Category Archives: ESPN NCAA

7-30-2016 PGF Innovations Boost Fastpitch Softball

Two events hosted Friday night by Premier Girls Fastpitch significantly expanded horizons for18U girls while yielding a sharp focus on players who could be selected for the 2020 USA Olympic Team.

The PGF national championship matched two traditional Gold-level powerhouses: Firecrackers Rico and Cruisers. The Firecrackers, coached by Tony Rico, defeated the Cruisers coached by Mel Siever, 2-0.  Three hits each with a strong performance by Katherine Vestal who pitched out of two bases loaded jams.

Later, the PGF inaugural All American seniors game was won by the West squad 4-3 on a walkoff single bottom 7th.  The West squad was coached by Jennie Finch, with assistants Toni Mascarenas and Crystyl Bustos.  The East squad was coached by Jennie Ritter, with Garland Cooper and Suzy Brazney.

Significantly for the long term interests of the sport, ESPN broadcast both games live.

Equally significant, the stadium at Bill Barber Park in Irvine was full both games.

US international interests are in good hands.  The national team fielded by USA Softball won Gold at its most recent tournament and a relatively young squad will be in the mix for 2020 berths with the youngsters showcased tonight.

Virtually all players in the All American game are committed, with players entering this fall into several dominant college programs including national champion Oklahoma.

 

EAST vs. WEST TEAMS – FINAL HIGH SCHOOL ALL AMERICAN SELECTIONS

Garland Cooper Coached by Jennie Finch
Jennie Ritter Toni Mascarenas
Suzy Brazney Crystal Bustos
First Name Last Name State Position College First Name Last Name State Position College
Nicole Mendes TX P/1B Oklahoma Mia Camuso CA 1B/OF Oregon
Caroline Hedgcock IL P Arkansas Amanda Doyle CA Inf LSU
Kendyl Lindaman IA C Minnesota Dejah Mulipola CA C Arizona
Jordan Roberts FL C Florida Montana Dixon CA C Stanford
Kayla Konwent WI C/3B Wisconsin Tristen Edwards CA OF/C Nebraska
Shannon Rhodes TX 3B/2B Oregon Jessica Harper CA Inf Arizona
Morgan Mc Callum S Kentucky Bradie Fillmore ID SS/P Cal
Taylor Ellis TX MI Baylor Madilyn Nickles CA P/UT UCLA
Claire Jenkins AL MI Alabama Nicole Bates CA SS Washington
Madison Naujokas IL MI JMU Mackenzie Boesel CA SS S. Carolina
Alissa Dalton TX MI/3B Oklahoma Madison Uden AZ MI Michigan
Miranda Elish IN P Oregon Nerissa Eason CA P Oregon St.
Katie Chronister FL P Florida Mariah Lopez CA P Oklahoma
Maggie Balint PA P Oregon Alyssa Loza CA P/1B ASU
Jacquelyn Switzer GA OF Florida Aaliyah Jordan CA OF UCLA
Ciara Bryan GA OF/3B Georgia Jenna Holcomb CA OF Tennessee
Elissa Brown AL Inf/OF Alabama Kelsie Whitmore CA OF/MI Fullerton
Hannah Edwards PA OF Pitt Alyssa Barrera CA OF/2B Utah
Kelbi Fortenberry TX OF/MI TX A&M Unable to Attend
Jaime Hoover GA C/3B Florida Unable to Attend
Bailey Hemphill LA C Alabama Unable to Attend

Spy could not attend and did not have a lineup so more detail was not available.

7-9-2016 USA Women Advance to Championship

USA Softball Women’s National Team set to face Japan in Gold Medal Game at World Cup of Softball XI; USA Softball Women’s Elite Team set for Bronze Medal matchup

 

OKLAHOMA CITY –  The USA Softball Women’s National Team will look to defend its World Cup of Softball title on Sunday at 7 p.m. CT with a match up against Japan, who sealed their spot in the Gold Medal Game after defeating the USA Softball Women’s Elite Team 3-2 earlier in the day.  Closing out pool play tomorrow morning at 9:30 a.m. against Venezuela, Team USA locked up the No. 1 seed with two wins today, including an 8-1 (five innings) win over the Netherlands and an 11-0 (four innings) win over China.  Also seeing action in the day was the USA Softball Women’s Elite Team, who had a 1-1 outing on the day.  The USA Elite picked up a 13-0 (four inning) shutout over New Zealand in their first game of the day before dropping a 3-2 thriller to Japan.

