First year Intensity team is --- intense
June 25, 2008 · Updated 12:04 PM
"When Todd Lubach decided that he and his daughter Carolann were tired of traveling to Mt. Vernon two evenings a week so she could practice with her select fastpitch team the last two seasons, he formed his own 14-and-under team on South Whidbey. Unlike most other select teams, however, who draw players from several high school and middle school programs, his Island Intensity squad draws all but one of it players from the South Whidbey School District. The lone exception comes from Coupeville. Given that, Lubach decided to put his team in the B division instead of the obviously tougher A division. I knew we had some good players here and that our Little League program was pretty decent, said Lubach, a multi-sport standout at Langley High School in the late '70s. So I thought that we'd be pretty competitive at the B level, even though it was our first year. But a funny thing happened on the way to the B division. After placing in five out of eight A level tournaments - including one championship, two seconds and two thirds - the Intensity has been kicked up to the A division for postseason play. And along the way it has qualified for the B World Series in Auburn, FL, the NSA A World Series in Columbus, OH, the 2000 NFPSA summer nationals in Salem, OR and the NSA tournament of champions in Monroe. We've certainly exceed all my expectations for a first-year team, said Lubach. I'm amazed at what they've accomplished. Most recently, Intensity has turned in back-to-back second-place finishes the last two weekends in tournaments in Monroe and Marysville. Marysville, June 10-11 After failing to win a game on Saturday, Intensity came back on Sunday as the bottom seed in the tournament to upend the Absolute Blast 8-3 and the Northwest Force 7-6 in a tiebreaker, before falling to the Diamond Dusters 4-1 in the title game. Against the Blast, which no-hit the Intensity the day before, Christie Robinson scattered three hits and struck out four to get the win. Carolann Lubach was 3-for-3 with two RBI while Shannon Brown was 2-3 with three RBI. Robinson also got the win against the Force, pitching two scoreless tiebreaker innings. Jenny Murphy, a first-team All-North Cascades Conference selection as a freshman for the South Whidbey high school team, doubled in Carolann Lubach with the winning run. Colleen Johnson was 2-2 and Katy McGillen 2-5, with both scoring twice. In the championship game, Carolann Lubach was 2-3 while, according to Todd Lubach, McGillen made two phenomenal catches deep in center field. We're playing against the very best 14-and-under teams in the state and somehow manage to keep bringing home the hardware. Monroe, June 17-18 Once again struggling on Saturday, finishing 1-2 in round robin play, Intensity nevertheless once again found itself back in the title game of the NSA Sky River Classic after downing the Richmond Islanders 2-0 and the Absolute Blast 3-2. Intensity came up short in the championship game, though, falling to the Lake Breeze 5-0. Ashley Lopez got the win against Richmond, giving up four hits and striking out five. Julie Robinson doubled in one run while a Jenny Murphy sacrifice fly plated the other. In the semifinals, Intensity used Carolann Lubach's squeeze bunt to score McGillen with the winning run in the seventh. Aboard on a double, McGillen then stole third, before coming home on Carolann Lubach's clutch bunt. Christie Robinson picked up the victory, allowing five hits. In the championship, Lake Breeze pitching limited Intensity to just two hits, one by Julie Robinson and the other by Carolann Lubach. They have proven themselves as one of the best teams in the state of Washington and they should be very proud, Todd Lubach said. This is more than I could have ever imagined. "