Softball tournament brings fans and money to the Coast - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Softball tournament brings fans and money to the Coast

Coaches and fans say they love the softball facility in Gulfport and enjoy the hospitality of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. (Photo source: WLOX) Coaches and fans say they love the softball facility in Gulfport and enjoy the hospitality of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. (Photo source: WLOX)
It's the largest such tournament ever hosted at the Gulfport Sportsplex.  (Photo source: WLOX) It's the largest such tournament ever hosted at the Gulfport Sportsplex. (Photo source: WLOX)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

From Georgia to Oklahoma, hundreds of softball families and fans from across the southeast are on the Coast for a softball tournament.

Not only is it a great sporting event, but the Southern National tournament is also a big hit for the Coast economy.

More than 125 fast pitch teams will take the field over the next few days at the Gulfport Sportsplex. This Southern National tournament is serious softball.

“It's going to be challenging, and we're going to see where our girls are in their development. So, it will be fun to watch,” said Juan Aldrete, from Texas.

The group from Pasadena, Texas is ready for a good time. Along with cheering on their team, they will also be checking out what the Coast has to offer.

“There's a nice fun water park right across the street, but I see those lines are already stacking up. Hopefully, we'll get to that beach sometime today. So, it will be fun,” said Rachel McClure.

“I'm going to hit the casinos as soon as I get out of here. I'm going to hit 'em hard and heavy, try to take a little money back to Texas,” said Denise Nance.

This is the largest softball tournament ever hosted here at the sportsplex. Players, fans and coaches gave the Gulfport facility great reviews.

“The complex is great. The people are great. Teams are awesome. Good competition. It gets intense, and we play good down here too, that's another reason,” said Jason Burt, from Mississippi.

The biggest challenge may be finding a way to stay cool in all this heat. The tents are up, the umbrellas are out and the fans are turning.

“Oh, it feels good, instead of being in the hot air. But I'm going to have to still be in it,” said Linleigh Burt, as she sat in front of her fan.

After the game is over, these fans will find some fun on the Coast.

“Well, first we're going to go get us some barbecue. Then we're going to go for a dive, check out the beach life and do a little shopping,” said Terrika Dunn, from Louisiana.

Copyright 2015 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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