The 2012 Sensations, from left: KayLynn Lantis, Jenny Keck, Monique Ochoa, Aspen Smith, Zandra Carlini, Hannah Hays, Sally Hengen, Marissa Ramos, Tracy Blake, Mikenzi Wiseman and Kaley Stokey.
The 16U North Platte Sensations competed in the largest fast-pitch tournament in the world June 26-30, the Triple Crown Colorado Sparkler.
More than 850 teams converge at the Sparkler in the Denver area for the week-long event.
The Sensations went 3-1 in qualifying pool play and 1-2 in head-to-head tournament play to finish with a 4-3 record.
In the first game of pool play, the Sensations faced the Originals-Belger of St. Joseph, Mo. The Sensations made costly errors and could not get the bats going.
In the top of the fifth, the Original's pitcher was working on a one-hit shutout until Sensations Catcher Mikenzi Wiseman stepped to the plate. Wiseman hit a 240-feet line-drive homerun over the center-field fence to deny the Originals a shutout.
The Sensations lost 11-1 and Marissa Ramos took the loss on the mound for the Sensations.
In game two the Sensations took on Axe Lee of Allen, Texas. The Sensation's bats were hot as they won 8-3. Kaley Stokey, Sally Hengen, Monique Ochoa, Ramos and Wiseman all went 2-3 at the plate and KayLynn Lantis went 2-2. Jenny Keck was the winning pitcher.
Game three saw the Sensations jump out to a huge lead over the Colorado Panthers and go on to win by the "run-rule," 14-0. Ochoa went 4-4, Keck 3-4, and Stokey, Ramos, Hengen and Wiseman went 2-4. Keck got the win on the mound.
In the final game of pool play, the Sensations faced the California Diamonds of Rancho Cucamonga. The Sensations won 4-2. Stokey, Ramos, Ochoa and Zandra Carlini all went 2 for 3 and Hannah Hays went 1 for 2. Ramos was the winning pitcher.
To open tournament play the Sensations drew the Utah Bukoos of Salt Lake City. The Sensations struggled at the plate and lost 9-0. Hengen went 2-2 and Carlini was 2-3. Keck and Ramos shared pitching duties.
In game two the Sensations faced the Nor Cal Legends of San Jose and San Diego, Calif. in one of the most exciting games of the tournament.
In the bottom of the first inning, with the bases loaded and facing a full count, Zandra Carlini smashed a grand slam homerun over the left-field fence to put the Sensations up 5-0.
The Legends gradually fought their way back and took a 10-9 lead in the sixth inning. In the bottom of the sixth with two outs, time expired and the Sensations facing tournament elimination, Mikenzi Wiseman stepped to the plate with runners at second and third.
Wiseman blasted a line-drive shot down the third baseline to score the runners and the Sensations won the game 11-10.
Stokey was 4-4, Hengen and Keck went 3-4, Ochoa and Wiseman went 2-3, and Aspen Smith was 1-1. Ramos got the win on the mound and Keck got the save.
The Sensations took on the St. Louis Chaos '95 in game three of tournament play. The Sensations were looking to get revenge for the North Platte Jr. Belles, who lost 1-0 to the Chaos the previous day.
The Chaos went ahead 1-0 on a solo homerun in the bottom of the first inning. In the top of the sixthl, with a runner on base, Jenny Keck hit a homerun over the center-field fence to put the Sensations up 2-1.
In the bottom of the seventh inning the Chaos scored and won the game 3-2, eliminating the Sensations from the tournament.
Wiseman went 2-2 at the plate, Ochoa went 2-3, Keck and Hays went 1-3. Ramos took the loss on the mound.
The Sensations lost to distinguished opponents. Both the Utah Bukoos and the St. Louis Chaos '95 advanced to the final four of the champions bracket
Two of the Sensations -- Mikenzi Wiseman and Kaley Stokey -- were invited to play on separate Triple Crown All-Star Teams on June 26 in Westminster, Colo.
Stokey was also named to the Triple Crown 16 All-American Team, making her the second Sensation player to be named to the All-American Team.
Last year, Wiseman was named to the 2011 14 All-American Team.
Next, the Sensations will be in action July 13-15 in Hastings at the ASA Class A State Softball Tournament.