6-8-2013 SPY UPDATE

June 8 Spy Softball Update

Women’s National Team Selection Camp
The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America Hall of Fame Complex in Oklahoma City will host the 2013 Women’s National Team Selection Camp June 10-12. Thirty-two athletes will vie for 17 spots on the roster which will be announced on Friday, June 14.  For a list of invitees, please click here.  The schedule for the camp is listed below.  Following selection camp, the 17 athletes selected will compete in three separate events in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Fans in the United States will get an opportunity to see the team in action as they look to defend their 2012 Gold Medal at the World Cup of Softball VIII, July 11- 14, in Oklahoma City.

Following the World Cup, the Women’s National Team is slated to compete July 16-22 at the Canadian Open Fast Pitch International Championship in Surrey, B.C., Canada and August 5-18 at an International Softball Federation (ISF) Women’s World Championship/Pan American Games qualifier in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Schedule

Monday:

–        10 a.m. – 12 p.m.: Warm-up and position drills

–        2 p.m.: Pitching and hitting

–        3 p.m.: Scrimmage games

Tuesday:

–        10 a.m. – 12 p.m.: Warm-up and position drills

–        2 p.m.: Pitching and hitting

–        3 p.m.: Scrimmage games

Wednesday:

–        10 a.m. – 12 p.m.: Warm-up and position drills

–        2 p.m.: Pitching and hitting

–        3 p.m.: Scrimmage games

 

LIVE Streaming

The Selection Camp will be streamed LIVE.  Visit USASoftball.com for more information.

 

Credentials

Journalists who wish to attend Selection Camp are asked to submit their name and outlet to Codi Warren (cwarren@softball.org) by 5 p.m. CT on Sunday, June 9.

 

Media Contacts

Steven Embree

Office: 405-425-3422

Cell: 405-207-1004

Email: sembree@softball.org

Codi Warren

Office: 405-425-3431

Cell: 405-420-2817

Email: cwarren@softball.org

So Cal Athletics

June 14th/16th

Los Alamitos High School

3591 Cerritos Ave 90720-2485

 

                   Pool A                               Pool B

              

1)So Cal Athletics                        1) OC Batbusters

2)Firecrackers                              2) Corona Angels

3)Tx Impact                                  3) Tx Glory

4)Az. Storm                                   4) East Cobb Bullets

5)Wichita Mustangs                     5) Sorcerer

6)Explosion                                    6) So Cal Choppers

 

Friday Pool Play

 

Time

Field 1

Field 2

  11:15

B4 – B6

A5 – A6

    1:00

A1 – A6

A5 – A4

    2:45

B1 – B6

B4 – B2

    4:30

A1 – A3

A4 – A2

    6:15

B1 – B2

B5 – B3

 

Saturday Pool Play

 

Time

Field 1

Field 2

  7:45

B1 – B4

B5 – B6

  9:30

B6 – B3

B2 – B5

11:15

B1 – B3

B4 – B5

  1:00

A1 – A4

B2 – B3

  2:45

A1 – A5

A2 – A3

  4:30

A2 – A6

A4 – A3

  6:15

A2 – A5

A6 – A3

 

PEOPLE IN THE NEWS
Former Tennessee Vol Shannon Doepking has become head coach at Amherst.

Three standout stars of national champion Oklahoma have accepted invitations to the national team camp: Keilani Ricketts, Lauren Chamberlain, and Desiree Martinez..

Oklahoma pitcher Michelle Gascoigne has signed a contract with the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch League, it was announced Saturday. Her signing marks the second in as many days for an OU senior as catcher Jessica Shults agreed to terms with the USSSA Pride on Friday. Gascoigne, chosen by Chicago with the seventh overall pick in the April 1 NPF Draft, ended her Oklahoma career on Tuesday night by pitching the team to its second national championship in program history. The Benicia, Calif., native struck out 12 in a three-hit shutout in game two against Tennessee in the Championship Series of the 2013 Women’s College World Series. She finished the year as one of 10 finalists for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year and led the nation with a 0.88 earned run average, the lowest mark by any pitcher since 2009. Gascoigne was 19-3 with 210 strikeouts and just 29 walks in 136.0 innings pitched.

