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Godoy Hurls Circle Tap Dukes Past Hill United Chiefs in ISC World Tournament Semis

Thursday, August 16th, 2018

KITCHENER, ON, CANADA – If the Hill United Chiefs are going to repeat as ISC World Tournament champions, they’re going to have to do it the hard way. Through the losers bracket. The Circle Tap Dukes and pitcher Roman Godoy saw to that by stinging the Chiefs, 3-1, in the semifinals at Peter Hallman Ball Yard late Thursday night.

The win moves Circle Tap (4-0) into Friday nights winners bracket final, while Hill United (3-1) must win three games to reach Saturday’s title game.

Godoy hurled a dandy, and has won all four games for the Denmark, Wis. ball club. His outing against the ISC’s No. 1 ranked Chiefs was his best so far as he allowed five hits, walked four and struck out seven. His only blemish was a bases-loaded walk to Mark Johnson that forced in the Chiefs lone run in the fourth inning. But Godoy escaped disaster by getting Shane Boland on a screaming line drive to first baseman Blair Ezekiel, and James Todhunter to ground out to end the inning.

Manuel Godoy quickly pulled the Dukes even in the bottom of the fourth by blasting an Adam Folkard rise ball deep over the right-field fence. Then in the sixth, Godoy (2-for-3) got the best of Folkard again with a lead-off single, followed by Folkard issuing back-to-back walks to load the bases.

Folkard struck out Zane Vanlieshout for the first out, but then walked Leonardo Latasia to force in the go-ahead run. With the bases still full, Guillermo Patat lifted a fly ball deep enough to centerfield to bring home pinch runner, Julian Fernandez, with the third run. Folkard (3-1) allowed just three hits with 13 strikeouts and six walks.

Boland gave Hill United a glimmer of hope when he led off the seventh by beating out a high chopper in front of the plate. But Godoy bore down, striking out Todhunter, getting Ezekiel to hit into a force out at second base, and finishing off the Chiefs by striking out Nicolas Carril to end the game.

Ezekiel’s Feat Powers Chiefs Over Monsters

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018



KITCHENER, ON, CANADA
– Brad Ezekiel wrote himself into the record book with an impressive day at the plate, and as a result, the Hill United Chiefs cruised to their third victory in the ISC World Tournament at Peter Hallman Ball Yard in Kitchener, Tuesday afternoon.

Ezekiel, batting leadoff, went 4-for-4 and drove in seven runs, highlighted by a second-inning grand slam that powered the Chiefs to an 8-1 victory over the Nith River Monsters of New Hamburg, Ontario. Ezekiel’s seven RBI ties him with 10 other players for most runs batted in, in an ISC World Tournament game.

The Chiefs’ bats, ignited by Ezekiel’s homer, plated five runs in the second, added two more in the fourth and one in the sixth to give Adam Folkard more than enough offensive support.

The right-hander won his third game of the tournament and finished with a two-hitter, three walks and 10 strikeouts in five innings of work. Pablo Migliavacca relieved Folkard in the sixth and struck out the side to end the game under the seven-run rule.

The River Monsters (2-1) plated their lone run in the second on Steve Lyons double that sent Greg Hammell racing home from first base. Hammell reached safely on a two-out single.

Only two other Chiefs hit safely in the club’s eight-hit attack. Jeff Ellsworth was 2-for-3, Shane Boland was 1-for-2 and scored twice, and Nicolas Carril went 1-for-3.

With but three games into the tournament, Ezekiel leads all batters with four home runs and 12 RBI, and has six hits in 11 at bats for a .545 average. He is yet to strikeout and has scored six times.

As for Folkard, he has allowed just one run on three hits in 15 innings with 33 strikeouts.

The win moves the four-time ISC World Tournament champions into Thursday’s round at 6 p.m. Opponent yet to be determined.

***The 11 players with seven RBI in a game include Paul Smith (1958), Eric Isenhart (1991), Boomer Brush (1993), Steve Price (1998), Kyle Beane (1998), Dan Skillings (2007), B.J. Gulick (2011), Donny Hale (2012), Frederik Terkelsen (2014), Mark Johnson (2016), and joining this record-setting group is Brad Ezekiel.***

Defending Champs Stay Perfect In International Softball Congress World Tournament

Monday, August 13th, 2018

Adam Folkard struck out 15 Pueblo Bandits to lead the Hill United Chiefs to a 6-0 victory in the 72nd ISC World Tournament, Monday. 2016 ISC World Tournament / Photo By BOB OTTO

KITCHENER, ON, CANADA – Adam Folkard threw a shutout, the offense blasted three home runs, and the Six Nations Hill United Chiefs defeated the Bandits of Pueblo, CO, 6-0, Monday to improve to 2-0 in the 72nd ISC World Tournament.

