MARQUETTE - Players from across the Upper Peninsula will converge on Escanaba Wednesday for the second annual U.P. All-Star Softball Games.
Action is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at the Lemerand Softball Park in Escanaba.
Weather permitting, a pair of six- or seven-inning games will be held.
Senja Liimatta of Marquette Senior High School, shown here pitching against Negaunee earlier this past season, is scheduled to take part in the Upper Peninsula All-Star Softball Games starting at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Escanaba. (Journal photo by Adelle Whitefoot)
"We'd like the girls to play as much as possible, depending on the weather," Games coordinator Rusty Bluse said.
He said 29 players have committed to participate, with teams divided into North and South squads.
Last year, the first game ended in a 0-0 tie at Hurley Field in Marquette. The second game was called off after one-half inning due to a thunderstorm that rolled through the area.
U.P. All-Star Softball Games, 6 p.m. Wednesday in Escanaba
Megan Jean of Sault Ste. Marie, who won the Home Run Derby, gained Most Valuable Player honors for the North. For the South, Neena Brockway of Rapid River pocketed the MVP nod.
Bluse said Wednesday's scheduled contests - subsidized by the Escanaba Fan Club - nearly didn't come to pass due to a lack of players.
"We sent letters out to all U.P. softball coaches asking them to nominate their best players for the Games," he said. "We didn't get a good response. Only about half responded.
"I'm disappointed with the coaches, but we finally got just enough players to participate."
The same can't be said about U.P. baseball. Bluse said planned All-Star Baseball Games won't be held due to a lack of interest.
There will be no admission charged at Wednesday's games. A concession stand will be open, Bluse said.
Linda Bouvet of Sault Ste. Marie will coach the North squad, with help from Newberry's Bruce Dake.
For the South, Ashley Hughes of Gladstone will be assisted by Scott Conery of Norway.
Superiorland players scheduled to play for the North, unless late team assignments need to be altered, are as follows: