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Yusef Davis Gets His Chance

Saturday, June 18th, 2016
Yusef Davis Jr., of Long Beach, Calif., was selected second-team, all-tournament at the 2016 USA Softball Men’s Invitational Fastpitch Tournament in Ashland, Ohio, June 11-12. Courtesy Photo

Yusef Davis Jr., of Long Beach, Calif., was selected second-team, all-tournament at the 2016 USA Softball Men’s Invitational Fastpitch Tournament in Ashland, Ohio, June 11-12. Courtesy Photo

LONG BEACH, Calif. – All Yusef Davis Jr. wanted was a chance. He got it and he made the most of it.

Davis heard about the USA Softball Men’s Invitational Fastpitch Tournament being held June 11-12. It was an opportunity for U.S. players to be evaluated by the USA men’s coaching staff and the USA national team selection committee.

It was an opportunity Davis couldn’t pass up. If he played well and impressed the evaluators, it just might earn him an invite to a USA national team tryout camp.

FOOTING THE BILL

That was all it took for the 21 year old Davis to pay his own airfare to Ashland, Ohio where the tournament was being held.

The experience?

“It was incredible,” said Davis, who grew up playing soccer, football, basketball and baseball in youth and high school. “I was nervous. I knew a lot of talent would be there. I wanted to play against that talent and be seen.”

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A1 Bombers defeat Peligro Gremlins to claim the USA Men’s Invitational Tournament

Sunday, June 12th, 2016

USASoftball

ASHLAND, Ohio – The A1 Bombers defeated the Peligro Gremlins of New York 7-3 in the second game of the double knockout format to take the inaugural USA Men’s Invitational Tournament at Brookside Park in Ashland, Sunday. The Bombers went undefeated heading into the championship, but the Gremlins pulled out a 5-4 win to force the if necessary game.

The Bombers defeated J & B Painting of Calif., 9-2, to open the tournament, followed by a 12-4 blasting of the Gremlins to send them into the losers bracket. The Bombers then knocked off the Calif. A’s, 8-5, to reach the championship game.

Meanwhile, the Gremlins regrouped with 9-1 and 5-4 victories over the Capitals Prospects and Calif. A’s respectively for another crack at the Bombers in the championship.

See tournament bracket for all scores

The tournament featured eight teams with USA players only. ASA / USA Softball’s intent for the tournament was to give players an opportunity to be evaluated by the USA Softball Men’s National Team Selection Committee (MNTSC) and USA Softball Men’s National Team coaching staff in hopes of making it into an elite identified athlete pool.

USA Men’s Invitational Tournament in Ashland, Ohio, June 11-12

Saturday, June 4th, 2016

USASoftball

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball, the National Governing Body of Softball in the U.S., has announced today the creation of the USA Softball Men’s Fast Pitch Invitational Tournament to be held June 11-12 in Ashland, Ohio.

    TEAMS ENTERED
  • California A’s
  • J & B Painting, Calif.
  • Capitals Prospects
  • Globe Fastpitch
  • Peligro Gremlins
  • A-1 Bombers
  • Northeast Naturals
  • Farmersville Auction Haymakers
  • For the first time in its history, ASA/USA Softball will be introducing this opportunity for Men’s Fast Pitch players to participate in this inaugural tournament, where athletes will be evaluated by the USA Softball Men’s National Team Selection Committee (MNTSC) and USA Softball Men’s National Team coaching staff in hopes of making it into an elite identified athlete pool.

    “This tournament is important for a player to be seen and evaluated so they have a chance of making the identified athlete pool,” Tournament Director and Men’s National Team Head Coach Denny Bruckert said. “If a player is selected to be part of the pool, that player has the chance to be invited to January’s Men’s National Team Selection Camp, where the roster for the USA Softball Men’s National Team will be chosen.”

    Click to continue reading “USA Men’s Invitational Tournament in Ashland, Ohio, June 11-12”

    J & B Painting Blasts Way to SCIFL Alliance Championship in Santa Fe Springs

    Monday, March 28th, 2016
    J & B Painting won the SCIFL Alliance tournament, Mar. 19-20, at Little Lake Park in Santa Fe Springs, Calif. Courtesy photo

    J & B Painting won the SCIFL Alliance tournament, Mar. 19-20, at Little Lake Park in Santa Fe Springs, Calif. Courtesy photo

    By JESSE ORTIZ / SCIFL President

    SANTA FE SPRINGS, Calif. – Ten teams competed in a So. Calif. Independant Fastpitch League (SCIFL) Alliance tournament, Mar. 19-20, at Little Lake Park in Santa Fe Springs under ideal playing conditions with the weather a balmy low-70s.

