June 2007 Rule Clarifications and Plays
June 30, 2007
Should Umpires Call “Time” to Rotate Back to Their Basic Starting Positions After End of Playing Action?
14th Annual Canada Cup
June 29, 2007USA Women Open Play with 14th Annual Canada CupSurrey, B.C. – With a jammed pack schedule this summer, the USA Softball Women’s National Team kicks off its season on Saturday at the 14th Annual Canada Cup International Women’s Fastpitch Tournament at Softball City in Surrey, B.C. The USA National Team is looking to repeat their 2002 appearance at the Canada Cup which ended with the championship heading back to the United States.The team will open up play with a 3:30 p.m. game against Japan Elite then five more pool play games before the start of the playoffs on Friday, July 6. The U.S. is definitely in the toughest pool at the Canada Cup. The USA, Japan and Canada will face each other prior to the playoffs. These same three teams will be in Oklahoma City, July 12-16, for the KFC World Cup of Softball. Australia, the 2004 Olympic silver medalist, will also be making an appearance at this year’s Canada Cup but was placed in the opposite pool.The Canada Cup should be familiar to the majority of the USA roster as more than half have competed at the event over the course of their national team career. The roster includes: Monica Abbott, Salinas, Calif.; Laura Berg, Santa Fe Springs, Calif.; Crystl Bustos, Canyon Country, Calif.; Andrea Duran, Selma, Calif.; Jennie Finch, La Mirada, Calif.; Tairia Flowers, Tucson, Ariz.; Vicky Galindo, Union City, Calif.; Alicia Hollowell, Suisun, Calif.; Lovie Jung, Fountain Valley, Calif.; Kelly Kretschman, Indian Harbour Beach, Fla.; Lauren Lappin, Anaheim, Calif.; Caitlin Lowe, Tustin, Calif.; Jessica Mendoza, Camarillo, Calif.; Cat Osterman, Houston, Texas; Jennie Ritter, Dexter, Mich.; Jenny Topping, Whittier, Calif. and Natasha Watley, Irvine, Calif.The team is led by Head Coach Mike Candrea, who led the 2002 USA Softball Women’s National Team to the Canada Cup title prior to leading the same squad to the 2002 ISF World Championship title. He is assisted by Chuck D’Arcy, Karen Johns and John Rittman.
2007 USA Canada Cup Schedule
All Times PST
Date Time Game Field
Sat., June 30 3:30 p.m. USA vs. Japan Elite Softball City - 1
Sun., July 1 10:30 a.m. USA vs. Puerto Rico Softball City - 1
Mon., July 2 3:30 p.m. USA vs. Australia Softball City - 1
Tue., July 3 3:30 p.m. USA vs. WA Absolute Blast Softball City - 1
Wed., July 4 1:00 p.m. USA vs. Chinese Taipei Softball City - 1
Thur., July 5 8:30 p.m. USA vs. White Rock Renegades Softball City - 1
Fri., July 6 TBA Medal Rounds
Sat., July 7 TBA Medal Rounds
Sun., July 8 TBA Medal Rounds
USA Junior Women advance
June 29, 2007
USA Junior Women advance to gold medal game with 3-0 win over Japan
ENSCHEDE, Netherlands – A four-hit shutout from Ashley Brignac (River Ridge, La.) and several key hits propelled the United States into the gold medal game with a 3-0 victory over defending world champion Japan Friday evening at the ISF Junior Women’s World Championships.
It marks the first win since 1995 that a USA Junior Women’s team has had over Japan at a Junior Women’s World Championship. Japan had been 4-0 against the Red, White and Blue at the past two Junior World Championship (1999 and 2003).
“I thought we did a nice job coming out and putting runners on base, which gave us opportunities,” said head coach Jay Miller. “We put a runner on base in every inning, which is what you need to do. That’s a good sign heading into the gold medal game.
“We got a great pitching performance by Ashley and Rosey called a great game. We made the plays defensively, we needed to make. The big key was keeping the leadoff runner off base every inning. That really makes it easier for the defense. We had some big hits throughout order, which is another good sign going into the final game.”
The USA struck first, scoring an unearned run in the second inning. Monica Harrison (Garden Grove, Calif.) singled and then Neena Bryant (Placentia, Calif.) reached on an error to put two on with no one out. Tiffany Huff (Saugus, Calif.) reached on a fielder’s choice, but on the play, second baseman Marina Kira flipped the ball past the shortstop covering second base and into the outfield, allowing Harrison to come around and score.