 

Click here for a game schedule for Championship Sunday at the World Cup of Softball XI

 

USA Elite 13, New Zealand 0 (four innings)

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The USA Softball Women’s Elite Team continued their strong offensive showing at the World Cup of Softball XI in a 13-0, four inning win over New Zealand in their first game of the day.  Led by two home runs from Amanda Lorenz (Moorpark, Calif.), the USA Elite combined for 11 hits.

 

Cheridan Hawkins (Anderson, Calif.) got the start in the circle for the USA Elite, retiring back-to-back batters with a strikeout before a fly ball to Brooke Vines in left field for the third out of the inning.  Setting the pace for the U.S. offense, Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif.) led things off with a walk.  A bobble on a sac bunt by Allexis Bennett (Corona, Calif.) allowed Aguilar to reach second safely to put two runners on for Lorenz.  Lorenz answered the challenge, blasting a ball deep over the left field fence for a three-run home run.  A double, hit batter and single loaded the bases for Annie Aldrete (Monterey, Calif.), and a fielder’s choice allowed the fourth run of the inning to score.

 

New Zealand would get their first runner of the game on base in the top of the second inning, but the U.S. defense put in work with a double play and ground out to bring their offense back to the plate.  Emily Griggs (Wichita, Kan.) led off with a single to center and swiped second to put a runner in scoring position.  After advancing to third on a passed ball with two outs, a walk to Kristen Brown (Levittown, N.Y.) put runners on the corner.  Madilyn Nickles (Merced, Calif.) punched a ball through the infield for an RBI single to extend the lead to 5-0.

 

A single in the top of the third put the sole runner of the at-bat on for New Zealand, keeping the score at 5-0, USA Elite.  In the bottom of the frame, the USA Elite offense erupted for an eight-run inning.  Starting off the rally was Brooke Vines (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.), who roped a ball to the outfield for the first run of the at-bat.  Vines would score the second run of the game on a passed ball.  One batter later, Lorenz would connect for her second home run of the game to make it a 9-0, USA Elite lead.  The scoring continued with a bases loaded walk and an Aguilar single.

 

Up 13-0 through three innings of play, Hawkins returned to the circle needing just three outs to clinch the “W”.  Retiring the first batter with a fly ball, a walk would put a runner on base, but two more fly outs would end the game with the USA Elite taking away the shutout win.

 

Hawkins earned the win for the USA Elite, going the distance with two strikeouts and just one hit through her four innings of work.  Offensively, Lorenz racked up five RBI in a 2-for-3 outing, both hits coming via the home run.

 

USA 8, Netherlands 1 (five innings)

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A perfect 4-for-4 outing for Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) paved the way to a Team USA 8-1 (five innings) win over the Netherlands in the annual “Pink Out” game at the World Cup of Softball XI.  McCleney was flawless at the plate, collecting three singles and a walk off double in the bottom of the fifth inning.

 

USA’s starter Ally Carda (Elk Grove, Calif.) retired the Netherlands with three straight strikeouts to bring the potent U.S. offense to the plate.  Wasting no time, Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) reached on an infield single and swiped second to get into scoring position.  Back-to-back walks to Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) and Bianka Bell (Tampa, Fla.) loaded the bases, but a popup kept them at bay.  They didn’t stay put long, as a bases loaded walk to Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.) plated the first run of the game for the U.S.

 

Another run would cross the plate on a ground ball, fielder’s choice from Kasey Cooper (Dothan, Ala.), before a walk to Delaney Spaulding (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) loaded the bases for the second time in the inning.  Making her first start of the World Cup of Softball, Paige Halstead (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) roped the ball down the left field line for a two-run single, giving the U.S. a 4-0 lead.

 

Two strikeouts from Carda in the circle and a ground out to third and the U.S. stepped back to the plate.  After Cooper reached on a defensive miscue, Jazmyn Jackson (San Jose, Calif.) connected for the long ball over center field to put the U.S. up 7-0.

 

The Netherlands would get on the board in the top of the fourth inning after back-to-back singles with two outs and a fielding error would allow the runner to cross the plate.  The game would hold at a 7-1, U.S. lead until the bottom of the fifth.  Halstead singled to center with one out and was lifted for a pinch runner in Janie Takeda (Placentia, Calif.).  A single from Jackson would put two runners on for McCleney, who hit a deep fly ball to right field to plate the go ahead run.