Folkard went the distance, holding the Bandits to three hits, while notching 15 strikeouts. Only Pablo Figueroa, 2-for-3 and Nick Santos, 1-for-3, could catch up with Folkard’s offerings.

Chiefs’ Nicolas Carril (1-for-4) blasted a two-run home run in the second inning which held up until the sixth when Brad Ezekiel (1-for-4) and Bruno Motroni (2-for-3) each belted two-run homers – Ezekiel’s sailed well over the centerfield fence, while Motroni lifted his over the left-field wall.

The Chiefs opened tournament play on Sunday with a 13-0 win over Puslinch, and Folkard picked up the win in that game as well, firing a no-hitter with eight strikeouts in three innings. The game was called after four innings under the mercy rule.

Hill United is in the hunt for its fifth ISC World Tournament championship in the past six years. The Chiefs claimed three consecutive titles from 2013 to 2015. Then after finishing runner-up in 2016, they took the top spot again in 2017.

With the two wins, Folkard improved to 41 wins in ISC World Tournament competition since he began pitching in the world tournament in 2004, which moves him ahead of Korrey Gareau with 40 and into the 7th spot on the all-time wins list. Michael White (1980-2006) is currently the all-time leader with 70.

With the win, Hill United will play again on Tuesday at 5 p.m. against Nith River Monsters (3-0) who defeated Bear Bottom Lodge, 3-2, on Monday.

  • Follow the results at: ISC Point Streak.
  • To watch the action live go to: ISC / YouTube.
  • The Comeback Nation Slams Its Way To Gold In the Men’s Softball World Championship

    Monday, July 17th, 2017

    JOEL EVANS, seen batting in an earlier game against Australia, smashed a grand slam home run as New Zealand beat Australia, 6-4, in the Gold Medal game of the 2017 Men’s Softball World Championship in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, Sunday, July 16, 2017. ANTHONY AU-YEUNG / PHOTOSPORT

    WHITEHORSE, YUKON, Canada – Call the New Zealand fastpitch team what you will, the comeback nation or the never-say-die fastballers, as both monikers personify their amazing performance in the 2017 WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship.

    Trailing 3-2 in the sixth inning of the Gold Medal game, Joel Evans blasted a grand slam home run to help New Zealand claim the world championship with a 6-4 victory over the Australia Steelers at the Pepsi Softball Centre, Sunday afternoon.

    It was the second meeting of the ball clubs, as New Zealand took a 6-2 win in the opening round of championship playoffs among the top-eight teams.

    BRIMMING WITH GOLD

    For New Zealand, this becomes their seventh world championship. The Black Sox have won Gold in 2013, 2004, 2000, 1996, 1984 and 1976 (shared with USA and Canada after weather halted the tournament).

    “I’m really proud of the way they performed and how hard they worked to get to this stage,” said New Zealand Head Coach Mark Sorenson in a post-game interview. “It’s about never giving up and building pressure. Once we started getting quality at bats, we started to build that pressure.”

    Click to continue reading “The Comeback Nation Slams Its Way To Gold In the Men’s Softball World Championship”

    Australia holds off Canada to move into the Gold Medal game of the Men’s Softball World Championship

    Sunday, July 16th, 2017

    Adam Foulard turned in an effective relief effort to help Australia defeat Canada, 7-3, in the Bronze Medal game of the 2017 Men’s Softball World Championship at the Pepsi Softball Centre in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, Sunday, July 17. Photo By BOB OTTO / 2016 ISC World Tournament

    WHITEHORSE, YK, Canada – It’s been eight long years since Australia last won a world championship. After winning three straight playoff games, they’ll once again be battling for the Gold Medal.

    Thanks to James Todhunter and Nick Shailes who homered and Adam Folkard, who turned in an effective relief job, Australia defeated Canada 7-3 at the Pepsi Softball Centre, Sunday.

    With little time for rest, Australia (8-3) will be back on the ball diamond to take on New Zealand (8-1) in the Gold Medal game, while 2015 defending world champion Canada (8-2) leaves the tournament as the Bronze medalist.

