10-24-2014 USA Junior Womens Camp

USA Junior Women’s Camp

Initial invitees announced for 2015 USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team Selection Camp

OKLAHOMA CITY – Twenty-two athletes have received invitations to try out for the 2015 USA Softball Junior Women’s (19-Under) National Team (JWNT) the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America and USA Softball announced today. Those athletes who accept an invitation to try out will participate in the 2015 JWNT Selection Camp, which will be held January 3-4, 2015 at Bill Barber Park in Irvine, Calif. Seventeen athletes will be selected by members of the USA Softball Women’s National Team Selection Committee (WNTSC) to represent the United States as a member of the 2015 JWNT roster that will compete at the World Cup of Softball X in Southern California and the International Softball Federation (ISF) Junior Women’s World Championship, which will be held August 9-15 in Oklahoma City, Okla..

Name / College Name/College
Taran Alvelo – Washington* Kayli Kvistad – Florida
McKenna Arriola – Oregon State Jenna Lilley – Oregon
Tera Blanco – Michigan Destinie Lookout – Oklahoma
Mari Cranek – Alabama* CJ McClain – Tennessee
Alissa Dalton – Oklahoma* Jenavee Peres – San Diego State
Nicole DeWitt – Florida Kobie Pettis – California
Astin Donovan – South Florida Arden Pettit – Stanford
Mia Fung – South Florida Lindsay Rood – California*
Johanna Grauer – UCLA Gwen Svekis – Oregon
Megan Gregg – Tennessee Allison Walljasper – LSU
Jazmyn Jackson – California Chelsea Whitcomb – Virginia Tech
*University commit: indicates University athlete will be attending*
* We will announce other JWNT Selection Camp opportunities on November 3*

Additional athletes may be invited to the USA Softball JWNT Selection Camp at a later date while additional opportunities for athletes to try out for the 2015 JWNT will be announced on November 3 via USASoftball.com. During the selection process, athletes will participate in position drills as well as simulated games and be evaluated by the WNTSC.

Once selected, the JWNT will compete in the World Cup of Softball X in Southern California and the ISF Junior Women’s World Championship in Oklahoma City, Okla. The complete 2015 schedule for the JWNT, including exhibition games, will be announced at a later date.

2015 Junior Women’s National Team International Schedule
Date Event Location
June 30 – July 5 World Cup of Softball X Southern California
August 9-15 ISF Junior Women’s World Championship Oklahoma City, Okla.

This will be the first time in World Cup of Softball history that the JWNT will participate as the team will build towards reclaiming the Gold at the ISF Junior Women’s World Championship. At the last ISF Junior Women’s World Championship in 2013, the U.S. finished runner-up after falling 4-0 to Japan in Brampton, Ontario, Canada. This marks the first time since 1995 that an ISF Junior Women’s World Championship has been held in the United States.

Led by Head Coach Tairia Flowers (Tucson, Ariz./ head coach at Cal State Northridge), the complete coaching staff for the 2015 JWNT will be announced at a later date.

For updates on the USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team and events throughout the 2015 season visit www.USASoftball.com.


10-17-2014 Players Invited to 2015 USA Softball Camp

USA Softball Invites 32 to 2014-15 Camp

October 16, 2014

Thirty-two initial athletes invited to 2015 USA Softball Women’s National Team Selection Camp; Coaching staff announced

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America and USA Softball announced today the list of initial invitees for the 2015 USA Softball Women’s National Team Selection Camp to be held January 4-8, 2015 at Bill Barber Park in Irvine, Calif. Those athletes who accept the invitation to try out will vie for 17 spots on the 2015 USA Softball Women’s National Team (WNT) roster that will compete at the World Cup of Softball X in July, 2015 and a spot on the 15-athlete roster that will compete in the 2015 Pan American Games, which will be held July 15-26 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Additional athletes may be invited to the USA Softball WNT Selection Camp at a later date. During the five-day selection process athletes will participate in position drills as well as simulated games and be evaluated by the Women’s National Team Selection Committee (WNTSC).