 

Japan 3, USA Elite 2

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The USA Softball Women’s Elite Team suffered their first loss at the World Cup of Softball XI in a 3-2 decision to Japan.  It was a nail biter of a game, as both teams stayed tied up through the seventh inning with Japan earning the eventual walk-off win.

 

“I’m proud of the girls and the way they competed,” said Head Coach Tairia Flowers (Tucson, Ariz.).  “We put ourselves in a position to win the game, and just fell short on a couple of execution points.  For this being a lot of the team’s first international experience, and for them to go toe-to-toe with a team like Japan, speaks volumes about their talent.”

 

Japan struck first in the bottom of the first inning after Eri Yamada doubled with a runner on third to make it a 1-0 ball game.  The USA Elite bats were silenced in their first two outings before loading the bases in the top of the third as they looked to get a rally going.  Starting with a leadoff single from Astin Donovan (Guilford, Conn.), Allexis Bennett (Corona, Calif.) reached safely on an infield single and Bailey Landry (Prairieville, La.) singled to put three U.S. runners on.  Japan’s Yamato Fujita issued two strikeouts and a ground out to end the threat.

 

The bats were silenced for both sides through the third until the USA Elite took the lead in the top of the fourth.  Mysha Sataraka (Honolulu, Hawaii) singled with one out to put a runner on base for Madeline Jelenicki (Santa Clarita, Calif.), who answered the call with a two-run shot over the center field fence.  The 2-1 lead did not last long, however, as a defensive miscue allowed a runner to score to tie the game up at 2-2.

 

Both sides would threaten to regain the lead through the next few innings, with both offenses stranding runners through the sixth innings.  Heading to the top of the seventh tied up a two runs each, USA Elite got their offense going as Amanda Lorenz (Moorpark, Calif.) hit a one-out double to put a runner in scoring position.  Sataraka was hit by a pitch to put two runners on, but a fly out and a hard hit line drive was caught to keep the runners from advancing.

 

After a leadoff double from Yu Yamamoto at the top of the Japanese lineup, Carley Hoover (Clemson, S.C.) entered the circle in relief.  Hoover retired the next batter with a ground out to Sam Fischer (Simi Valley, Calif.) at first, allowing Yamamoto advanced to third.  Japan would earn the walk-off win, however, after a ground ball back to Hoover in the circle as Yamamoto slid into home safely.

 

With the loss, the USA Elite earned the No. 2 overall seed in Pool B and will face the winner of Australia vs Puerto Rico tomorrow at 4 p.m. CT. for the Bronze Medal Game.

 

“We had a lot of opportunities to score tonight, which doesn’t happen a lot against Japan,” said Fischer.  “We didn’t push the runs across, but had opportunities and that’s what we’ll take into tomorrow.  We have runs to score.”

 

USA 11, China 0 (four innings)

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Nine runs through the first three innings helped lead Team USA to an 11-0 (four inning) win over China.  Leading the way for the U.S. at the plate was Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.), who had a 2-for-2 outing with a home run and two RBI.

 

USA’s offense got to work from the start as Raven Chavanne (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) did what she does best with a leadoff single.  After appearing to tweak something as she ran through the bag, Chavanne left the game with Kasey Cooper (Dothan, Ala.) entering the game in her place.  Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) beat out a bunt to put two on for the U.S. before a fielding error on a bunt by Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) loaded the bases for the Eagles.  A walk to Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich.) plated the first run of the game for Team USA, and Arioto tacked on another run with a sac fly.  The U.S. added another run after Delaney Spaulding (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) singled to bring Moultrie home.

 

Delanie Gourley (Lakeside, Calif.) got the start in the circle for the U.S., and kept China’s bat at bay with a pair of pop outs and a strikeout to bring the U.S. offense to the plate.  Another four runs were tacked on by the Red, White and Blue in the top of the second as Janie Takeda (Placentia, Calif.) singled and came around to score on a double by Cooper.  With Cooper on second, Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) blasted a ball over the right field fence for a two-run home run to extend the lead to 6-0.  Two batters later, Arioto followed up with a solo shot to make it a 7-0, USA ball game.

 

The U.S. offense continued to push, tacking on another two runs in the top of the third inning after back-to-back doubles from Cooper and Stewart.  Team USA would seal the run-rule win in the top of the fourth after Arioto reached on a one-out single, moved to third on a double by McCleney and scored on an RBI single from Spaulding.  McCleney would also cross the plate after a wild pitch, extending USA’s lead to 11-0.