Less than 48 hours after her Women’s College World Series national championship win, the USSSA Pride signed University of Oklahoma catcher Jessica Shults to a two-year deal. Shults and the Oklahoma Sooners swept the University of Tennessee Lady Vols in a best-of-three series in Oklahoma City Monday and Tuesday. Shults, who hails from Valencia, Calif., was named to the 2013 All-Big 12 Defensive Team as well as a 2012 First-Team NFCA All-American and 2011 and 2010 NFCA Second-Team All-American. Throughout her college career at OU, Shults hit .342 with 239 hits, 230 RBIs, a Big 12-record 61 homeruns and a .995 fielding percentage. She started all 61 games her senior season. Her quick glove and fearlessness behind the plate made her a hot defensive prospect for the Pride.

 

Knoxville Sets the Mark for WCWS Finals

ESPN’s exclusive coverage of the Women’s College World Series (WCWS) ended with a national championship title for Oklahoma over Tennessee and record-breaking metered market ratings in both home towns. Knoxville delivered the highest metered market rating for any WCWS telecast on ESPN2 since 2007*, averaging an 11.9 rating for Game 1 of the Finals. The current 2007 record, a 15.3 metered market rating, is also held by Knoxville when Tennessee faced Arizona in the Finals.

In addition, Game 1 and Game 2 set local Oklahoma City records for ESPN2 and ESPN, respectively. The telecasts averaged a 6.6 metered market rating for Game 1 and a 6.7 for Game 2 in Oklahoma City – the highest ratings for WCWS games in Oklahoma ever on either network. Game 2 in Knoxville averaged a 7.8.

Approximately 1.2 million viewers around the nation tuned in for the 12-inning Oklahoma victory in Game 1 on ESPN2 and 1,315,000 for Game 2 on ESPN.

 

NPF GAMES
BANDITS 5, RACERS O
ROSEMONT, Ill. – Rookie pitcher Mel Dumezich tossed a complete four-hit shutout in her Bandits debut, striking out seven. The Bandits offense was on fire once again tonight as the squad went on to defeat the Racers 5-0.

 

“It’s an honor to be out here with all these great athletes,” said Dumezich. “Hopefully I’ll bring a different look to the Bandits this season and help the team win another championship.”

 

Lisa Norris toed the rubber for Akron and was relieved by Rachele Fico and Jen Mineau.

 

The Bandits offense started out strong again tonight with a run in the bottom of the first. Amber Patton got on base with a single up the middle and she was able to score when Racer’s shortstop Bridgette Del Ponte dropped Kristen Butler’s infield pop up.Dumezich pitched her way out of a jam in the bottom of the second, striking out a pair with the bases loaded to preserve the Bandits lead.

 

The Bandits extended their lead in the bottom of the second after Megan Wiggins hit a deep three-run homerun to dead center, scoring Vicky Galindo and Kimi Pohlman and extending the lead to 4-0.

The offensive rally continued after Patton singled, stole second and was brought home off Alisa Goler’s RBI single up the middle, making the score 5-0 heading into the third inning.

After highlighting the second with a homerun, Wiggins took over on defense in the third to rob Bri Hesson of a hit with a diving catch and doubling up Sam Marder at first base.

 

“I have been working really hard, coming off the Japan season, I’m still in shape and seeing the ball well,” said Wiggins. “I’m just trying to carry over my success in Japan and be productive for the Bandits.

 

“I’m really proud of this team and impressed with the newcomers, you can’t even tell they are rookies. We had a lot of potential last year and so far we’re looking really good with a lot of potential again this year so I am looking forward to it.”

