The Arkansas Lightning, a USSSA baseball team formed of players from Viola, Salem, Cave City, Highland and Mayflower, traveled all across the state this summer.
The Lightning were Griffin and Pippin NIT Champions, Black River Shootout Champions and the Summer Sizzler NIT Champions. The squad was also runners-up at Outlaws Spring Break Classic NIT and at the Stars & Stripes NIT.
The Arkansas Lightning started the season as a 14AA team.
As the season went on, the team was ranked #1 in the state and got moved up to 14AAA.
The Lightning continued to roll and took over the #1 ranking in class 14AAA.
The Lightning was able to finish the regular season as 14AAA State Points Champions.
The Lightning also got some national attention in the rankings, moving all the way to #7 ranking in the nation in 14AAA.
The Lightning elected to not patriciate in their 14AAA World Series due to the distance to travel and instead registered in the Midwest Premier AAYBA World Series.
The Arkansas Lightning team played games for a week in St. Louis, Mo., and finished the world series in 4th place.
The Arkansas Lightning also participated in the Mid South USSSA Super NIT for a chance to compete on television at Walt Disney World.
To qualify, one had to finish in the top two to earn a berth.
Ultimately, the Lightning fell short, but the good news was that the Lightning players were elected to the All-American tryouts for a chance to represent the USA Junior World Championships.
The team would like to thank all of their sponsors for the great opportunity they had: NAEC, U.S. Bank, White River Insurance of Cave city, Riverbend Nursery, Bank of Salem, Horseshoe Bend Health & Medicine, Tracy Langston Ford, Chartrage Pharmacy and a special thanks to Joe and Dawnisa York and York's Dozing for supporting the community and the Arkansas Lightning for the chance to experience such a great season.
The Arkansas Lightning team had five players selected to the 14 All-State Team for 2009 -- Dillon Turner, Justus Holland, Casey York, Sterling Stowers and John Turney.