 

Needing just three outs to seal the win, Jessica Moore (Sutter, Calif.) entered the circle in relief of Gourley, and retired the side with a pair of strikeouts and a ground out.  With the win, Team USA earned the No. 1 overall seed in Pool A, and will face Japan in the Gold Medal Game tomorrow at 7 p.m. CT.

 

“We felt good coming into the game,” said Moultrie.  “Coach Eriksen had worked with us all one on one earlier in the day, giving us different approaches to take to the plate.  We just tried to stay short, and make adjustments that will help us later through the summer.”

 

Great tickets are still available for the World Cup of Softball XI, and can be purchased outside the ASA Hall of Fame Complex at the Ticket Booth. For complete coverage of Border Battle VIII and the World Cup of Softball XI including bios, rosters, live stats, streaming and results log on to ASAUSASoftball.com.

 

7-5-2016 USA Softball teams

USA Softball Women’s and Elite Teams dominate in opening games of the World Cup of Softball XI; USA Softball Slow Pitch National Team earns 25-24 win in Slow Pitch Showdown

OKLAHOMA CITY – The World Cup of Softball XI action officially kicked off today as teams battled each other and the heat at the ASA Hall of Fame Complex – OGE Energy Field – INTEGRIS Field. Highlighting the day was a 13-2 (four inning) run-rule victory by the USA Softball Women’s Elite Team and a 11-1 (four inning) win for the USA Softball Women’s National Team. Also seeing action today during Border Battle VIII, the USA Softball Slow Pitch National Team and the USA Softball Men’s Futures Slow Pitch National Team faced off in the fourth-annual Slow Pitch Showdown, with the Slow Pitch National Team earning the 25-24 win. For the day, the Slow Pitch National Team went 1-1, while the USA Futures also went 1-1.

Click here for box scores for all World Cup of Softball XI games

Click here for box scores for all Border Battle VIII games

USA Elite 13, Czech Republic 2 (four innings)

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The USA Softball Women’s Elite Team utilized a nine-run, second inning to catapult them to a 13-2 (four inning) win over Czech Republic in their first competition of the 2016 season. Behind the hot bat of Hannah Flippen (Bonita, Calif.), the U.S. hit three home runs en route to the win.

“The team did a good job of coming out and being ready to go,” said Head Coach Tairia Flowers (Tucson, Ariz.). “It’s the first true international game for a lot of these athletes, so I was excited to see some great defensive plays and at-bats during the game. We had a few jitters in the first inning, but they did a great job of locking in and making something happen in that second inning.”

Paige Lowary (Grimes, Iowa) got the start in the circle for the U.S. and her defense put in work with a pair of groundouts to record the first two outs. A walk put the first runner of the game on base, but was caught stealing as Madeline Jelenicki (Santa Clarita, Calif.) fired the ball to second to get the final out in the top of the first. Team USA would put a runner on base in the bottom half of the frame as Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif.) reached on a two-out walk, but a fly ball to center kept the game tied at 0-0 through one inning of play.

The Czech Republic would get two runners on base in the top of the second off a defensive miscue and a double, but Lowary fired back with a pair of strikeouts to end the threat and keep Czech Republic off the board. The scoring got started for the Red, White and Blue in the bottom of the second, as Flippen led off the at-bat with a solo shot. A walk to Mysha Sataraka (Honolulu, Hawaii) put the next runner on for the U.S., before Jelenicki hit the second home run of the inning to plate another two runs.

“Today went really well and we hit the ball like crazy,” said Flippen. “Getting to wear the USA jersey is a huge accomplishment, and then to come out and win our first game, it was a great feeling.”

A walk to Bailey Landry (Prairieville, La.) would prompt a pitching change for the Czech Republic as Martina Blahova entered in relief for starter Veronika Peckova. Facing her first batter, Blahova walked Allexis Bennett (Corona, Calif.) and Astin Donovan (Guilford, Conn.) bunted for a single to load the bases. Three more runs for the U.S. would score as an illegal pitch would bring home Landry before Bennett and Donovan scored on a passed ball. Three-straight walks to Aguilar, Sam Fischer (Simi Valley, Calif.) and Flippen loaded the bases for the second time in the inning as Sataraka hit a sac-fly to plate Aguilar for run number seven. The U.S. would plate their last run of the inning when Fischer took advantage of a passed ball. After two innings of play, the USA Elite team led 9-0.