    LONG BALL BOMBERS

    With Australia clinging to a 3-1 lead in the fifth inning, Todhunter squared up on a Sean Cleary rise ball sending it deep over the centerfield fence for a two-run home run, and Shailes homered over the left-field wall to give the Steelers a 7-1 lead, chasing Cleary in favor of Devon McCullough.

    But Canada’s big bats wouldn’t go lightly.

    Click to continue reading “Australia holds off Canada to move into the Gold Medal game of the Men’s Softball World Championship”

    United States defeats Australia for crucial win in softball world championship

    Saturday, July 8th, 2017

    WHITEHORSE, YK, Canada – The defense? Stellar. The pitching? Superb. The offense? Clutch.

    Team USA put together an outstanding game to defeat Australia, 2-1, in the second round of the 2017 Men’s Softball World Championship at the Pepsi Softball Centre in Whitehorse, Saturday.

    And it was without a doubt a team win.

    Let’s start with the pitching.

    Jeremy Manley started and went five innings giving up just two hits – one of them a first-inning home run to Nick Shailes that gave the Aussies the early lead.

    Often, that’s all the run support Aussie hurler Adam Folkard needs. Considered by many fastpitch experts as the best pitcher in all of men’s fastpitch, he can be nearly impossible to hit with his 80-plus mph riser and drop.

    Click to continue reading “United States defeats Australia for crucial win in softball world championship”

    Hill United Chiefs open fastball season in Peter Hallman classic that features six ISC top-ranked teams

    Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

    FIVE-TIME ISC TOP PITCHER – Adam Folkard has won five ISC Most Outstanding Pitcher awards. In 2016, he pitched the Hill United Chiefs of Ontario, Canada to runner-up in the ISC World Tournament and was named an All-World pitcher for a eighth time. His 4-1 record gives him 39 wins all-time in ISC World Tournament play. Photo By BOB OTTO

    SIX NATIONS, ONTARIO, CA – The No. 1 ranked Hill United Chiefs opens its fastball season at the 2017 Peter Hallman Memorial Fastball Tournament in St. Clements, Ontario, June 23-25.

    Topping the International Softball Congress (ISC) early-season poll, the Chiefs return with a star-studded lineup that includes the world’s top pitcher, Australian right-hander Adam Folkard, who has led the team to ISC World Tournament championships in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Along with runner-up in 2016.

    Click to continue reading “Hill United Chiefs open fastball season in Peter Hallman classic that features six ISC top-ranked teams”

    Nicholas Mercer: The violence of throwing a softball

    Tuesday, September 13th, 2016
    FIVE-TIME ISC TOP PITCHER - Adam Folkard has won five ISC Most Outstanding Pitcher awards, and has led Australia to titles in the ISF and WBSC World Championships. In 2016, he pitched the Hill United Chiefs of Ontario, Canada to runner-up in the ISC World Tournament and was named an All-World pitcher for a eighth time.  His 4-1 record gives him 39 wins all-time in ISC World Tournament play. Photo By BOB OTTO

    FIVE-TIME ISC TOP PITCHER – Adam Folkard has won five ISC Most Outstanding Pitcher awards, and has led Australia to titles in the ISF and WBSC World Championships. In 2016, he pitched the Hill United Chiefs of Ontario, Canada to runner-up in the ISC World Tournament and was named an All-World pitcher for a eighth time. His 4-1 record gives him 39 wins all-time in ISC World Tournament play. Photo By BOB OTTO

    The Telegram Sports
    By Nicholas Mercer
    Sept. 12, 2016

    ST. JOHNS, NL – Seeing high-level fastpitch softball play out on a computer screen over a webcast doesn’t do the game justice.

    Nor does it allow the average fan to appreciate just what goes into throwing the softball very hard at the plate.

    When you’re watching the game 20-feet from the pitching rubber, it’s easy to see the webcast sells the act incredibly short.

    A hush falls over the crowd as the pitcher takes his signs from the catcher. They’re counting on seeing something great with every pitch.

    That sense of anticipation only heightens when the pitcher rocks back before leaping towards the plate and uncoiling a ball that travels at ungodly speeds.

