2015 NAFA World Series

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Missoula Fastpitch Restoring Its Field of Dreams

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016
The Missoula Adult Fastpitch League is determined to renovate Orchard Park (also known as Spurgin Field) for league and tournament play. Courtesy photo

The Missoula Adult Fastpitch League is determined to renovate Orchard Home Park (also known as Spurgin Field) for league and tournament play. Courtesy photo

MISSOULA, MT – The need was there, the will was there, but it would take money – and a lot of it – for men’s fastpitch in Missoula to rebuild its Field of Dreams.

Orchard Home Park, known to local fastpitch enthusiasts as Spurgin Field, sits on the corner of Spurgin Road and Tower Street. It’s been home to men’s fastpitch since the 1970s.

But last August a powerful windstorm blew down a third of the grandstand; the fence surrounding the field, along with the infield and outfield are a mess. In other words, the entire ballpark needs a makeover.

    RAISING THE DOUGH

But that costs money. And a lot of it says Dusty St. John, who along with an army of volunteers resolved to bring the ballpark that hosts the Missoula Adult Fastpitch League (MAFL) back to first-rate playing conditions.

“We needed to raise $15,360 to revive the field and run the league this year,” said St. John, MAFL president and co-manager of Shock-N-Awe, one of five teams comprising the league. “It was a lofty goal to ask of five teams, but much to our delight the teams stepped up and exceeded our goals by raising $16,245.”

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Fargo Memorial Fastpitch Tournament, great competition and price

Saturday, March 26th, 2016

The Kansas City Angels Fernando Esquivel slides safely into home with an inside the park home run. Photo By BOB OTTO
The Fargo Memorial Tournament will offer competitive pitching, hitting and defensive prowess for NAFA A-Major teams and below at Fargo’s Northside Softball Complex May 28-29.

FARGO, ND – When Tournament Director Justin Feist started making plans for the Fargo Memorial Tournament, he decided that the entry fee would be reasonable. Some would most likely say, “wow, what a deal.”

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Someone to know: Jesse Ortiz, president of the So. Calif. Independent Fastpitch League

Thursday, March 24th, 2016

SCIFL2r

BURBANK, Calif. – When he was just a young 21-year-old, Jesse Ortiz’ fastpitch world consisted of just playing the game he loved. Either behind the plate, or in the infield. Those were simple times. Show up for the games, play and go home.

But oh how his fastpitch world has changed.

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Plan now for 2016 NAFA World Series

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015
The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players - from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players – from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

By BENJIE HEDGECOCK / NAFA Executive Director

DAYTON, OR – The NAFA World Series is just seven months away. Start planning to enter your team in one of the nine divisions offered by the organization that serves approximately 150 men’s, junior men’s and masters teams.

    Mark Your Calendar
  • “Open” World Series & West Championships( “A”, “AA”) will be July 22-24 in Seattle (Fife), Washington
  • “A-Major” Aug. 11-14 in Mankato & North Mankato, Minnesota
  • “AA-Major” Aug. 10-12 in Mankato & North Mankato, Minnesota
  • Wood Bat Nationals Upper Midwest Aug. 13-14 in Mankato & North Mankato, Minnesota
  • NAFA.cover Fastpitch softball: hitting, pitching, running and fielding – much like baseball except fastpitch does it underhanded and much faster! Many of NAFA’s top players come from Canada, United States, Mexico, Japan, Europe and South America.

      Mark Your Calendar
  • “A” Aug. 18-21 in Mankato & North Mankato, Minnesota
  • “AA” Aug. 19-21 in Mankato & North Mankato, Minnesota
  • 23-Under Aug. 19-21 in Mankato, Minnesota
  • Masters East Sept. 9-11
  • Masters West Sept. 16-18 in Carson City, Nevada
  • Visit NAFA website for up to date information.

    Benjie Hedgecock
    Nafafastpitch@gmail.com
    503-559-5398 cell
    503-864-4487 home
    503-864-3939 fax

    From the Land of Oz a Wizard of a men’s fastpitch team

    Monday, October 12th, 2015
    The Wizards of Oz from Kansas took runner-up in the 2014 Topeka Fiesta tournament, losing to the Topeka Toros in the championship. Front row, left, Gary Starkel, Chaz Williams, Niran Buckley, Jeff Tarwater, Ray Foster, and Colton Wray. Back row, left, Grady Wray, Colby Miller, Adam Henry, Kyle Starkel, Norm Hancock, Jarrod Lamott, and Tony Buckley.  Photo courtesy of Jeff Tarwater, player / manager

    The Wizards of Oz from Kansas took runner-up in the 2014 Topeka Fiesta tournament, losing to the Topeka Toros in the championship. Front row, left, Gary Starkel, Chaz Williams, Niran Buckley, Jeff Tarwater, Ray Foster, and Colton Wray. Back row, left, Grady Wray, Colby Miller, Adam Henry, Kyle Starkel, Norm Hancock, Jarrod Lamott, and Tony Buckley. Photo courtesy of Jeff Tarwater, player / manager

    SILVER LAKE, Kan. – Should you go searching for Oz, Kansas, good luck in finding it. For it’s a magical, mythical place involving a cast of characters including a young girl named Dorothy, her dog Toto, a scarecrow, a tin man and a cowardly lion, wicked witches and a sham of a wizard.