In the fourth inning, the USA struck for two more runs to make it 3-0. Bryant singled to lead off the inning and eventually was driven in by a double from Huff to left-center field. After Rosey Neill (Laguna Hills, Calif.) moved her to third base with a ground out, Brittany Lastrapes (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) drove her in with a single to center field.
Those runs would be more than enough for Brignac, who turned in a dominating performance against one of the top offenses at the tournament. She scattered four hits in seven innings, walking none and striking out 10. The win moves her to 4-0 for the tournament.
“I think this was our best game since we’ve been here,” Brignac said. “Everyone was pumped and now we’re ready for tomorrow. The elements were a little difficult, but I’m used to that. The rain is the worst one to deal with, but you have to do what you have to do. Just about everything was working for me today. I stayed with my best pitch and that’s what they were going after. If we face [Japan] again, I’ll have the same game plan.”
At the plate, the USA pounded out 10 hits, led by three from Alissa Haber (Newark, Calif.). Harrison and Huff each had two hits while Lastrapes, Maggie Viefhaus (Pacific, Mo.) and Bryant each had one.
“It doesn’t matter who we see,” Miller said. “It wouldn’t surprise me to see Japan, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see another team. Any of the three teams left, we have seen. Whoever it is, I think the kids will be ready.”
The Red, White and Blue, now 9-0, advances to the gold medal game Saturday at 2 pm local time, 7 am Central, against the winner of the bronze medal game. The USA has played in each of the previous five gold medal games at this event, held every four years. In four of those five times, the USA faced Japan. The USA beat China in 1987, lost to Japan in 1991, beat Japan in 1995 and fell to Japan in both 1999 and 2003.
World Championship Headquarters
June 28, 2007
World Championship Headquarters
June 28, 2007USA advances with 6-2 win over Venezuela
ENSCEHDE, Netherlands – A bases-clearing double from Tiffany Huff (Saugus, Calif.) in the fourth inning broke open a close game as the United States advanced Thursday in the medal round at the Junior Women’s World Championships with a 6-2 win over Venezuela.
“I think this game helps us get back in the swing of things where you have to make adjustments at the plate and do some things to be successful,” said head coach Jay Miller. “I’m frustrated with leaving 12 runners on base. We had a lot of opportunities to break things open early, but we didn’t. On the other hand, we gave ourselves ample opportunities to win and we did. We got good, solid pitching from Ashley and Megan and got the big hits when we needed them.”
The USA jumped out to an early lead by scoring two runs in the first inning. Maggie Viefhaus (Pacific, Mo.) drove in Alissa Haber (Newark, Calif.) with a single down the left field line and a single by Neena Bryant (Placentia, Calif.) drove in Viefhaus.
Venezuela cut the lead in half in the third inning, scoring an unearned run on a throwing error by Monica Harrison (Garden Grove, Calif.).
The game remained a one-run contest until the USA scored four runs in the fourth inning to put the out of reach. Harrison’s infield single plated Ashley Hansen (Chandler, Ariz.) and then Huff came through with a double to deep left field to drive in Brittany Lastrapes (Laguna Niguel, Calif.), Bryant and Harrison to make it 6-1. Venezuela added another unearned run in the sixth inning to account for the final score.
Ashley Brignac (River Ridge, La.) improved to 3-0 in the tournament with 5.0 innings of solid work. She allowed two unearned runs on two hits while walking one and striking out 10. Megan Elliott (Prince Frederick, Md.) came into the game in the sixth inning and shut the door on the Venezuelans, pitching two innings of shutout ball. She allowed just one hit while striking out four.
At the plate, Huff had two hits and three RBI while both Viefhaus and Bryant had two hits and an RBI. Lastrapes, Hansen and Harrison added a hit apiece.
“Today was a big win to stay out of the loser’s side,” Miller said. “Now, we’re sitting in a pretty good situation. Tomorrow gives us a good opportunity to feel the other team out, and see where we’re at, because the odds are whoever we see tomorrow, we’ll see Saturday. But we want to give ourselves an opportunity to play for the gold and that continues tomorrow.”