    Continue Reading in The Telegram

    In The Spotlight: Australian pitchers Andrew Kirkpatrick and Adam Folkard superb in ISF and ISC

    Sunday, August 28th, 2016
    AUSTRALIA'S AND NEW YORK GREMLINS GREAT LEFTY - Andrew Kirkpatrick has helped Australia win ISF and WBSC world championships, and in the 2016 ISC World Tournament, he pitched the New York Gremlins to third place with a 3-1 record that gives him 39 wins in world tournament competition. Photo by BOB OTTO

    AUSTRALIA’S AND NEW YORK GREMLINS GREAT LEFTY – Andrew Kirkpatrick has helped Australia win ISF and WBSC world championships, and in the 2016 ISC World Tournament, he pitched the New York Gremlins to third place with a 3-1 record that gives him 39 wins in world tournament competition. Photo by BOB OTTO

    YUCAIPA, Calif. – In fastpitch circles, Andrew Kirkpatrick and Adam Folkard are household names, as recognizable as baseball Hall of Fame pitchers Sandy Kolfax and Walter Johnson.

    And surely, once Kirkpatrick and Folkard’s fastpitch careers come to an end and they become eligible, induction into the International Softball Congress Hall of Fame awaits them.

    But before we talk about their ISC careers, let’s take a look at what these two have meant to their native Australia.

    The highest level of men’s fastpitch is the International Softball Federation World Championship, (since surplanted by the World Baseball Softball Confederation). It pits country-against-country battling for world domination.

    And in recent world championships, Australia always contends for a title because of Kirkpatrick and Folkard.

    Since 2004, Australia has won the Bronze twice, fourth once, and in 2009 took the Gold by beating New Zealand, 5-0, led by the superb pitching of Folkard, who was just two walks away from a perfect game. Through much of the ISF competition, both men have been mainstays for their country.

    FIVE-TIME ISC TOP PITCHER - Adam Folkard has won five ISC Most Outstanding Pitcher awards, and has led Australia to titles in the ISF and WBSC World Championships. In 2016, he pitched the Hill United Chiefs of Ontario, Canada to runner-up in the ISC World Tournament and was named an All-World pitcher for a eighth time.  His 4-1 record gives him 39 wins all-time in ISC World Tournament play. Photo By BOB OTTO

    FIVE-TIME ISC TOP PITCHER – Adam Folkard has won five ISC Most Outstanding Pitcher awards, and has led Australia to titles in the ISF and WBSC World Championships. In 2016, he pitched the Hill United Chiefs of Ontario, Canada to runner-up in the ISC World Tournament and was named an All-World pitcher for a eighth time. His 4-1 record gives him 39 wins all-time in ISC World Tournament play. Photo By BOB OTTO

    And in the junior men’s program (age 19-under), Australia won four consecutive ISF World Championships (1997, 2001, 2005, 2008). Folkard and Kirkpatrick played huge rolls in winning the titles in 2001 and 2005.

    So these two great pitchers will forever be linked when Australian’s reminisce about the “greatest ever” to play for their national softball team.

    But Kirkpatrick and Folkard’s footprint extends far beyond Australia. In the United States and Canada – and virtually every corner of the fastpitch world – they are celebrities of immense proportion. Most notably in the International Softball Congress (ISC) World Tournament.

  • Both have created fabulous ISC careers, and are far from finished. Let’s look at their numbers in World Tournament competition.
  • NUMBER OF TIMES SELECTED ALL-WORLD

  • Kirkpatrick, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015
  • Folkard, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
  • If you’re counting, that’s eight times each. Well it gets even closer in what really counts for pitchers at the World Tournament – wins.

    At the conclusion of the 2016 ISC World Tournament, Kirkpatrick had a 3-1 record in leading the New York Gremlins to a third place finish, while Folkard was 4-1 for the runner-up Hill United Chiefs.

    So where do they stand all-time among pitchers with the most World Tournament wins? In a dead heat at 39 each, trailing Korrey Gareau with 40.

    And in reaching number 39, both pitchers leapfrogged Dean Holoien, Frank Cox and Brad Underwood tied at 36. And they pushed past Ty Stofflet (37) and Doug Middleton (38).

    In the 70-year history of the ISC World Tournament, only eight pitchers remain perched above Kirkpatrick and Folkard in most wins all-time. At the 2017 World Tournament, it’s conceivable that they could surpass Gareau, and perhaps tie or even get past Paul Algar and Todd Martin with 42 each.

    However, Folkard does have a leg up over Kirkpatrick in a couple of areas. In most consecutive wins, Folkard has 22 (No. 2 all-time, trailing only Gerald Muizelaar with 23), while Kirkpatrick had a string of 13 wins from 2004-2007.

    And as for the most coveted individual honor for pitchers in the World Tournament, Folkard reigns as co-king with five Most Outstanding Pitcher awards tied with the legendary Leroy Zimmerman for whom the award is named.