    Most people are familiar with the Wizard of Oz. And by now are scratching their heads asking, “Okay, I’ve read the book and seen the movie, but what does it have to do with men’s fastpitch softball?”

    Well, one of the longest running teams in Kansas has embraced the classic fairy tale by spinning it into some good-natured fun and parlaying it into one of the most recognizable names in men’s fastpitch: Wizards of Oz.

      HAVING FUN WITH OZ

    Many folks believe that a town called Oz does exist claims Wizards of Oz player / manager Jeff Tarwater. And the charismatic team leader does little to change their perception.

    “My friend Mike Watson (NAFA Vice President) back in 2009 asked me, ‘why don’t you just tell people we are from Oz?’ I thought about it, and decided to have some fun with it,” said Tarwater. “Of course, that town doesn’t really exist, but it does get conversations started no matter where we go.”

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    Great performances in NAFA West Masters World Series

    Monday, September 21st, 2015
    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players - from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players – from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    CARSON CITY, Nev. – Where the great Masters come to showcase their fastpitch skills in the 40-Older to 60-Older divisions. And this year was no exception as some very fine ball players enhanced their already legendary careers. Making the tournament all the more appealing was the great ambience.

    “Great weather, great fields, great hotels (and gambling),” said NAFA Executive Director Benjie Hedgecock after the completion of the NAFA West Masters World Series. “And most of all great people that really embraced our players and wives for this epic event.”

      BENDOCK’S BALL TEAM THE BEST

    In the first ever 60-Over West, Charlie Bendock assembled a team of his Seattle FP players and the Portland NW Old Growth players and called them Northwest Fastpitch and they won the championship over Ohio Battery. Prescott Patriots took 3rd from Arizona/So Cal.

      BATTERY CHARGES TO CHAMPIONSHIP

    In the 55-Over division, Ohio Battery beat a strong Bay Area Merchants team to take the title. Lander Masters and NW Old Growth tied for third.

    In the 50-Over Division Cal Storm rolled through the competition to take the title over Nevada Power. Seattle FP 3rd and Streamline Cable of so Cal took 4th.

    In the 45-Over Division, Calgary Cannons were on fire until Rich Haldane quieted their bats in the final as the Seadogs took the title over the strong hitting Alberta squad. Tulsa Gray Sox and So Cal Quakes tied for third.

      LARGE FIELD IN 40-OVER, PRICE IS RIGHT FOR SEADOGS

    In the 40-Over Division which had 13 teams, four teams went to the Gold Division undefeated, Castro Jokers from Texas, Seadogs from Massachusetts, Portland, Oregon’s A1 CR Brewers and the Cal State Builders. Seadogs topped the tough Jokers in one semifinal and the Brewers took some long awaited revenge on the Builders.

    In the final, it was the Seadogs early, then Portland had apparently won it, but the Seadogs Steve Price (NAFA Hall of Famer) hit a three-run blast in the seventh inning to give the defending champs their title back.

      DAY & WALKER LEAD QUAKES TO TITLE

    In the 40-Over Silver Division, Debbie Day and Kirk Walker combined to lead the So Cal Quakes to the final over a fine Utah FP squad and held off Utah in the bottom of the seventh on a wonderful diving catch by the Quakes shortstop, Jeremy Dean. Utah’s Tommy Gray was named MVP on a record eight home run performance and Kirk Walker the MV-Pitcher for the Quakes. Budmen of So Cal and Pirates of Nevada tied for third in the 40-Over Silver.

  • The Complete All World Teams and Most Valuable Pitchers and MVP’s will be posted on Tuesday.
  • “Thanks to everyone who made this a great experience for the players and fans. See you all next year.” – Benjie Hedgecock.

    It’s Championship Sunday In NAFA West Masters World Series

    Sunday, September 20th, 2015
    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players - from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players – from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    CARSON CITY, Nev. – NAFA West Masters Brackets have been updated with Sunday Pairings at www.Nafafastpitch.com.

      NAFA MASTERS HIGHLIGHTS

    Hoss Ward threw a no hitter. (What team does he pitch for?)

