Participating in a tournament halfway across the country isn't realistic for many softball teams, but if that is where the best competition can be found local softball team Total Kaos has proved it will do whatever it takes to make the trip a reality.
The Total Kaos franchise was started by Harrison High School's Varsity Softball Coach Dean Marino nearly fifteen years ago. Marino is the coach of the sixteen and under team that recently competed in the Pony National tournament in Akron, Ohio. The team was made up of players from various areas of the county but seven of the athletes were members of the 2010 Harrison varsity team.
The members of the team from Harrison were: seniors Jessica Magnotta and Samantha Lagana, as well as juniors Faryn Brown, Ally Brabant, Alyx Scapperotti, Alijah Webb and Jenna Webb.
Total Kaos also sent a team of eighteen-year-olds to Akron. The team that competed in the eighteen and under division was coached by Dean Marino's little brother Neil Marino, who became involved with Total Kaos about five years ago.
Brianna Scapperotti graduated Harrison in 2009 and pitchers Julia Brefere and Ashley Marino both graduated Harrison in June and played on Neil Marino's squad.
The tournament took place from July 25 to August 1 and both Total Kaos teams were up against some of the best teams in the eastern region, which included teams on the east coast from Maine to South Carolina.
The sixteen-year-old tournament included eleven pools with four teams in each pool. Total Kaos could not have had a better start to their tournament, crushing Tsunami Black, a team from New Jersey, in an easy 14-2 win.
But after the quick start thing's became a little more difficult for the Harrison squad as they lost their next two games in close contests. The team finished the tournament with a record of 6-4 but lost in the sweet 16 of the Pony National Tournament.
"We went up against the best competition the country has to offer," said shortstop Jessica Magnotta. "It was a valuable experience to be a part of such a prestigious tournament. The Pony Nationals is virtually the World Series of competitive softball."
The eighteen-year-old tournament was a slightly smaller one. This bracket included nine pools with four teams in each. Total Kaos is a team built on pitching and fielding and was involved in several low scoring affairs. The team went 1-2 during pool play, scoring only five runs but giving up only eight. The elder Total Kaos team went 3-4 during the tournament and ended the week tied for seventeenth place.
During breaks from the action on the field the teams also took the time to watch the Yankees take on the Indians in a game at Progressive Field. It was a week that was just as much about building team-unity as it was wins and losses, and will be sure to benefit Harrison teams in the future.