    Kirkpatrick has one MOP honor, coming in 2006 when he pitched County Materials of Madison, Wisc. to the title.

    Both pitchers appear in good health. Both pitchers can still hit the catcher’s glove with plenty of pop and movement. Both pitchers are two of the most competitive to ever step in the circle. So it’s conceivable that fastpitch fans will be enjoying Kirkpatrick and Folkard’s ISF, WBSC, and ISC exploits for years to come.

    As for ISC Hall of Fame induction when they become eligible? Shoo-ins.

    ISC WORLD TOURNAMENT / INDIVIDUAL PITCHING / MOST WINS

    70 Michael White (1980-2006)
    60 Peter Meredith (1980-2001)
    56 Darren Zack (1992-2012)
    48 Mike Piechnik (1985-2008)
    48 Gerald Muizelaar (1999-2014)
    42 Todd Martin (1993-2010)
    42 Paul Algar (1985-2012)
    40 Korrey Garreau (1995-2014)
    39 Andrew Kirkpatrick (2004-present)
    39 Adam Folkard (2004-present)
    …42 remaining pitchers with at least 20 wins…

    Ezekiel and Cleary, two world-class performers at the 2016 ISC World Tournament

    Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016
    New York Gremlins Kyle Ezekiel rips into a pitch from Sean Cleary of the Toronto Gators and drives it into left-field for a hit. Ezekiel was 1-for-2 off Cleary , but the right-hander came out on top by leading the Gators to a 3-1 victory in the 2016 ISC World Tournament, Aug. 20 at Green Valley Sports Complex in Moline, IL. The Gators went on to dethrone two-time titlest Hill United Chiefs in the final, 6-3, and Cleary was selected the Most Outstanding Pitcher with a 5-0 record, 35 2/3 innings, 19 hits allowed, with 70 strikeouts and a 0.98 ERA. Photo By BOB OTTO / www.ottoinfocus.com.

    New York Gremlins Kyle Ezekiel rips into a pitch from Sean Cleary of the Toronto Gators and drives it into left-field for a hit. Ezekiel was 1-for-2 off Cleary , but the right-hander came out on top by leading the Gators to a 3-1 victory in the 2016 ISC World Tournament, Aug. 20 at Green Valley Sports Complex in Moline, IL. The Gators went on to dethrone two-time titlest Hill United Chiefs in the final, 6-3, and Cleary was selected the Most Outstanding Pitcher with a 5-0 record, 35 2/3 innings, 19 hits allowed, with 70 strikeouts and a 0.98 ERA. Photo By BOB OTTO / www.ottoinfocus.com.

    MOLINE, IL – One can hit, the other can pitch. In the world of top-caliber men’s fastpitch softball, Kyle Ezekiel of the New York Gremlins and Toronto Gators’ right-hander Sean Cleary are two of the best.

    In 2015, Cleary was a Second-Team, All-World pick for helping the Toronto Gators finished second to Hill United Chiefs in the ISC World Tournament.

    But this year, he uped his production. And what a difference it made for the Gators.

    SEAN CLEARY of the Toronto Gators, was selected a first-team, All-World pitcher for leading the Gators to the 2016 70th ISC World Tournament championship. Cleary's production (5-0 record) earned him top honors as the LEROY ZIMMERMAN MOST OUTSTANDING PITCHER, thus ending the three-year reign of Hill United Chiefs ADAM FOLKARD (2015, 2014, 2013). Cleary outdueled Folkard in the championship in helping the Gators defeat the Chiefs, 6-3, Aug. 20, at Green Valley Sports Complex in Moline, IL. Photo By BOB OTTO / www.ottoinfocus.com

    SEAN CLEARY of the Toronto Gators, was selected a first-team, All-World pitcher for leading the Gators to the 2016 70th ISC World Tournament championship. Cleary’s production (5-0 record) earned him top honors as the LEROY ZIMMERMAN MOST OUTSTANDING PITCHER, thus ending the three-year reign of Hill United Chiefs ADAM FOLKARD (2015, 2014, 2013). Cleary outdueled Folkard in the championship in helping the Gators defeat the Chiefs, 6-3, Aug. 20, at Green Valley Sports Complex in Moline, IL. Photo By BOB OTTO / www.ottoinfocus.com

    In a return match-up, Cleary reversed the order and beat his counterpart, Adam Folkard, in leading the Gators to a 6-3 victory in the 2016 70th ISC World Tournament championship game.

    Will the Gators return and repeat in 2017? Or will the Chiefs avenge their loss and regain top billing? Time will tell.