It was a three-up and three-down inning for Lowary in the circle as she recorded a pair of strikeouts and a groundout to bring the U.S. back to the plate. Landry led off the bottom of the third with a single to right field, and Bennett cleared the bases with a blast over right field.

The Czech Republic would score two runs in the top of the fourth inning as Tereza Jakesova and Tereza Pochobradska came around on a single and a fielder’s choice. Leading 11-2 entering the bottom of the fourth, the U.S. would earn the win via the run-rule as Bennett tripled to center to score Brooke Vines (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.) and Landry.

USA 11, Philippines 1 (four innings)

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Team USA jumped out to an early lead in their first game of the World Cup of Softball XI as the Eagles captured an 11-1 (four inning) win over the Philippines. The U.S. rallied from a 1-0 deficit in the bottom of the first, combining for 12 hits, including home runs from Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.), Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) and Delaney Spaulding (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.).

“It’s a work in progress and we’ve still got a long way to go,” said Head Coach Ken Eriksen (Tampa, Fla.). “It’s nice to get the first game under your belt. Our defense did a great job of getting out of the first inning with only one run allowed. Jess Moore did a fantastic job of bearing down on that third out, and Raven Chavanne came up and got things going for our offense. The team felt good today.”

The Philippines would jump on the board in the top of the first inning after a walk and hit-by-pitch put two runners on base with one out. A single to center loaded the bases, and a ground ball brought in a run. The U.S. responded in the bottom half of the frame when Raven Chavanne (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) got the offense going with a leadoff double and advanced to third on a throwing error. Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) put runners on the corner, beating out a high throw to first base before swiping second to put both runners in scoring position. Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) tied up the game with a ground ball, plating Chavanne and advancing McCleney to third. A walk to Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich.) put runners on the corners again for the U.S., before Arioto cleared the bases with a blast over the left field fence.

Not to be outdone, Moultrie followed with a solo shot to plate run number five of the inning. A single from Spaulding continued the momentum and an Aubree Munro (Brea, Calif.) double scored the last run of the at-bat for the U.S. After one inning of play, Team USA held a 6-1 lead.

“The energy that we had in the dugout, especially coming from behind, was great,” said Chidester. “We went through the entire lineup and everyone did their part. The team really came together to put up six runs to set the tone. We kept up the energy and fought all the way through.”

Philippines was retired in order in the top of the second to bring the U.S. back to the plate. The Red, White and Blue would get base runners on in the bottom half of the inning, but were kept from adding to their lead. The U.S. had a pitching change in the top of the third, as Ally Carda (Elk Grove, Calif.) entered for U.S. starter Jessica Moore (Sutter, Calif.). Carda continued to stifle the Philippines offense, letting her defense work behind her to keep the game at 6-1, USA.

Spaulding sparked the offense in the bottom of the third inning with a leadoff solo home run. Another two runs would get added to the U.S. lead as Janie Takeda (Placentia, Calif.) and Kasey Cooper (Dothan, Ala.) came around to score on a double from Stewart to extend the lead to 9-1.

After retiring the side in order in the top of the fourth, Team USA came back to the plate needing just two runs to capture the win. The U.S. did just that, as Arioto and Bianka Bell (Tampa, Fla.) scored on a single from Cooper to give the Eagles the 11-1 (four inning) victory.

Slow Pitch Showdown

USA 25, USA Futures 24

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The USA Softball Slow Pitch National Team utilized four home runs in the bottom of the seventh to keep bragging rights over the USA Futures as they earned the walk-off 25-24 win.

The USA Futures struck first in the top of the first inning before the Slow Pitch National Team took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the frame. A string of singles in the top of the second inning gave the USA Futures a 4-2 lead, 4-2 before a pair of two-run home runs by the Slow Pitch National Team regained the lead for the Slow Pitch National Team, 6-4.

Kyle Pearson (Stonewall, La.) hit a solo shot in the top of the third to bring the game within one, but a four-run third inning by the Slow Pitch National Team extended their lead to 10-5. Both teams exploded offensively as the USA Futures plated five runs and the Slow Pitch National Team put up six runs in the fourth inning.

