Newts Win! Newts Win!
The following story was originally published by the World Wiffle® Ball Championship at worldwiffleball.org.
MIDLOTHIAN - A new banner will adorn the grounds of historic Migley Field in New Carlisle, Indiana, as the New Carlisle Newts steamrolled through the Sunday bracket to capture their first World Wiffle® Ball Championship.
New Carlisle beat the upstart Ohio Knuckleheads, 12-4, showcasing the prodigious power they exhibited throughout the two-day event. Noah Shail and Zarek Finley reached Saturday afternoon’s Home Run Derby finals and each contributed to a balanced Newt attack in the title game. After locking up the 2-seed with a flawless 4-0 Saturday, the Newts were boosted by the Sunday return of “Mr. Newt,” Garrett Curless, one of the game’s greats.
In the Final Four, the Newts jumped on 2017 runner-up, Granger Panthers, early and often as they broke through to the championship game for the first time after reaching five of the previous six Final Fours from 2015-2020.
Captain, Koby Keck, has expertly reconfigured his roster over the past seven years and found the right mixture of talent to get the Newts across the finish line. The Newts become the second team from New Carlisle to hoist the Princess City Crown, joining the Looney Wifflers who won 21 years ago.
The Knuckleheads, from Mentor, Ohio, entered Sunday as the 16-seed but displayed tremendous athleticism on their difficult road to the championship game. After beating the Godfathers in the first round, the Knuckleheads took out the 1-seed, Wiffle Dees, in an extra-inning classic. The next two rounds featured wins over teams with a combined nine World Championships: 4-time champs, Club Ripped, in the Elite 8 and the defending 5-time champs, Cult West Warriors, in a 4-3 Final Four battle.
50 teams (from 9 states) participated in the 42nd Annual World Wiffle® Ball Championship on Saturday, all playing four games. 32 teams advanced to the single-elimination tournament on Sunday.
*Thanks to all the wifflers that participated this weekend, $2,500 will be donated to South Suburban Humane Society. Since the tournament moved to Midlothian in 2018, $9,600 has been raised to help with the tremendous work that SSHS does for animals.
*Cult West fell just short in their attempt to be the first team in WWBC history to win six straight World Championships, an incredible run against increasingly loaded tournament fields.
*Jay Ryans (Cult West Warriors) and Andy Sieradzki (Clutch Players) were inducted as the 41st and 42nd members of the World Wiffle® Ball Championship Hall of Fame.
*Saturday’s Home Run Derby lived up to the hype with Jared Jonkman (Maple City Magic) defeating Shail in the finals, after each hit 20 HRs to qualify for the championship round, and 16 in their initial head-to-head matchup. Jonkman outlasted Shail, 12-11, in the hit-off to be named the 2021 Plastic King of Swing.
*The dates for the 43rd World Wiffle® Ball Championship will be announced in the coming months, with registration open in January 2022.