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Guzman, Hackett, Hicks, McCurry and Muizelaar tabbed Assistant Coaches for 2019 Men’s National Team

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 11, 2019

OKLAHOMA CITY – USA Softball has announced the USA Softball Men’s National (MNT) assistant coaches that will join Head Coach Gregg Leather (Staten Island, N.Y.) during the 2019 season.

Ron Guzman (Salinas, Calif.), Ron Hackett (Richmond, Va.), Greg Hicks (Bakersfield, Calif.), Nick McCurry (Ashland, Ohio) and Gerald Muizelaar (Grand Forks, N.D.) will assist Leather as the team competes at the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Men’s World Championship in Prague, Czech Republic, the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru and select international events on the 2019 calendar.

This will be the first stint on the coaching staff for Hackett and Muizelaar while Guzman, Hicks and McCurry have each previously held roles on the MNT coaching staff.

Guzman, along with Hicks and McCurry, helped lead the 2018 U.S. team that competed at the Intercontinental Cup in Prague, Czech Republic. Despite a 1-4 showing at the event, Team USA proved they are a Top Five contender with a 5-4, walk-off win over Argentina.

“I am extremely honored to be a part of the USA Softball Men’s National Team program this summer,” said Guzman. “I’m looking forward to working with Coach Leather and the entire staff. This is the absolute pinnacle in your career to be able to wear the Red, White and Blue while representing your country.”

Hicks and McCurry have served as Assistant Coaches for the MNT since the 2014 season. In their tenure with Team USA, the duo has coached at two WBSC Men’s World Championships and the 2015 Pan American Games.

“As a player or coach, the highest honor you could ever get is to represent the United States,” said McCurry. “There is no better feeling to have a jersey with ‘USA’ on your chest. I’m very thankful that I am chosen for this prestigious honor. Softball has been in my blood ever since I was a very young man. I want to thank everyone that is involved in USA Softball for selecting me. I will never forget this honor. We are looking forward to working with the athletes to win a Gold Medal.”

Hicks and McCurry were also a part of the 2017 coaching staff that helped Team USA claim the Bronze Medal at the Pan American Championship – the first international medal for the U.S. since 2003.

“Being selected to be part of the coaching staff for the 2019 season is very special,” said Hicks. “Any time you can stand on a ball field with ‘USA’ across your chest – it is an unbelievable feeling and never gets old. I feel unbelievably blessed with the opportunity to represent my country in international competition. It is a unique experience that I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

Hackett joins the USA Softball MNT program for his first stint as Assistant Coach after being around the men’s game for a number of years. A native of Elkland, Pa., a hotbed for men’s fast pitch, Hackett played a number of years at the men’s major level. Beginning in 2015, Hackett transitioned into administrative roles, coaching and sponsoring several teams who finished in the Top 5 at the Men’s Major Fast Pitch National Championship.

“It’s an honor to be selected as part of the Men’s National Team coaching staff,” said Hackett. “To represent your country competing against the best in the world is the pinnacle of our sport. I’m humbled and appreciative for the opportunity USA Softball has given us to represent our country this year.”

Muizelaar is making his first appearance as a coach for the MNT program, though he packs plenty of experience as an alumni of the program. A member of the 2013-2015 MNT rosters, Muizelaar competed in two WBSC Men’s World Championships and the 2015 Pan American Games. Muizelaar compiled a 2-3 record in 36 and one-third innings in the circle for Team USA at the World Championships, fanning 53 batters while he went 1-0 at the Pan American Games with 11 strikeouts in 10 and two-third innings pitched.

Gerald Muizelaar, a veteran on the USA National Men’s Fastpitch Team, has now joined the coaching staff on Team USA. Photo By BOB OTTO / 1999 ISC World Tournament

“I am very excited to continue my involvement with the USA Softball Men’s National Team,” said Muizelaar. “I know that my desire to compete on the field will never go away, but I look forward to the new challenge of coaching this group of talented athletes. With the right preparation, I believe that we can compete with the best in the world and have a legitimate opportunity to achieve our goal of winning Gold this summer.”

For more information on the USA Softball National Team program, please visit USASoftball.com.

About USA Softball
USA Softball is a 501(c)(3) not-for profit organization headquartered in Oklahoma City, Okla., and is designated as the National Governing Body (NGB) of Softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. One of the nation’s largest sports organizations, USA Softball sanctions competition through a network of Local Associations, which includes all 50 states and select metro associations. USA Softball is dedicated to providing people of all ages the opportunity to play the game they love at a variety of levels by offering recreational, league, tournament and competitive play for fast pitch, slow pitch and modified pitch. USA Softball annually conducts thousands of tournaments throughout the country including over 100 National Championships. The USA Softball umpire program is among the nation’s largest and are widely known as the best trained umpires in the game.