Both sides were held scoreless in the fifth, with the Slow Pitch National Team entering the sixth with a 16-10 lead. The USA Futures would respond, capitalizing on six home runs to go up 22-16. The Slow Pitch National Team would get within two on a home run from Steve Whaley (Richardson, Texas) and an RBI single from Kevin Kennington (Lake City, Fla.).

Jeremy Yates (Lake City, Fla.) hit a two-run shot in the top of the seventh inning to extend the USA Futures lead to 24-20. Trailing by four, the Slow Pitch National Team put up five runs with the help of four long balls to earn the 25-24 win.

The USA Softball Slow Pitch National Team and the USA Softball Men’s Futures Slow Pitch National Team return for the final day of Border Battle VIII action tomorrow, including the highly-anticipated Border Battle matchup between the USA Softball Slow Pitch National Team and Team Canada.

Notable July 5 performances

Australia 7, Netherlands 2

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Erin Thras had two extra base hits, sparking Australia to a 7-2 victory over the Netherlands in their opening game of the World Cup of Softball XI. Vanessa Stokes put together a nice outing in the circle for the Aussies, issuing just one hit and two walks while striking out three during her four innings of work. Offensively, Australia’s Stacey Porter, Rachel Lack and Thras combined for six hits and four RBI.

The game was never in doubt after the second, as Australia scored one run on a groundout by Stacey McManus. Australia also pushed one run across in each of the third, fourth and fifth innings. Two runs in the top of the sixth helped the Netherlands close its deficit to 4-2. An RBI triple by Soclania Van Gurp and an RBI single by Jessie Van Aalst put the Netherlands within two of Australia, but Australia quickly matched Netherlands’ strong inning with a three-run inning of its own in the sixth. Australia scored on an RBI single by Chelsea Forkin and a two-run home run by Thras.

Puerto Rico 3, Venezuela 2

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Puerto Rico outlasted Venezuela on Tuesday after five lead changes to earn the 3-2 win thanks to a strong sixth inning. Puerto Rico’s Meghan King was strong in the circle, stifling Venezuela’s offense and allowing just two hits while striking out four batters in her three innings of work.

In the bottom of the first, Venezuela grabbed the early lead, 1-0. Venezuela’s threat began with a single by Maria Soto. A single by Yuruby Alicart then moved Maria Soto from first to third before a ground ball plated the run. Puerto Rico tied the game in the top of the second on an RBI single from Luz Feliciano.

The game stayed tied at 1-1 until the fifth inning, when Venezuela’s Yaicey Sojo hit a solo home run to give Venezuela a 2-1 lead. A key sixth-inning rally gave Puerto Rico the lead for good, as Karla Claudio hit an RBI single. Elicia D’Orazio would also come around to score on a defensive miscue to give Puerto Rico the eventual 3-2 win.

Great tickets are still available for the Border Battle VIII and World Cup of Softball XI, and can be purchased outside the ASA Hall of Fame Complex at the Ticket Booth. For complete coverage of Border Battle VIII and the World Cup of Softball XI including bios, rosters, live stats, streaming and results log on to ASAUSASoftball.com.

About ASA/USA Softball
Founded in 1933, the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball is the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. One of the nation’s largest sports organizations, ASA/USA Softball sanctions competition in every state through a network of 70 local associations and has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 165,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than 2.2 million. ASA/USA is responsible for training, equipping and promoting the six USA Softball National Teams that compete in international and domestic competitions. The USA Softball Women’s National Team is one of only two women’s sports involved in the Olympic movement to capture three consecutive gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won nine World Championship titles as well as claimed eight World Cup of Softball titles. For more information about ASA/USA Softball, please visit http://www.asausasoftball.com/.

About the World Baseball Softball Confederation

Headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland — the Olympic Capital — the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) is the world governing body for baseball and softball. WBSC has 213 National Federation and Associate Members in 142 countries and territories across Asia, Africa, Americas, Europe and Oceania, which represent a united baseball/softball sports movement that encompasses over 65 million athletes and attracts approximately 150 million fans to stadiums worldwide annually.

The WBSC also governs all international competitions involving official National Teams. The WBSC oversees the Softball World Championships (Men, Women, U-19 Men, and U-19 Women), Premier12, World Baseball Classic, and Baseball World Cups (U-12, U-15, U-18, U-23 and Women’s).

For further information, please go to www.WBSC.org or follow the WBSC on Twitter at @WBSC.