Once selected, the WNT will compete in the World Cup of Softball X in Southern California and the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The complete 2015 schedule for the WNT, including exhibition games, will be announced at a later date.

2015 Women’s National Team International Schedule
Date Event Location
June 30 – July 5 World Cup of Softball X Southern California
July 15-26 Pan American Games Toronto, Ontario, Canada

In addition to the list of invitees, the full coaching staff has been selected for the WNT for competitions in 2015. With Ken Eriksen (Tampa, Fla./Head Coach at USF) at the head of the Women’s program, the Assistant Coaches will be Laura Berg (Corvallis, Ore./head coach at Oregon State), Howard Dobson (Orange, Texas/assistant coach at LSU) and Lisa Dodd (San Diego, Calif./head coach at UNLV). All three served as Assistant Coaches for the 2014 WNT that claimed the General Tire World Cup of Softball IX and the silver medal at the International Softball Federation (ISF) Women’s World Championship in Haarlem, Netherlands in 2014.

For updates on the USA Softball Women’s National Team and events throughout the 2015 season visit www.USASoftball.com.
The list includes all 17 of the players on the USA roster at the International:
Arioto, Chavanne, Chidester, Fischer, Fox, Gibson. Henderson, Hoagland, Martinez, cleney, Moore, Moultrie, Nevins, Plaza, Stewart, Trainaand Wilson.
The 15 additional players include:
Aldrete, Carda, Chamberlain, Cordes, Creger, Freeman, Goodacre, Hawkins, Hudson, Hugo, Lindvall, Romero, Takeda, Waldrop, and Wilkerson.

In an upcoming editorial, The Haarlem Trilogy, Spy discusses ther pros and cons of the team which lost twice to Japan in Haarlem, and what changes in the overall program are needed for future success, including building for 2020.



10-9-2014 December IOC Executive Board

IOC Executive Board Meeting and 127th IOC Session in Monaco – Information for the media


The IOC Executive Board (EB) meeting and the 127th IOC Session will be held in Monaco, Principality of Monaco, from 5 to 9 December 2014 (EB from 5 to 7 December/Session on 8 and 9 December).

The 127th IOC Session will take decisions on key policy issues following the consultation process and discussions initiated by IOC President Thomas Bach as part of Olympic Agenda 2020 – a strategic roadmap that will shape the future of the Olympic Movement.

Olympic Agenda 2020 is addressing three major themes: sustainability, credibility and youth, and the direction of the reforms has been widely endorsed and supported by the entire Olympic Movement so far.

The Session in Monaco is expected to make key decisions in the following areas:

- a possible new strategy for the bidding procedure will be addressed, in particular how the Olympic Games fit best into the social, environmental and long-term development plan of a host region;

- possible changes to the procedure for the composition of the Olympic Programme. This could include proposals for a more flexible approach by adopting an event-based rather than a sport-based approach to the composition of the programme;

- the establishment of an Olympic TV channel to help increase the presence of sports and the promotion of the Olympic values year round and worldwide.

All meetings will take place at the Grimaldi Forum Monaco, 10 Avenue Princesse Grace – MC 98000. Tel: +377 99 99 20 00. Click here for the map of the hotel and its surroundings.


10-2-2014 WBSC Equates Baseball Success with 2020 Potential

Netherlands win European baseball title before packed stadium and strong TV audiences, highlighting growing popularity and competitiveness of baseball/softball in Europe in countdown to historic Olympic 2020 decision


- Europe embracing baseball and softball, says WBSC President Fraccari

- Latest World Baseball Rankings released — Five Europeans nations now featured in Top 20   

  SPY:  Unfortunately, WBSC views the world through rose-colored glasses; some obvious advances in baseball in several countries are not matched by similar expansio9n of softball in those countries.

  As SPY discusses in an upcomi8ng editorial, the softball tournament in Haarlem was essentially a four-team tournament, and much more has to be done to ensure a broad-spread Olympic-quality program in 2020.

LAUSANNE, Switzerland — The Netherlands won the 2014 European Baseball Championship by defeating arch-rival Italy 6-3 in the finale, which was played before a full MBS Stadium in Brno, Czech Republic. The match was broadcast nationally in the Netherlands via NOS and in Italy via Fox2. (See photos.)

