After 5 consecutive days of fierce competition, great memories and good times, The Nationals youth travel baseball tournament culminates on Championship Thursday, the event’s marquee day, and one of the big reasons that make this such a special experience. The activities start at 10am with the final four (semi-finals) in each age group and end with the All-Star games starting at approximately 9:00pm that night, under the lights. Even if your team has already been eliminated from the tournament there are tons of events lined up for your players to rejuvenate their spirits and build on their great memories at the Nationals! All players will participate in skills competitions, will be eligible to be selected for the Nationals All-Star teams, will receive parting gifts and so much more! We will announce the winner of our pin trading contest. That lucky player will be eligible to receive two tickets to Major League Baseball’s World Series! It’s a full day filled with activities, contests, baseball vendors and great events for all – a baseball festival! No matter if your team won or lost during the week, Championship Thursday will be your last memory of the Nationals, and we assure you, it will be a great send off!
Championship Thursday begins with the Nationals Final Four! Semi-final matchups in each age group. The final four teams who survived their first, second round and quarter-final matchups on Wednesday will begin their quest for a National championship. Each age group will have two semi-final games at 10:00am.
At 1pm the atmosphere is electric as the Nationals championship games begin for each of the age groups at the magnificent Ocean Springs Sports Complex championship fields. The two teams in each age group that have made it here are to be commended as they have made it through the stretch of 5 pool play games and have won several elimination games over the course of 6 consecutive days of competition. Each and every player will be announced in a pre-game ceremony signifying their great accomplishment in getting this far. At the end of the game, a national champion will be crowned!
All players, coaches, friends and family members will re-assemble for the exciting Nationals Awards Ceremony and All-Star Selections Presentation. Every player will be eligible to be selected to the Nationals All-Star teams. At least one player from each participating team is guaranteed a spot on the All-Star roster. The two coaching staffs that led their respective teams to the Championship games will have the honor of coaching the All-Star teams in this battle of Yellow vs White later that evening. Those coaches will receive a special gift for volunteering their time. At 4pm we will have our ceremonies where the player selections will be announced. Selections will be chosen by the Nationals tournament directors based on statistical performance during the pool play games all week. During the award ceremonies, each selected player will be called up front to the podium to receive a medal and a special All-Star jersey to be worn during the game. The medal and jersey are theirs to keep as a reminder of their terrific accomplishment during the Nationals. A total of 28 players, 14 Yellow and 14 White, will be selected from each age group. For those that are not selected, this is a great way to get behind their teammates and cheer them on as they perform in this special game! In addition, during this award ceremony, we will present our coach appreciation award and the winners of the pin trading contest and other giveaways will also be announced!
Skills competitions begin for each age group. All teams get one last chance to show their talents on the diamonds with team skills competitions including Home Run Derby, Speed Burner, 9-Hole and Around the Horn competitions. Awards will be presented to the winners of each activity. At the conclusion of the skills competitions, each player and coach will be presented with their Nationals parting gift from their participation in the Nationals!
The Youth Baseball Nationals All-Star games begin, under the lights, for each age group. The atmosphere is energetic as the 14 players from the Yellow All-Star team battle the 14 from the White All-Star team in a fun, spirited competition! It’s a great opportunity for players and families that have battled against each other all week to find themselves as teammates. The All-Star game culminates an amazing week of competition and an incredible experience for all!