7-4-2016 NEW SUPER REGIONAL FORMAT

NCAA changes format for SUPER regional

NCAA Moves Super Regionals to Three-Day Schedule
The Division 1 Competition Oversight Committee announced changes to the Super Regional schedule, set to take effect next season.

The changes will move the best-of-three Supers from the previous setup of a two-day series with the “if necessary” game being played as game two of a doubleheader to the new format of a three-day series with the “if necessary” game being played on the third day.

In the two-day format, the Supers historically have scattered starts, beginning alternately on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, and ending the next day. With this new format, Saturday will be eliminated as a potential “start” day.

The Oversight Committee noted the significance of a possible Game 3 as the do-or-die for a berth in the Women’s College World Series and, as such, noted the belief that it should be played as a stand-alone game on a day all its own.

A statement from Committee Chairwoman Mollie Lehman read, in part, “The new schedule allows teams to get proper rest before playing the most important game of their season. We certainly want our student-athletes to have the opportunity to be at their peak performance level as they attempt to advance to championship play at the Women’s College World Series.”

6-29-2016 Oklahoma Named Top Coaching Staff

NORMAN — The national champion Oklahoma softball coaches have been voted as the 2016 NFCA Division I National Coaching Staff of the Year, the National Fastpitch Association announced Wednesday.

Head coach Patty Gasso, associate head coach Melyssa Lombardi, assistant coach J.T. Gasso, volunteer assistant coach Andrea Gasso and director of operations Jackie Livingston took home the honor after guiding the Sooners to a 57-8 record and the third national championship in program history.

Gasso’s staff, which included Lombardi, was also tabbed the nation’s best in 2000 and 2013 after the Sooners won their first two national titles. OU has been recognized as the Division I Central Region Coaching Staff of the Year for each of the last five seasons.

Oklahoma was at its best when it mattered most, winning its final 22 games of the regular season and its first nine in the postseason for a school record 31-game winning streak. Among those victories were wins over No. 14 national seed Louisiana-Lafayette, No. 6 Alabama, No. 2 Michigan and No. 10 LSU.

Facing No. 4 Auburn in the Championship Series, OU claimed game one with a 3-2 victory as freshman Sydney Romero hit a three-run homer and sophomore Paige Parker held Auburn scoreless for six innings in a complete-game win. The Tigers rallied for an 11-7, extra-inning win in game two to force a decisive game three. The Sooners scored twice in the first inning and Parker gave up one run on five hits for her 38th win of the season in a 2-1 victory as Oklahoma became just the third team ever to win three national titles.

The Sooners started the season ranked No. 9 in the NFCA preseason poll and were as low as No. 14 as late as Week 9. The Sooners kept climbing though and entered the postseason as No. 3 before unanimously being ranked No. 1 in the final poll.

For the fourth time in the last five seasons Oklahoma had at least three All-Americans with Parker on the first team and second-teamers Erin Miller and Shay Knighten. OU tied a school record with eight All-Region honorees for the third straight season.

Winners of the Big 12 for the fifth straight year, Oklahoma swept every major conference award, including Player of the Year (Miller), Pitcher of the Year (Parker), Freshman of the Year (Knighten), Coach of the Year (Gasso) and Defensive Player of the Year (Kelsey Arnold). The Sooners put three players on the All-Big 12 First Team, four on the All-Big 12 Second Team and four on the All-Big 12 Freshman Team.

The team ranked second in the country in both batting average (.351) and fielding percentage (..983) while ranking fourth in winning percentage (.877), seventh in slugging (.538) and 10th in on-base percentage (.427). The batting average was second in both OU and Big 12 history, while the fielding percentage was a school and conference record and the fifth best in NCAA annals.

Parker led the nation in victories, matching the school record set by teammate Kelsey Stevens during the 2014 season. Parker also ranked second nationally in shutouts (14), 10th in strikeouts (269) and 21st in earned run average (1.64).

A 2012 NFCA Hall of Fame inductee, Gasso just completed her 22nd season at the helm of the OU program. She owns a career collegiate coaching record of 1246-372-3 (.770) with an overall mark of 1085-313-2 (.776) at the University of Oklahoma. She ranks seventh among active coaches (min. 5 years) and ninth all-time (min. 10 years) in winning percentage, while her win total is 14th all-time and ninth among active coaches.

Gasso has won more Big 12 games (290-84) than any coach in the league’s history. Oklahoma has claimed nine Big 12 regular season and four championship titles under her direction, including the 2016 crown after a program-best 17-1 mark in league play.