    …The hit of the tourney are the Austin Jokers in the 40-Over…The Gold 40-Older Semis are Austin Jokers vs Defending Champs Seadogs and A1 CR Portland Brewers vs Cal State Builders…
    …In the 45-Over, Calgary is on fire scoring at will but today will face the Ace pitchers and will be tested…In the 50-Over, Cal Storm is riding alot of momentum.

    …In the 55-Over, both Bay Area Merchants and Ohio Battery are playing well and appear to be on a collision course for the final but some tough obstacles stand in their way. And in the inaugural 60-Over, Ohio Battery and NW FP (Seattle & Portland) both look very good.

      NAFA NOTES AND MORE

    …The weather is perfect, everyone is having a great time.
    Kris Russom is going through alot of souvenirs, Raquel Ortiz, Fred Carl and Amy Hardesty are friendly at the gates…Melanie Newbold, Jack, Pat Bucknell, Bob Chapel, and several others are doing very well on scorekeeping.

    …We miss JRW and Dewey Yoke who couldnt travel this year and of course our longtime friend Robert Hernandez…The Hall of Fame Inductions of Mark Summers, Bobby Hill, Lantz Day and Richie Hunt were packed and enjoyed by all.

    “Sunday at the ball yard is gonna be so much fun!” – Benjie Hedgecock, NAFA Executive Director

    NAFA West Masters underway, Kammueller hurls no-hitter, Hall of Fame welcomes new members

    Saturday, September 19th, 2015
    Kevin Kammueller of the Cal State Builders fired a no-hitter during the Builders opening game of the 2015 NAFA West Masters World Series.

    Kevin Kammueller of the Cal State Builders fired a no-hitter during the Builders opening game of the 2015 NAFA West Masters World Series.

    CARSON CITY, Nev. – NAFA West Masters World Series Friday game results posted at www.Nafafastpitch.com.

    HALL OF FAME INDUCTION

    Today at 1:45 p.m. NAFA inducted the following fine individuals into the NAFA Hall of Fame

  • Bobby Hill, Tulsa Gray Sox Coach and Manager
  • Mark Summers, Player Roseville Eagles
  • Richie Hunt, Player Tulsa Gray Sox
  • Lantz Day, Player Tulsa Gray Sox
  • (Ceremonies Saturday at 1:45 p.m.)

    TOURNAMENT HIGH-LIGHTS

    Friday night, Kevin Kammueller threw a no hitter for the Cal State Builders against Barros Roofing with Barros’ pitcher Mark Higgins also hurling a very fine game.

    Debbie Day of the So Cal Quakes had beaten a tough Utah Fastpitch team, but on the potential third out a pop fly to right field, a collision caused the ball to drop and two Utah runners scored for the win.

    …The weather is great. We got the West 60-Over off the ground for the first time. Calgary upset the 45 defending Champs Seadogs.

    Centennial Park has new pavement so you can walk in easily. The parks crew have redone all pitching plates for player safety.

    …The umpiring was very good…Clark Evans TD and Pete Davis UIC were in great form…Bat testing by Jessie Ortiz and player check in by Bob Chapel went very smooth.

    …The coaches by unanimous vote added a Designated Runner (DR).

    …It was a great night at the ball yard. All but one field was on time.

    “This is such a wonderful setting as you can checkout on Mike Hoadley’s facebook page as he walked to the top of the mountain and took a picture of the park before his game. I asked why didn’t you wait til after you played your game, he just answered “because it was there”. He’s quite a character. That’s what I love about the players in our sport, they have so many wonderful personalities.” – Benjie Hedgecock, NAFA Executive Director

    …Ill post some pitching speeds later.

    Rich Haldane also made me mention he hit a home run…..he’s a hockey thug and I didn’t want to get high sticked so I did it.

    Magnificent Masters battling in Carson City for NAFA World Series Championships

    Friday, September 18th, 2015
    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players - from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    The North American Fastpitch Association offers World Series tournaments for all caliber of players – from age 23-Under to Masters, 65-over. Visit www.nafafastpitch.com for information to register your team.

    CARSON CITY, Nev. – The masters teams have arrived, the brackets are set, and fastpitch softball’s top players from across the U.S. and Canada from ages 40 to 60 and older will battle for championships in five divisions: 40, 45, 50, 55, and 60 and older from Sept. 18-20 at Centennial Park in Carson City.

    Check out the brackets and drop by the park to take in some great ball games from veterans who can still showcase their skills: NAFA WEST MASTERS CHAMPIONSHIPS

    Need lodging? Then consider Gold Dust West Hotel and Casino in Carson City for your comfort, dining and gaming pleasure.

    NAFA World Series Masters East results

    Sunday, September 13th, 2015

    MOLINE, Ill. – Brackets updated on on ages 40 to 60-Over East Masters championships.