The successful European championship involving two of Europe’s leading sporting and Olympic nations — the Netherlands and Italy — follows recent headlines by the BBCFrance24 and Russia Beyond the Headlines that the sport of baseball/softball is experiencing a steady rise in popularity and participation levels in Europe, particularly among the youth.

Forty-five matches were contested at the XXXIII European Baseball Championship, which was co-hosted in the cities of Brno and Ostrava, Czech Republic and Regensburg, Germany.

As well as growing popularity, the European and other international championships have highlighted the increasing competitiveness of the European continent and European baseball nations, which is shaping a new world order and a global restructuring of the bat-and-ball sports, according to World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) President Riccardo Fraccari.

Baseball and softball, along with other sports, are hoping to be eligible for possible Olympic consideration at the Tokyo 2020 Games, pending discussion of a more flexible Olympic sports selection process at the IOC extraordinary session in Monaco in December.

“The growing competitiveness of baseball and softball in new and non-traditional territories, and world regions such as Europe, has been driven by increasing popularity and development of the bat-and-ball sports through well-organised National Federations, professional and youth league partners, grassroots clubs, competitions, coaching, new playing facilities and community interest – which is maximising the appeal of our sport to young people, sponsors and broadcasters,” Fraccari said.

“The expanding global spread of nations performing in final rounds of international championships is showcasing baseball and softball to new domestic and international audiences and generating increasing interest and participation in bat-and-ball sports, especially among young people, and women in Muslim countries. We are very encouraged by the steady progress being made in Africa — and in Europe, the cradle of modern sport, which is now embracing softball and baseball,” he said.

Within the last few years alone, a number of new baseball/softball venues have been born around the world, with historic firsts in Ghana and Uganda, Africa — and in Europe, in places like Brest, Belarus; Essex and Farnham, U.K.; Hoofddorp, Netherlands; Mainz, Germany; Parma, Italy; Sundbyberg, Sweden; and Vác, Hungary.

“Our sport has never been more universal than it is today — across both genders — which highlights the excellent strategic planning and commitment of our National Federations and our global stakeholders to advancing baseball and softball in Europe and around the world, and in attracting young talented athletes to our sport,” Fraccari said.

The wave of growth in Europe recently saw the Confederation of European Baseball celebrate the opening of its new headquarters in Zagreb, Croatia and launching of a new website.

Europe has now surpassed Asia with a total of five nations within the Top 20; Asia currently features four nations among the world’s twenty best, according the latest Official World Baseball Rankings released today by the WBSC, following the results of the European championship.

The Netherlands’ continued success on the international stage, including capturing the world title in 2011 and placing 4th at the 2013 World Baseball Classic, has boosted the Dutch’s ranking to fifth in the world – the highest-ever ranking for a European nation.

The Netherlands is now ranking just behind USA, Japan, Cuba and Chinese Taipei, and ahead of other established powerhouses like Canada, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Venezuela and South Korea, which make up the Top 10.

The Top 20 also includes Israel’s historic breakthrough to No. 19 — which has generated media attention in Israel (see Jerusalem Post article: “Israel baseball rises to 19th in world rankings“).

No. 22 ranked Great Britain finished 9th in the European Championship and recently inaugurated the U.K’s newest baseball/softball facility in Essex, which will boost further development in the region.

The European championship also followed the first-ever international baseball competition hosted by France, which showcased the new baseball venue in Senart — which lies a short distance from Paris. The international baseball series — which featured Belgium, France, Netherlands and a professional club from Japan — was an unprecedented event in France.

The European Championship ran from 12-21 September and featured the twelve National Teams of Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, Spain and Sweden.

Italy’s silver at the European showcase locks their ranking at No. 11 in the world and helps better secure their position to be one of the top 12 nations that will qualify for the new flagship event, the Premier 12, which will be launched in November 2015 in Taiwan.

Spain earned the bronze medal in Brno and has risen to No. 16 in the world — Spain’s highest ever ranking.