 

The Bandits made outstanding defensive plays throughout the entire game to keep the Racers scoreless, giving Dumezich her first career victory and the Bandits their second win of the season.

The Bandits and Racers return to action tomorrow night at The Ballpark at Rosemont for the third game of the series. First pitch is set for 7:35 p.m. -CHI-

 

Game notes:

• After two games, Chicago is outscoring opponents by a 12-1 margin.

• Megan Wiggins’ .571 batting average and 7 RBI’s lead the league.

• First career hits for Nerissa Myers and Kimi Pohlman

• Mel Dumezich picked up her first career win

• Attendance: 654

 

BANDITS 14, RACERS 0
ROSEMONT, Ill. – Monica Abbott made her first start of the 2013 season pitching an impressive complete game shutout while only allowing one hit and picking up 11 strikeouts. The Bandits offense stayed red-hot scoring 14 runs off 16 hits.

 

Chicago jumped off to an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first after Amber Patton singled and was joined by Alisa Goler who doubled to deep left center. Kristin Butler stepped up to bat and delivered an RBI single to left allowing Patton to score.

 

”It’s always great when you can get a lot of players in for live at-bats,” said Goler. “Monica was Monica, she threw a gem. I thought it was a great game all around. The goal is to play clean softball so if you can avoid errors your chances are going to be pretty good. I think with the new playoff format, you’ll see us turn it up a little knowing each game counts.”

 

Eri Yamada and Kazuki Watanabe, the players the Bandits acquired from Japan, made their debuts in a Chicago uniform. Yamada started in left field while Watanabe was behind the plate.

 

“It’s amazing to play with the Japan players,” said Goler. “They work so hard and have been open to everything. Communicating with them is interesting, there’s a lot of hand signals but I’m trying to learn phrases so we’ll see if it will work.”

 

Yamada made her debut at bat hitting a sac-fly which allowed Goler to score, giving the Bandits an early lead and Yamada her first RBI in the NPF.

 

The Bandits went on an offensive surge in the bottom of the second, scoring nine runs. Tammy Williams started it off with a double and was batted in by Megan Wiggins’ two-run homerun, her second of the season.

 

Yamada then stepped up to bat with the bases loaded and delivered a fielder’s choice RBI that allowed Patton to score and gave Yamada her second RBI of the night.

 

After Maggie Hull was hit by pitch the bases were still loaded and Danielle Zymkowitz delivered a single, which scored Goler. Williams continued the rally with her second hit of the night, a single that scored Yamada.

 

Watanabe recorded her first career RBI after her hit scored Hull. Wiggins stepped up to bat again with a two-run double, allowing Williams and Zymkowitz to score. Watanabe then scored her first run for the Bandits off Patton’s RBI single to make the score 11-0 heading into the third.

 

Brittany Cervantes extended the lead, 12-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning after her towering homerun cleared the left field wall.

 

The Bandits concluded their scoring in the bottom of the sixth when Mel Dumezich hit a single with the bases loaded scoring Zymkowitz and Nerissa Myers and increasing the Chicago lead, 14-0.

 

The Bandits and Racers return to the Ballpark at Rosemont Saturday, June 8 for the fourth and final game of the four-game series. First pitch is set for 7:35 pm.

 

 

OSTERMAN BEGINS FINAL CAMPAIGN
by Krista Tonnesen @yokrista

Cat Osterman doesn’t remember her first professional strikeout. She remembers the game and she remembers that it was exciting, but she doesn’t remember the strikeout itself. Understandable, considering she’s recorded 645 more since then. With that many, they all start to run together after a while.

For the record, it came in an exciting 12-inning pitching duel (and 1-0 win) against Jennie Finch and the Chicago Bandits in Osterman’s National Pro Fastpitch debut in 2007. So did her next 23.

“It was one of the best games I’ve been a part of,” Osterman, 30, said. “That game was the way to start a career.”

Six years later, that exciting career is coming to an end; Cat Osterman is retiring from professional softball at the end of this season.

