First Posted: 1/27/2013
In the winter months Lou Lussi is more stir crazy than most of us in the Pittston area. December and January are the only months when the 66-year-old Lussi doesn’t play slo-pitch softball.
Last year he played about 150 games with three different travel teams and a local 50 plus league. His softball year started and ended in Florida with the USA Tournament of Champions in Lakeland in February and the SSUSA Senior Softball National Championship in November, where he played on a the 65 plus national championship team sponsored by Anaconda Sports of Albany, New York.
Lou Lussi was on fire in the tournament. He batted .700 for the tourney. In the championship game against US Jobs from Indiana Lussi hit for the cycle – single, double, triple and home run – with an intentional walk and six RBIs and was selected to the all-tournament team.
Last summer Lussi played with Hamel’s Builders of Baltimore, which won a regional title in Georgia where he was selected Offensive Player of the Year.
Starting as a teenager in the Greater Pittston League, Lussi has been playing softball for nearly 50 years without missing a season. In 1982 he played on a class A state championship team with Doc’ Sports Bar in West Pittston and went to a national tourney in Oklahoma. When the GP league folded in the late 1980s he played in leagues in Old Forge and Scranton. When he was 35 he went to his first age-group state tournament.
In 2005 he joined a 50 plus travel team out of Allentown and he has been traveling widely with age group teams ever since.
He’s played in New York, New Jersey, Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, Florida and Las Vegas.
Lussi said the bats used in the 60 plus and above tourneys, called senior bats are hot. They can add 40 feet and a lot of speed to a hit, which is dangerous for pitchers. He said most of the pitchers wear helmets, face guards and other protection.
On Mondays in the summer he plays in the Birchwood 50 and over league in Plains and with the travel teams three weekends a month.
Why does he keep going?
I love it, he said. It’s a lot of fun and a lot of competition.