The Red, White and Blue, now 8-0, advances to play defending world champion Japan Friday at 5:30 pm local time, 10:30 am Central. The winner will move on to Saturday’s gold medal game while the loser will have to play in the bronze medal game on Saturday morning for the right to play in the gold medal game.
World Championship Headquarters
June 26, 2007
USA jumps all over Russia in 18-0 victory
ENSCHEDE, Netherlands – Despite another lengthy delay due to rain, the United States wasted little time in the dispatching of Russia Tuesday evening at the Junior Women’s World Championships, winning 18-0 in four innings.
The U.S. plated four runs in the first inning and never looked back. The inning was highlighted by an RBI triple from Ashley Hansen (Chandler, Ariz.) and an RBI double from Bianca Mejia (Sylmar, Calif.).
The second inning was even more explosive as the USA scored six more runs to make it 10-0. A Megan Langenfeld (Bakersfield, Calif.) double to the gap and a single up the middle by Mejia drove in two of the runs.
The third inning saw the USA score four more runs, highlighted by an RBI single from Hansen and an RBI double to the gap by Alissa Haber (Newark, Calif.).
Leading 14-0 heading to the fourth, the USA tacked on four more runs. GiOnna DiSalvatore (Palm Harbor, Fla.) had a pinch-hit, RBI single, Bree Ensminger (Mesa, Ariz.) had an RBI double and Rosey Neill (Laguna Hills, Calif.) doubled off the wall to drive in the final run.
At the plate, the USA had 18 hits, with three players – Hansen, Haber and Brittany Lastrapes (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) – each collecting three. Tiffany Huff (Saugus, Calif.) had two hits and a pair of RBI, as did Mejia. DiSalvatore, Langenfeld, Ensminger, Neill and Katie Schroeder (Yorba Linda, Calif.) each had one hit.
Lindsey Sisk (Murrieta, Calif.) got the start in the circle and went the distance, allowing one hit and a walk while striking out six to move to 2-0 in the tournament.
“After a long rain delay, we came out and took care of business,” Hansen said. “We didn’t take them lightly and jumped on them early. We had good pitching and the defense stepped up behind Lindsey. It’s always good to score in every inning and we’ll just use it as another tune up as we continue to prepare for the medal round.”
The Red, White and Blue will conclude pool play Wednesday against Italy, 2-4, at 7 pm local time, noon Central.
USA Men rebound
June 25, 2007
USA Men rebound to advance to championship game
Prague, CZ---The USA Softball Men’s National Team turned things around in the bronze medal game at the ISF Men’s World Cup by defeating Venezuela 5-2 to earn a spot in the championship game against Japan. A solid pitching performance by USA starter Travis Price (Santa Ana, Calif.) coupled with some timely hitting put the U.S. back on track for the title.
After a scoreless first inning, Venezuela took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning when Coronel was hit by a pitch, moved to third on a single by Flores and scored on a groundout by Guererro.
The U.S. responded in the bottom of the second to take a 2-1 lead. Chris DeLarwelle (Appleton, Wis.) led off the inning with a solo home run to tie the game at 1-1. With one out, Nate Devine (Merced, Calif.) got the offense going again with a single to right field. After a strikeout by Blake Miller (Albany, Ga.), Devine moved into scoring position when Gregg Cascaes (Apple Valley, Minn.) was hit by a pitch but it was an error by the Venezuelan defense that proved to be the difference. It looked like the runners would be stranded on a fielder’s choice by Lucas Goring (St. Paul, Minn.) but the second baseman muffed the throw from the shortstop and allowed Devine to score the go ahead run.
Venezuela tied the game in the top of the third with help from Price who hit three batters in the inning. A lead off double by Linares put the tying run on base and three hit batters in the inning allowed him to come around and scored without another ball being put into play.
In the bottom of the fifth inning the U.S. was the beneficiary of a batter being hit by a pitch. Chris Miljavac (St. Joseph, Mo.) led off the inning and was hit by a pitch. The next two U.S. batters were unable to move him into scoring position after being struck out so Miljavac put himself in scoring position by stealing second base. After a walk to Frank DeGroat, Jr. (Ringwood, N.J.), Devine collected his second hit of the game to score Miljavac and give the Red, White and Blue a 3-2 advantage.