“I’ve always known that I wanted to hang it up on my own terms,” she said. “I didn’t want to keep playing much past 30 because I wanted to experience more things in life.”

Honestly, Osterman thought she’d already be done by now. She planned for the 2012 London Olympics, which would be her third Olympic games (she won a gold medal in 2004 and silver in 2008), to be her last hurrah as a player, but when baseball and softball were voted out of the summer games, she was left with two options: call it quits anyway or keep playing. Ultimately, she decided to play with the Pride for another season, but that would be it.

The hardest part of leaving the game, she says, will be leaving her teammates. She’s played with Pride shortstop Natasha Watley for 12 years, outfielder Kelly Kretschman for 11 and catcher Megan Willis, who Osterman calls one of her best friends and her backbone, since college.

“For a lot of us, we’ve been together for more than just one or two summers,” she said. “It’s been years and years and years. It’s going to be different to be watching them and not participating. It’s going to be like a permanent offseason.”

In the actual offseason, Osterman is an assistant coach for the Division II St. Edward’s University Hilltoppers in Austin, Texas, and definitely sees coaching as her next career path. As much as she loves the game, the decision to retire wasn’t necessarily hard.

“I think the thought of retiring became easier this year because I really fell in love with coaching and my job [at St. Edward’s],” she said. “As a coach, I wanted to be able to give that my full attention.”

St. Edward’s is just five miles from the University of Texas, where Osterman played her college ball. The Houston native could have gone out to the west coast to play, where the big NCAA softball powerhouses were at the time, but chose instead to play for the Longhorns in her home state. The biggest reason was to be close to her family.

“My dad caught for me my whole career, and I wanted to make sure he could see me play,” she said. “He wanted me to go wherever I wanted to. He said, ‘Two and a half hour drive or two and a half hour plane ride, I can figure it out.’”

Her competitive nature also played a huge part in her decision. “I really wanted to do something different. I wanted to try to beat the big schools, not just join them. If I could stay home and win Texas’ first national championship, that would be pretty cool.”

Osterman and the Longhorns didn’t win a national title, but she did make it to the Women’s College World Series three times, broke virtually every Longhorn and Big 12 Conference pitching record (many of which she still holds today) and was a four-time All-American.

While the USSSA Pride and professional softball may be losing one Longhorn pitcher at the end of the season, they just gained a new one for 2013. Texas right hander Blaire Luna, who just lead her team to 51 wins and a WCWS berth, just signed a two-year deal with the Pride.

“It’s definitely exciting,” Osterman said. “I got to watch her a lot, and she’s a very, very talented pitcher. I’m excited to share the circle with her.”

Last year, Osterman was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame, an honor she shares with legends such as Troy Aikman, Mia Hamm, Shaquille O’Neal, Emmitt Smith, Nolan Ryan and one of her biggest athletic inspirations, former Houston Astros player Craig Biggio. According to Osterman, “He was one of the best to play baseball the way it’s supposed to be played, to hustle it out. He’s definitely one of the athletes I really look up to.”

Though her playing career will come to an end after the 2013 Pride season, Cat Osterman is sure to be a household name for sports fans for years to come. Her wish? That she’ll be remembered, not for all of her wins or the records she set, but for her passion for softball.

“I hope that when people think of me, they can say that when they watched me play, they could see how much I loved to compete in this game and that I worked hard at it,” Osterman says.

There is no question that Cat Osterman has made an impact on professional softball and the sport in general. Whether she’s in the pitching circle or coaching from behind the baselines, it’s safe to say she’s created a legacy for herself and will go down as one of the greatest players to ever step foot on the clay.

Osterman and the Pride begin their journey towards winning the Cowles Cup Sunday, June 8th at 8:05 PM ET. Tickets for the contest at Osceola County Stadium are available on USSSAPride.com, and the game can be seen live in High Definition on USSSALive.com.

 

 

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