The Florida Fire 98 team will hold a golf tournament on Saturday, June 29 to help raise money to help offset their expense of traveling to the 2012 ASA National tournament in Sioux Falls, South Dakota this summer.

By Tracie Pridemore

Florida Fire Fastpitch softball was formed as a nonprofit organization to provide young ladies ages 8-18 an opportunity to play softball at a highly competitive level with focus on academics and civic/charitable involvement.  The organization is committed to ensuring the girls are given the best chance to excel as a softball players at the highest levels, while teaching valuable life skills in the areas of diversity, teamwork, fitness, critical thinking, goal setting and time management.

The Florida Fire 98 team was one of only a few Florida 12U teams to qualify to play in the American Softball Association  (ASA) National tournament in 2011 in Montgomery, Alabama.  In order to qualify for nationals the team must win first place at one of the qualifying tournaments, which the Fire was able to do at an ASA 12U Elite Invitation-only tournament. This is accomplished through many hours of practice as a team, and individual hitting and pitching lessons throughout the week, as well as weekly conditioning. You might ask, is it worth all the time, energy and money? “Of course it is, softball is my life—-and I hope to continue on to play high school and college softball,” replied Hannah Pridemore, an eighth grade student on the Fire 98 team.  “It is a lot of work and a lot of time, but we have the greatest girls on our team and we all love being together both on and off the field.”

The girls are practicing hard and traveling most weekends from now until mid-July to qualify, travel and play in the ASA Nationals.  Why is it so important?  Manager of the Fire 98 Coach Ed Davis said. “Our girls are aspiring to play softball at the highest level that they can and ASA Gold Nationals is the pinnacle of softball in the country.  It is a great experience for our girls to play against the best competition in the country!” 

As the girls work toward their goal of achieving a berth in the 2012 ASA National tournament this summer in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, they are working together to raise money to offset the expense of traveling for this trip. The team is sponsoring a golf tournament to be held on Friday, June 29, at Bloomingdale Golfer’s Club in Valrico. There will be a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. The cost is $75 per golfer or $300 per foursome which includes green fees, range balls, cart and a barbecue lunch.

For more information or to reserve a spot, please contact Tracie Pridemore at 417-8620 or at

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