As the NGB for the sport of softball, USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting the six USA Softball National Teams that compete in events such as the Olympics, Pan American Games, World Championships and other international and domestic events. For more information on USA Softball, including its founding and history as the Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA), please visit, www.USASoftball.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 208 National Federation and Associate Members in 135 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 governs all international competitions involving official National Teams. The WBSC oversees the Premier12, World Baseball Classic, Baseball World Cups, Softball World Cups and Softball World Championships, as well as baseball and softball events at the Olympic Games.

For more information, visit www.wbsc.org, which is available six languages: English, French, Japanese, Korean, Spanish and Traditional Chinese.
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Japan tops host New Zealand to win men’s softball TAB Challenge Cup

Friday, March 1st, 2019

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – Men’s softball No. 3 nation in the world Japan shocked the host crowd and claimed the TAB Challenge Cup 2019 with a 3-1 victory over No. 1 New Zealand in the final of the tournament.

A two-run home run in the top of the sixth inning off the bat of HIKARU MATSUDA provided the Japanese pitching staff enough difference to secure the title at Rosedale Park in Albany, Feb. 10.

Both national teams had advanced to the final after crushing victories in the semifinal. New Zealand beat New Zealand B, 7-0, and Japan defeated Australia by a score of 10-2.

Australia, Japan and New Zealand are tunning up for the WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship 2019, to be held from 13-23 June, in Prague and Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic. New Zealand is the defending world champions.

REO KOYAMA, key member of the WBSC Junior Men’s Softball World Championship 2016 title for Japan, had a stellar outing in the final and claimed the win, pitching 6.33 innings with 5 hits, 1 run, 3 walks and 6 strikeouts. He kept the powerful Black Sox line up quiet for six innings before leaving the circle in the bottom of the seventh, with the score 3-1.

Continue Reading Japan tops host New Zealand.

Santa Dan Delivers Early Christmas Present For Ball Cap Bob

Sunday, December 9th, 2018

DAN NESSLER sent me eight fastpitch softball and baseball caps, including front row, left to right, a Mankato Bethany Lutheran College Lancers softball cap, a Happy Chef cap, WBSC Jr. Men’s Softball World Championship cap, along with my Farm Tavern cap. The second row includes Dan’s gifts of which the MSU cap is from the 2012 Mavericks baseball team that finished third in the NCAA Div. II baseball national championships. On the top row is another BLC cap sandwiched by my 1995 ISC World Tournament cap, left, and 2017 NAFA World Series cap.

YUCAIPA, Calif. – I’m a sucker for caps. Doesn’t matter if it’s softball, baseball, football – any kind of stylish ball cap will hook me into reaching for my wallet.

In the back window of my car, there’s perched a Chicago Bears’ cap. I’m not a Bears fan, so why’s it there? I just like the way the “C” is prominently displayed on the crown. And if I forget one of my caps when I leave the house, “Da Bears” is my backup.

I’ve also got NASCAR hats, my son’s Tyree Oil cap, my grandson Cam’s Spirit Aerosystems cap, Case, Farmall and John Deere hats, three Marine Corps caps…

And a bunch of softball caps – 33 in all, and of course, only of the fastpitch variety.

Click to continue reading “Santa Dan Delivers Early Christmas Present For Ball Cap Bob”

USA Softball Men’s Fast Pitch Futures Team set to compete at 10th Amigo’s Fast Pitch Tournament

Saturday, November 10th, 2018

Hayward, Calif. — The USA Softball Men’s Fast Pitch Futures Team will head to Hayward, Calif. this weekend for the 10th Amigo’s Fast Pitch Tournament, a USA Softball of Northern California-sanctioned event.

The Futures Team will open the tournament with a 10:45 a.m. PT matchup on Saturday, Nov. 10 against Wololoks, followed by a 12:30 p.m. PT game against Team TJ’s, a 2 p.m. PT game against NW Braves and a 3:45 p.m. PT game against EB Bashers to close out the day. Sunday’s schedule will be determined by seeding following Saturday’s results.

  • Athletes selected to the Amigo’s tournament roster include Anthony Aresco, Mick Baker, Ryan Barnes, Dante Biagini, Tyler Bouley, Ryker Zane Chason, Dalton Gray, Peyton Hall, Brad Kilpatrick, Jeff Lewis, Mike Lewis, Chayton Lloyd, Brent Meshke, Chris Norris, and Tony Wark.
  • Click to continue reading “USA Softball Men’s Fast Pitch Futures Team set to compete at 10th Amigo’s Fast Pitch Tournament”

    Team USA holds off CR Bartels Farms in Vancouver Challenge

    Saturday, July 1st, 2017

    VANCOUVER, BC, Canada – The USA Men’s National Softball Team hasn’t been challenged much during pre-world softball tournament play, but that changed in the second round of the Vancouver Challenge, Saturday afternoon.

    In a tight contest, Team USA broke a 1-1 deadlock in the bottom of the fifth inning by scoring twice to escape upset-minded CR Bartel Farms of Eugene, Oregon, 3-1.

    Pinch runner Gil Saenz scored on an infield error, and Erick Ochoa’s deep sacrifice fly brought home Jon Lynch with the final tally in a game shortened to five innings (apparently under a time limit rule).

