Lucas Mata

...now browsing by tag

 
 

No greater friend to men’s fastpitch than Bebe Garcia

Wednesday, August 24th, 2016
BeBe Garcia and his Baytown Hawks, have won the Latin American State Tournament 12 years, signified by the 12 stars on Garcia's hat. Garcia was inducted into the Texas Latin American Hall of Fame in 2001, and the Texas ASA Hall of Fame in 1994 for his outstanding service and contributions to men's fastpitch softball. Photo By BOB OTTO / Aug. 19, 2016

Bebe Garcia and his Baytown Hawks, have won the Latin American State Tournament 12 years, signified by the 12 stars on Garcia’s hat. Garcia was inducted into the Texas Latin American Hall of Fame in 2001, and the Texas Softball Hall of Fame in 1994 for his outstanding service and contributions to men’s fastpitch softball. Photo By BOB OTTO / Aug. 19, 2016

MOLINE, IL. – Cozied up and sitting just inches from the chain link fence that surrounds home plate on field five at the ISC World Tournament sat Bebe Garcia in his lawn chair. His eyes rarely strayed from the ball diamond.

This is an 81-year-old man who has devoted a good share of his life to boys’ and men’s fastpitch. Loves the game? You bet he does.

Garcia is spry, fit, and gregarious as ever. He talks fastpitch with a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face as long as anyone will listen. And his history in the sport is pretty incredible.

It all began as a kid back in the 1940s in Texas. First as a player, then a pitcher. Good? Yes he was.

But his athletic skills pale in comparison to his leadership skills, his people skills, his marketing skills. In the business world, Garcia would be applauded as a “mover and a shaker.”

The man gets things done for fastpitch in Texas. Baytown and Houston in particular.

He has formed teams, run tournaments, recruited players – mostly young and looking for someone to give them a chance. Garcia gave them that chance.

“I started a team of sandlot players, 16, 17, 18 years old,” said Garcia. “I did that for about 25 years. Then went to organized ball, and moved to Open ball.”

Click to continue reading “No greater friend to men’s fastpitch than Bebe Garcia”

Argentina opens with four straight shutouts

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

The defending world champions have picked up right where they left off at the Junior Men’s World Softball Championship.

By Marcel Vander Wier / Whitehorse Daily Star
July 14, 2014

WHITEHORSE, YUKON, CA – The defending world champions have picked up right where they left off at the Junior Men’s World Softball Championship.

Led by flamethrowers Huemul Mata and Roman Godoy, Argentina began their tournament by recording four straight shutouts. Continue Reading

Wrapping up the 2013 California Classic Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

SANTEE, CA – If you’re a men’s fastpitch fan living in southern California, there’s not much in the way of top-flight tournaments to watch. Except the California Classic. It’s the only big-time tourney being offered south of Santa Barbara where Clyde Bennett hosts the Best of The West.

Now concluding its fourth consecutive year, the Classic offers good competition. This year the Sooke Loggers of British Columbia, CA stopped the California A’s from claiming its fourth consecutive title with a 9-6 victory on Sunday.

Some thought California was heavily favored. That the A’s – loaded with international stars – were a superior team. Especially with Argentine and ISC All-World pitcher Lucas Mata toeing the rubber.

Schellenberg.Kevin.CalifA's.430web Shortstop Kevin Schellenberg is one of several international stars who play for the California A’s. He’s been a member of Team Canada that finished fifth in the 2013 ISF World Championships.

Click to continue reading “Wrapping up the 2013 California Classic Men’s Fastpitch Tournament”

Sooke Loggers upend California A’s to claim Classic title

Monday, July 1st, 2013

Lief.Haldane.Sooke.1web
Sooke’s Scott Lieph, left, and Rich Haldane, middle, combined to pitch the Sooke Loggers of Sooke, British Columbia, Canada to the 2013 California Classic championship, denying world-class pitcher, Lucas Mata, right, of the Bakersfield, California A’s the victory. Photo By BOB OTTO

SANTEE, CALIF – The pitching and the hitting have been solid, and at times spectacular. As a result? Tournament championships – four in fact.

The Sooke Loggers from British Columbia, Canada, clinched their latest title in the Fourth Annual California Classic on Sunday by beating the host Bakersfield, California A’s 9-6 in a contest that featured four home runs and a combined 22 hits.

A hitters’ game?

Certainly, but also one that featured some fine pitching. Especially that of Sooke’s Rich Haldane. The tall right-hander from Great Britain came on in the fifth inning in relief of starter Scott Lieph, and pitched masterfully to pick up the save.

HALDANE SUPERB IN RELIEF
In three innings of relief, Haldane scattered two hits, struck out three, and didn’t allow any runs to an A’s team loaded with great hitters, one through nine.