    After Saturday’s pool play and Sunday’s single elimination playoff, J & B Painting emerged the champion by defeating Those Guys 8-3 in the title game. Rob Schweyer picked up the win, with Jesse Martinez taking the loss.

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    Results at the NAFA Open World Series / Seattle Invitational

    Saturday, August 1st, 2015
    Tony Mancha will be inducted into the NAFA Hall of Fame. He is seen here pitching the Steel of Texas to the NAFA World Series championship in 2010. Mancha is also a member of the USA Men's National Team. Photo By BOB OTTO

    Tony Mancha will be inducted into the NAFA Hall of Fame. He is seen here pitching the Steel of Texas to the NAFA World Series championship in 2010. Mancha is also a member of the USA Men’s National Team. Photo By BOB OTTO

    FIFE, Wash. – Tony Mancha led J & B Painting to a 6-0 victory over Meralomas on Saturday in the NAFA Open Division and at 5:30 p.m. he will be inducted into the NAFA Hall of Fame along with Canada umpire Dan Young.

    SATURDAY RESULTS

    Surrey Rebels 8
    Victoria Thunder 0
    Winning Pitcher Travis Suzuki
    Losing Pitcher Rob Gunter

    Oregon Cascades 1
    Ladner Masters 0
    Winning pitcher Aaron Emory
    Losing Pitcher Rob Jonston

    J & B Painting 6
    Meralomas 0
    Winning pitcher Tony Mancha
    Losing Pitcher Eruera Drage

    Cal State Builders 7
    Fleetwood Marlins 3
    Winning pitcher Juan Castro, Save Sisko Sabate
    Losing Pitcher Brandon Peck, relief Harv
    Weins

    Seqwyits 8
    Northwest Naturals 3
    Winning pitcher Ivan Thomas
    Losing Pitcher Mark Seward

    K-Club 16
    Press Box 1
    Wiining Pitcher Dan Kolda
    Losing Pitcher Mike Koentopp

    Thunder 8
    Misfits. 0
    Winning pitcher Ryan Spence
    Losing Pitcher Cleon Tungsvick, Bert Ford Relief

    2014 NAFA World Series magazine sent to the publisher

    Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

    Cover of 2014 NAFA World Series magazine

    Cover of 2014 NAFA World Series magazine


    YUCAIPA, Calif. – I’ve sent my magazine entitled, 2014 NAFA World Series, to the publisher, but waiting for a hard copy to finish the final edit before releasing for purchase.

    The magazine’s 112 pages contain dozens of photos, championship game stories and results (AA-Major, AA, A-Major, A, 23-Under, Wood Bat, and Masters East and West), feature stories, NAFA Hall of Fame stories, and a look at past World Series feats & stats of some of the games biggest stars.

    Impressive teams and talent in Amigos Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

    Thursday, November 6th, 2014
    The Amigos Men's Fastpitch Tournament will feature some of sports' outstanding pitchers and players, battling for the championship in this sixth annual event.

    The Amigos Men’s Fastpitch Tournament will feature some of sports’ outstanding pitchers and players, battling for the championship in this sixth annual event.

    SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA – The 6th Annual Amigos Men’s Fastpitch Tournament, Nov. 15-16, offers a who’s who of top teams, featuring outstanding pitchers and players – some of the best talent in the game today.

      THE PITCHING
  • J&B Painting: Devon McCullough, Tony Mancha, Pat Burnes (Mancha, USA Men’s National Team)
  • East Bay Bashers: Julio Rodriguez, Monty Wells
  • Taft Buzzards: Jon Gwizdala, Zack Lach
  • A1 Construction: Shawn Koster, Ed Gasper
  • CR Portland Brewers: Sebastian Gervasutti, Josh Johnson, Scot Lieph (Johnson, USA Men’s National Team)
  • Little Sumpin: Timmy Parnow, Kat Lawrence, Lou Valencia
  • Stockton Black Sox: Brandon Sharer, Bobby Alvara, Ken Brose
  • Da’hui: Rich Snake Rivera, Eddie Rodriguez
  • Click to continue reading “Impressive teams and talent in Amigos Men’s Fastpitch Tournament”