The U.S. managed to hold Venezuela scoreless in the top of the sixth inning and tack on two more insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth. With two runners on base, Miljavac laced a triple to left field that drove in the final two runs of the game to secure a 5-2 U.S. victory.
Price picked up the win in the circle after allowing two runs on five hits and being responsible for five batters being hit by a pitch.
With the win the U.S. advances to face Japan in the championship finals to decide the inaugural champion of the ISF Men’s World Cup. The two teams have split their previous two match-ups at the World Cup with the U.S. winning in pool play and Japan winning in the opening game of the playoffs.
USA Men finish second
June 25, 2007
USA Men finish second at ISF World Cup of Softball
Prague, CZ---The USA Softball Men’s National Team finished second at the 2007 ISF Men’s World Cup of Softball on Sunday after falling to Japan, 2-0, in the championship game. The U.S. rebounded from an opening round loss to Japan to defeat Venezuela and earn a rematch in the championship game.
Japan picked up the only run it would need in the bottom of the first inning when the U.S. defense faltered. Suzuki reached to lead off the inning on an error by U.S. third baseman Gregg Cascaes (Apple Valley, Minn.) and moved to second and third on back-to-back sacrifices by Yokohama and Ishimura. Japan continued to execute the fundamentals of the game with a sacrifice fly to left field that scored Suzuki.
The U.S. recorded its only hit of the game in the top of the fourth inning. Adam LaLonde (Cheboygan, Mich.) led off the inning with a single to left field but the U.S. was not able to bring a run across.
An insurance run was added by Japan in the bottom of the sixth inning for a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the seventh the U.S. mounted a comeback that would fall short. Omar Moraga (Agoura Hills, Calif.) reached after being hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and moved to second when Chris DeLarwelle (Appleton, Wis.) reached on a throwing error by the third baseman. But the comeback was halted when Frank DeGroat, Jr. (Ringwood, N.J.) struck out and Nate Devine (Merced, Calif.) grounded into a double-play back to the pitcher to end the game.
The U.S. finished the game with just one hit and left three runners stranded while Japan collected two runs off eight hits and left five runners on base.
The USA will have a chance to redeem itself in less than a month when it faces off with Japan, Venezuela and Argentina in the inaugural KFC American Challenge Series, July 13-15, in Oklahoma City at the ASA Hall of Fame Complex.
The American Challenge Series is being hosted in conjunction with the 2007 KFC World Cup of Softball. Anyone holding a ticket for the KFC World Cup of Softball will be admitted for free to the KFC American Challenge Series.
World Championship Headquarters
June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
Japan run-rules USA Men, 12-2, in opening game of playoffs at Men’s World Cup
PRAGUE, CZ---Japan advanced to the championship game of the ISF World Cup with a resounding 12-2 five inning win over the USA Men’s National Team on Saturday evening before a crowd of more than 1,200 people.
Japan, which had lost earlier to the United States in round robin, rocked two USA pitchers for 12 runs and 11 hits, including five infield singles, to advance to Sunday’s championship round.
The USA, meanwhile, collected only five hits off two Japanese pitchers and will face Venezuela Sunday at 2 p.m. with the winner advancing to face Japan in the championship final. Venezuela (8-1) shutout DeMo EHS (5-4) of the Netherlands, 8-0 in the earlier playoff game to advance.
Japan pounded USA pitchers Travis Price (Santa Ana, Calif.) and Sonny Perkins (St. Michael’s, Ariz.) for 11 hits. Price hurled the first three innings, allowing seven runs and seven hits in the third inning. Perkins entered the game in the fourth inning and allowed five runs on four hits.
The seven run Japan third included a solo homer by shortstop Ryuji Hazeyama. Left fielder Kiensakus Nishio also had a single in the inning and scored a run.
Japan used two pitchers to limit the USA to a run in the third inning on an RBI single by catcher Frank DeGroat (Ringwood, N.J.) and a solo homer to right center by Chris Miljavac (St. Joseph, Mo.) in the fifth inning.
Miljavac, who had a single in the third inning and was the only USA player with at least two hits, hit his first homer of the World Cup off Japan hurler Tatsuya Hamaguchi, who entered the game for starter Kazutaka Murasato in the fifth inning. Murasato hurled the first four innings allowing one run on four hits. Hamaguchi hurled the last inning and surrendered one hit and the second USA run.