John “Moon” Larson managed the powerhouse Bank of Westmont team throughout the 1980s. A competitor of such legendary teams as Lilly Air Systems, Joe Black’s and Burla Construction, “The Bank” compiled a 954-307 mark under Larson over a 21-year period – 14 of those in the USSSA. During the 80s, The Bank won two State Titles, posted annual top five state finishes and had numerous top ten final national rankings.
In 1984, The Bank experienced their breakthrough, pulling off an upset win in a Class A qualifier. They traveled to Anaheim, California to play in the Class A World and went 5-2 to finish in the top ten, at a time when “A” was the top division.
Larson particularly enjoyed competing against Ken Adam’s One Hour Cleaners (now Home Run Inn), as well as banging heads with such top competition as the Kings, Lilly Air, Burla/Malnar’s, RMA, Rogers Drywall and Joe Black’s. He prizes being respected by the guys on those teams.
“With any one of those teams, you knew you were gonna have your hands full,” he said. “They always battled. They always came to play.”
In fact, big games aside, he mainly remembers the people he competed against, noting that he made more friendships out of softball than anything else.