    Bryce Kay blasted a solo home run in the third to give Team USA the early lead, but CR Bartels evened the score in the fifth when Jenner Christensen singled, stole second base and eventually scored on a passed ball.

    Rich Haldane was tough on the Americans, spinning a three-hitter with four strikeouts and allowing two earned runs.

    In his first appearance for Team USA, Jeremy Manley picked up the win with 4 1/3 innings work, while allowing three hits, no earned runs, and striking out two. Tony Mancha came on to get the final two outs to pick up the save.

    The win improves Team USA to 2-0 in the tournament and boosts their overall record to 15-0 in preparation for the WBSC Men’s World Softball Championship, July 7-16. But the Americans will be tested later Saturday night in the featured game-of-the-day when they take on powerful Canada.

    Team USA’s three hits came from Kay, Marcus Tan and Chris Heinline. CR Bartels countered with hits from Kevin Rasmussen, Christensen and Tyson Barkman.

    Team USA extends win streak in Vancouver Challenge

    Saturday, July 1st, 2017

    VANCOUVER, BC, CANADA – It wasn’t pretty, but in the scorebook it counts as a win.

    The USA Men’s National Softball Team took advantage of three errors, while collecting six hits, to defeat the Sooke Loggers, 4-0, in the opening game of the Vancouver Challenge.

    Team USA plated a single run in the fourth, and sealed the win with three more in the fifth to down the Loggers, one of Canada’s stronger major teams. Only one of the runs was earned.

    Tony Mancha fired a one-hitter in Team USA’s victory over the Sooke Loggers. Photo By BOB OTTO

    Meanwhile, right-hander Tony Mancha hurled a beauty, holding the Loggers to just one hit, a single by Ben Edgington, along with nine strikeouts and a walk.

    The win keeps Team USA perfect at 14-0 in its pre-world championship tournament schedule in preparation for the XV World Softball Championship in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, July 7-16.

    In the win over the Loggers, Erick Ochoa, led the attack going 2-for-3 with an RBI, while Derrick Zechman, Tyler Dudley, Nick Mullins and Gil Saenz had hits off Loggers’ hard-throwing right-hander, Scott Leiph, who struck out seven, walked two, and allowed an earned run.

    Team USA returns to the ball diamond at 5 p.m. (PT) against CR Bartel Farms and then squares off with the Canadian national team at 7.

    To follow the action, click on this link: Team USA / Vancouver Challenge.

    Follow the USA National men’s fastpitch softball team in the Vancouver Challenge

    Saturday, July 1st, 2017

    VANCOUVER, BC, CANADA – The United States national softball team is competing in the Vancouver Challenge, June 30-July 2.

    The tournament is in preparation for the XV Men’s Softball World Championship in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, July 7-16.

    To follow the team and the results, click on this link: Game Changer.

    2017 WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship offers live web-streaming

    Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

    Sixteen teams will compete in the 2017 WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship at the Pepsi Softball Centre in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, July 7-16. Courtesy Photo

    WHITEHORSE, YT, Canada – Fans around the world will be able to watch the 2017 WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship from their living room, thanks to SportsCanada.TV and Ballpark Broadcasting.

    Click to continue reading “2017 WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship offers live web-streaming”

    Men’s world fastpitch softball championship fast approaching

    Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

    WHITEHORSE, CANADA – The 15th Men’s World Softball Championship begins July 7 and continues through July 16 in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada with 16 teams competing for the title at the Pepsi Softball Centre.

    While 2017 will be the first time Yukon hosts a senior men’s event, Softball Yukon has hosted three previous world softball championships – the Junior Men’s World Softball Championship in 2008 and 2014, as well as the 2012 Women’s World Softball Championship.

  • The USA National Team will be right in the hunt for a medal.
  • To learn about the teams and players that comprise five regions of the world, visit: 2017 WBSC Men’s Rosters
  • USA Softball Men’s National Team finishes Father’s Day Tournament with 8-4 victory over JB Titans

    Monday, June 19th, 2017

    PAT SAGDAL belted a double and later scored to help the USA Men’s National Team defeat the J.B. Bombers, 8-4, to claim the championships of the Houston Father’s Day Tournament, Sunday, June 18. USA Softball Photo.

    JUNE 19, 2017, 2:06 A.M. (ET)
    USA Softball Media Report

    HOUSTON — The 2017 USA Softball Men’s National Team (MNT) won their fifth-straight game of the weekend, 8-4, to complete their impressive outing at the Father’s Day Tournament in Houston, Texas, USA Softball announced today. The U.S. scored eight runs on nine hits with no errors.

    Tyler Dudley (Battle Creek, Mich.) got things going with a lead-off double in the second inning before tagging up and reaching third on a flyout by Chase Turner (San Jose, Calif.). A walk to Nick Mullins (Toms River, N.J.) put two runners on for Team USA and a homerun by Pat Sagdal (Richland, Wash.) made it a 3-0 lead.

    Click to continue reading “USA Softball Men’s National Team finishes Father’s Day Tournament with 8-4 victory over JB Titans”