    Johnson’s blast carries Portland CR Brewers to NAFA World Series AA-Major Championship

    Saturday, August 9th, 2014

    JohnsonJosh.MVP.123web Josh Johnson blasted a solo home run to power the Portland CR Brewers to a 3-2 victory to claim the NAFA World Series AA-Major Championship over J & B Painting, Saturday. Johnson also pitched and picked up the win and was named the AA-Major Most Valuable Player. Photo By BOB OTTO

    QUAD CITIES, IA/IL – Call him a man of heroics, a man who thrives on the big stage, a man who rises to the challenge.

    After his performance in the NAFA World Series AA-Major Division championship game, Josh Johnson certainly lived up to those billings.

    With the game tied 2-2 in the sixth inning, Johnson crushed a solo home run high and deep over the leftfield fence to give the Portland CR Brewers a 3-2 victory over J & B Painting of So. Calif., Saturday afternoon at Green Valley Sports Complex.

    “I got a rise ball and I was looking for that or a change-up,” said Johnson, who was named the Most Valuable Player, and is a USA Softball National Team member. “I didn’t want to do too much or over swing.”

    Johnson’s home run came off J & B pitcher Rob Schweyer, who pitched a four-hitter with three walks and 14 strikeouts.

    And if not for some bad luck, Schweyer may have come out the winner.

    J & B took a 2-0 lead in the bottom half of the first on Schweyer’s single that scored Kevin Castillo, who led off the inning with a double up the middle. Schweyer later scored on Patrick Burns’ infield hit.

    Those two runs appeared to be enough for J & B to pull out the win.

    But then came the bad luck.

    In the fifth inning with two outs and Dan Macier on first base by way of a single, Schweyer struck out lead off batter Matt Christensen on a low drop ball. But the ball bounced in the dirt, forcing the catcher to throw to first for the put out.

    But the ball sailed high over the first baseman’s outstretched glove and bounced down the third base line, finally banging up against a rolled up tarp along the fence.

    The J & B defense appeared to hesitate thinking the ball was trapped in the tarp and out of play. As they hesitated, Macier and Christensen tore around the bases with both of them scoring and tying the game.

    After a brief discussion, the umpires ruled the ball had not gotten stuck or trapped in the tarp, so both runs were good.

    SchweyerRob.13web Rob Schweyer struck out 14 and allowed just one earned run for J & B Painting. Photo By BOB OTTO

    “It’s a game that anything can happen,” said Schweyer, who was named to the All-World team. “It was a questionable call, and we didn’t know how to play it. But it was still one of the best games to be involved in.”

    Johnson also picked up the win, going 6 innings and then turned the game over to Terry Luster in the seventh with a runner on first. Luster got a strikeout, and infield pop up and a fly ball to end the game.

    And then the celebration began.

    For Portland sponsor and manager Roger Jones, the win was a first in the NAFA World Series.

    “Chemistry was a key ingredient,” said Jones, who in the past has had teams win four ASA Class A and B national championships. “We have a great defense and didn’t make any errors.

    “And Josh (Johnson) single handedly won some games for us.”

    Jones was right on that account. In Friday night’s winners bracket final, Johnson blasted a two-out, solo home run in the bottom of the seventh to force a 1-1 tie with J & B.

    Portland went on to win that game 4-1 in 11 innings to remain undefeated.

    For J & B sponsor and manager, Bob Berger, the loss in the championship came down to, “a little bad luck,” he said. “That’s all it takes, but Rob pitched great and kept us in the game.”

    The Portland offense was led by Johnson, 1 for 3, with a home run; Kevin Rasmussen 1 for 4, Dan Macier 1 for 3, run scored; and Todd Hodge 1 for 1.

    For J & B, Castillo was 1 for 3 with a double, Schweyer 2 for 3, and Burns 1 for 3.

    Johnson finished with a five-hitter, allowed two runs, four walks, and struck out seven. Luster came on in the seventh for the save. He gave up a walk with a strikeout and didn’t allow any hits.

    Though they lost, J & B has had a good year, winning five its last 10 tournaments. And Berger is planning bigger things next year.

    “Next year were going to the ISC (World Tournament),” he said, adding that his pitching staff will consist of Pat Burns and Devon McCullough and possibly Schweyer.”