AURORA | The annual flock of high school-aged softball teams to Colorado is underway, as the Colorado Fireworks tournament returns to the Aurora Sports Park and other venues around the city.

Every year, more than 200 teams in 16-under and 18-under age groups from across the country come to town for the Fireworks tournament — which is being held in conjunction with the Sparkler tournament in Westminster — which runs July 1-7.

College coaches annually flood the tournament hosted by Triple Crown Sports that makes uses of the city’s highly-regarded Aurora Sports Park as well as Olympic Park, Highline Park, Horseshoe Park and Arapahoe Little League Park.

As usual, a large number of players from Aurora high school programs — who are set to compete in the fall season or have recently graduated — appear on a variety of Colorado teams in the field.

In the 18U Supplemental Pool is the Colorado Styxx, which feature Cherokee Trail graduate and University of Minnesota signee Delanie Cox along with seniors-to-be Jacque Ley (Grandview) and Maddie Unrein (Eaglecrest); the Colorado Angels Quimby team includes two Eaglecrest grads in Rachel Sabourin (a University of Hawaii signee) and Rylee Waggoner (who is headed to Montana State-Billings) plus Regis Jesuit grad Jackie Cal while the Colorado Next Level Gold team has Grandview graduate Taryn Moan (a Black Hills State signee) and Cherokee Trail junior-to-be Kelsey Bell.

The American Freedom – Balbin 18U team has an Ealecrest senior-to-be in Kristen Greenwalt.

Another pair of Cherokee Trail players for the upcoming season appear on the Colorado Next Level Gold roster in the 16U Supplemental Pool, while Grandview junior-to-be Lyla Michels suits up for the Colorado Styxx team in the same bracket.

The Colorado Fireworks tournament is annually one of the City of Aurora’s best revenue makers as far as tourism as it brings hundreds of players, parents and college coaches (typically more than 300 programs at various levels are represented) come to the city and surrounding areas for a week.

Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports


July 1-7

Aurora venues: Aurora Sports Park, Olympic Park, Highline Park, Horseshoe Park, Arapahoe Little League Park

Colorado teams (per 16U Power Pool Supplemental — TC Stars 16 Gold (Pool AJ); 16 & Under — Colorado Sapphires (Pool A); Colorado Styxx (Pool B); Colorado Next Level (Pool C); 18U Power Pool Supplemental — TC Stars Gold (Pool AC); Colorado Styxx (Pool AE); Colorado Next Level (Pool AF); Firecrackers Gale (Pool BC); Colorado Angels Quimby 18 Gold (Pool BD); 18 & Under — American Freedom – Balbin 18A (Pool B); American Freedom CO 2019 (Pool I)

Updated schedules and brackets at

Courtney Oakes is sports Editor and photographer with Sentinel Colorado. A Denver East High School alum. He came to the Sentinel in 2001 and since then has received a number of professional awards from...