendricks said new scoreboards have been added to the fields in preparation for the district tournament.
Page 2 of 2 - “We want to try to bring these types of tournaments to the city in order to grow the Little League and grow our community,” Hendricks said. “Hopefully the community can come out and cheer on our teams, I know the kids love it when they do that.”
For more information, contact Hendricks at 455-3821 or contact Neosho Little League President Angie Leach at 850-6369.