Co-host Germany placed 5th, behind fellow co-host Czech Republic. The German squad was Europe’s top performer, finishing 9th out of 18 nations, at last month’s high-octane U-15 Baseball World Cup in Mexico, which has elevated Germany to their best-ever world ranking, at No. 17.

The European championship also followed softball’s flagship event, the Women’s Softball World Championship, which was hosted in Europe for the first time in history, in Haarlem, Netherlands last month.

The World Baseball Rankings will be next updated following the Asian Games — Asia’s pinnacle multi-sport spectacle — where baseball and softball are currently being featured on the sports programme together.

10-2-2014 Buenos Aries 2018 Youth Games

Buenos Aires 2018 vows to bring sport to the inner city

Exactly one month after the Closing Ceremony of the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games, all attention has now turned to Buenos Aires 2018 with the first visit of the IOC Coordination Commission headed by four-time Olympian and IOC Member, Frank Fredericks. Outlining their vision, the local organising committee (BAYOGOC) particularly impressed the Commission members with its goal of bringing sport to the inner city for all inhabitants to enjoy and experience, in particular the 2.6 million young people residing in Buenos Aires.

Speaking after the meetings concluding today, IOC Coordination Commission Chair Frank Fredericks said; “Under the expert guidance of CEO Leandro Larrosa, the organisers have really understood the true spirit of the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) – to put young people at its heart. Thanks to the close cooperation Buenos Aires 2018 has with the all levels of government and the Argentinian Olympic Committee (AOC), the organization has made impressive headway with strong foundation plans already underway. With its world-famous passion for sport and culture, we truly believe that Buenos Aires will deliver a phenomenal Youth Olympic Games.”

Significant progress has been made on the venue master plan with a proposed four-cluster concept grouping the sports in a compact framework – all of which the Coordination Commission visited over the course of the two-day meetings. To give a taste of the vibrant culture and spirit of the city, Buenos Aires 2018 has put forward a festival-style concept to feature in each cluster for all spectators to experience. Taking inspiration from the ‘Sports Lab’ inaugurated at Nanjing 2014, these festivals will not only showcase and offer sporting experiences to the visitors, but will also provide family entertainment and cultural activities.

Three major development projects will get underway in 2015 including tenders out for the athletics and aquatic venues and the construction of the Youth Olympic Village (YOV) which will begin early next year. The YOV will be situated in the south of the city, an area of Buenos Aires targeted by the local government in need of urban development. From the YOV, 65 percent of the athletes will be able to walk to their competition venues. In addition, with the recent launch of the city’s metro-bus link, excellent transport links are already in place which will provide fast connections around the city and between venue clusters.

In the true essence of the YOG, the local organising committee are involving young people in all levels of the organization; including an ‘Athlete Commission’ and a newly established ‘Youth Commission’ – a group of young consultants chosen by the AOC from local schools and universities – and the employees within BAYOGOC from junior to director level. All functional areas are now operational and a modest 20 members of staff have been recruited.

In line with their mission to bring sport to the city, many of the 330 local sports clubs within Buenos Aires will be called upon to help with the organization of the Games and to provide training facilities for the athletes. In addition, Buenos Aires 2018 have already made fast progress by not only discussing the project with the National Federations, but using the time in Nanjing this summer to meet with almost all of the International Federations to present their preliminary proposals for sport competitions.

Nationwide, an engagement programme is already being rolled out to target 1.5 million young people to both identify talent and encourage participation in sports launched by the high performance sports body of Argentina.

Leandro Larrosa, CEO of Buenos Aires 2018 commented on the preparations; “This is a life changing project, not only for young athletes, but for future generations in Argentina and we are happy in the knowledge that the IOC Coordination Commission will be by our side to guide us throughout this exciting process.  There is a great social legacy we want to achieve with this Games, we want to get all our kids into sport and inspire kids around the world to do the same.”  He continued, “This last few days working with the IOC has been a great learning curve and has energized the team to deliver our exciting project.”

The six-person IOC Coordination Commission headed by Fredericks is made up of several Olympians including Danka Bartekova, the youngest IOC Member and Young Ambassador from the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010.