Sooke manager Len Banner’s decision to make the pitching change was masterful in its timing. California’s Matt Palazzo had just belted a home run, cutting the Loggers’ lead to 8-6 in the fifth. And the A’s seemed to be gauging the 23-year-old Lieph’s hard riser and drop. But Banner, knowing his two pitchers’ skills, didn’t hesitate in making the change.

“They are a good combination and pick each other up,” Banner said. “Scott is a hard thrower and Rich hits his spots, moves the ball around, and changes speeds a bit more than Scott does.”

Click to continue reading “Sooke Loggers upend California A’s to claim Classic title”

ISC World Tournament Super Saturday, undefeated Chiefs the team to beat

Saturday, August 18th, 2012

MIDLAND, MI – The ISC World Tournament has reached the juncture that all teams aspire for – Super Saturday – when the tournament has whittled its way down from 46 to the final-four teams in contention for a world tournament title.

And it’s hardly a surprise that the ISC’s four top-rated teams are still in uniform. Here’s how the action breaks down today:

No. 1 New York Gremlins (4-1) take on the No. 3 Jarvis Ontario Travelers (4-1) in a survival game at noon. The winner advances to meet No. 4 Harrisburg PA Power (4-1) at 2 p.m. for the right to take on the undefeated and No. 2 ranked Six Nations Ontario Hill United Chiefs (5-0) in the championship at 7 p.m.

Click to continue reading “ISC World Tournament Super Saturday, undefeated Chiefs the team to beat”

ISC rankings right on

Friday, August 17th, 2012

MIDLAND, MI – It appears that whomever is involved with the ISC ranking of teams is right on this year. As the No. 1 New York Gremlins, No. 2 Six Nations Ontario Hill United Chiefs, No. 3. Jarvis Ontario Travelers and the No. 4 Harrisburg PA Power will comprise the “final four” of the World Tournament.

The only upset could be if the Kegel Black Knights of Fargo (ND) overcome a 2-0 deficit against the Gremlins with the game in progress in the fourth inning.

So kuddos to the rankings masters, you were right on.

    Scores today:

    Toronto Ontario Gators 2, Eugene OR California A’s 0
    Fargo Kegel Black Knights 7, Saskatoon SK Diamondbacks 1
    Jarvis Travelers 8, Toronto Gators 1

Tonight at 8 p.m. PA Power (4-0) battles the Hill United Chiefs (4-0) in the winners bracket final. Should be a great matchup of pitchers with Power’s Lucas Mata (4-0) battling Chiefs’ Adam Folkard (3-0)

Harrisburg PA Pennsylvania Power sports homegrown talent

Friday, August 17th, 2012

MIDLAND, MI – There’s not a manager in U.S. men’s fastpitch that wouldn’t want to fill his roster with home grown talent.

Count Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Power manager Eric Fogel lucky – if you will – for there’s a lot of Pennsylvania guys on his roster. Which for an ISC top-ranked team (Power holds the No. 4 spot) is a rarity in today’s game at the Open level.

Power’s roster of 22 includes some imported talent, like all open teams, but it’s very minimal. Just Thomas Enoka from Wellington, New Zealand; Lucas Mata of Panara, Argentina, and Karl Gollan of Davenport, Iowa, but actually he’s from New Zealand, so I’m including him in the imported variety, too.

Click to continue reading “Harrisburg PA Pennsylvania Power sports homegrown talent”

Mata and Avery power Pennsylvania into the semifinals

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

By BOB OTTO

MIDLAND, MI – The Pennsylvania team from Harrisburg needed an infusion of power and they got it – in the circle and at the plate.

Right-handed Lucas Mata fired a one-hitter and struck out nine Toronto Gators in leading the Pennsylvania Power to a 3-0 victory, Tuesday, in a quarterfinal matchup.

Click to continue reading “Mata and Avery power Pennsylvania into the semifinals”

Lucas Mata pitches Power past Snappers

Sunday, August 12th, 2012

MIDLAND, MI – Lucas Mata allowed three hits, while striking out 15 in leading Pennsylvania Power of Harrisburg, PA to a 6-2 victory over the Niagra Snappers from Niagra Falls, Ontario.

For Power the win was the opening game of the tournament, while the Snappers evened their record at 1-1 after beating Bar on the Avenue 6-0 on Saturday.

Mata a power-pitching right-hander from Argentina had all his pitches working – a sharp breaking rise and drop, along with an effective change-up. (Mata was a 2011 ISC World Tournament, all-world second team pick, in leading the Bakersfield, California A’s to a fifth place finish.)

Click to continue reading “Lucas Mata pitches Power past Snappers”