NAFA Open – Holm Classic

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By all standards, NAFA Open-Holm Classic a success

Saturday, June 22nd, 2013

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FARGO, ND – If Benjie Hedgecock and Kyle Koterba were exuding an air of satisfaction following the 2013 NAFA Open-Holm Classic men’s fastpitch tournament, June 14-16, in Fargo, it’s well deserved.

Hedgecock, executive director of the North American Fastpitch Association, and Koterba, tournament director for the NAFA Open-Holm Classic, collaborated to put on one of the most competitive NAFA Open’s in recent years. And Koterba, now in his second year running the tournament, deserves credit for raising the number of teams to ten this year.

But as with any endeavor, there’s always room for improvement.

“Just to have the live streaming video and send more top level umpires and to take it to 12 or 16 teams,” said Hedgecock, referring to just a few goals he and Koterba are striving for.

    RETURNING TO MICKELSON

The reason for the lack of live video coverage this year was because the tournament had to be moved from flood-ravaged Mickelson Field to Lindenwood Park. Mickelson had the resources to broadcast the games, while Lindenwood didn’t.

But a new dike holding back Fargo’s notorious springtime floodwaters, should bring the tourney back to Mickelson next year. So next year look for the tournament back at its intended home field along with live viewing.

    FARGO FINE FOR FASTPITCH

…Speaking of NAFA World Series locations, Fargo appears ideal for the Open Division because of the city’s close proximity to Canada, which sent three teams to the event this year (Randy’s A’s and Sooke Loggers from British Columbia, and the Diamondbacks of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.)

“I believe that with the number of Canadian teams we drew that we should keep it in Fargo,” Hedgecock said, “and get the other Midwest AA-major/Open teams to come and it will be perfect. So I am leaning towards keeping it in Fargo but I haven’t talked to Kyle yet. Kyle has suggested that we have a three-city rotation with Kimberly (Wisc.) and one other Midwest city, but we haven’t developed that thought yet.”

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Grand slammin’ Loggers take fastpitch trophy in North Dakota

Friday, June 21st, 2013

By Britt Santowski – Sooke News Mirror

SOOKE, BC – Last year, the Sooke Loggers left the NAFA Open-Holm Classic with slumped shoulders after a deflating 9 – 8 loss in the final game against the Circle Tap Dukes. This year, after five undefeated games, the Loggers clinched the sixth for the ultimate victory, emerging as the new Classic title holders.

The championship was played over two days, Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16.

On Saturday, the Loggers played three games, starting against the Kegal Black Knights followed by the West Fargo Knights and later that afternoon against Circle Tap.

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Fargo, NAFA OPEN Wrap Up – Sooke over Angels

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

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By Benjie Hedgecock / June 17, 2013
NAFA Executive Director

The 2013 NAFA Open World Series in Fargo, North Dakota was a huge success this past weekend and we want to thank these people for making it such a great experience for the teams, players and fans. The NAFA Website is at nafafastpitch.com

Tournament Director Kyle Koterba did an extraordinary job with the event and was a great host to the 10 teams, players and their fans that participated. Kyle did a great job moving the tourney to another park after the main park which had flooded earlier this year was unplayable.

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Undefeated, Loggers take the fast-pitch trophy

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

By Britt Santowski – Sooke News Mirror
Published: May 29, 2013 5:00 AM

SOOKE, BC – The Sooke Loggers played in the Kelowna May Days fast pitch softball tournament on May 17 to 19, and walked away as the undefeated champions.

On Friday night, squinting into the 9 p.m. sunset, the Loggers squared up against the Westbank Cardinals and made the sport look easy with a 17 to 7 victory.

“We hit four home runs in the game and the hitting attack was lead by Nick Medwedrich and Kyle Cowick,” summarized Len Banner, the team’s Field Manager.

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Big lumber swinging Loggers advance to NAFA Open championship

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

FARGO, ND – The undefeated (4-0) Sooke Loggers of British Columbia came into Sunday’s NAFA Open semifinal outscoring its opponents by a whopping 32-5 margin.

The big question? Could Randy’s A’s silence the Loggers’ hot bats?

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Sooke Loggers and Randy’s A’s advance to semifinals

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

FARGO, ND – Newton and Gabriel lead Randy’s to victory, while hard-hitting and high-scoring Sooke Loggers continue to roll in the NAFA Open-Holm Classic.

    Randy’s A’s 3
    Kegel Black Knights 2

The Black Knights trailed 2-1 heading into the top of the seventh inning and were two outs away from defeat. But Travis De Jong worked Randy’s pitcher Brian Newton for a walk, and B.J. Boom made him pay dearly by belting a triple that plated De Jong to tie the game.

After a scoreless eighth, the tiebreaker went into effect in the ninth. Kegel threatened in their top of the inning by putting runners on first and third with two out. But Newton struck out Rob Geisbrecht to end the threat.

Now the A’s had their opportunity. It started with tie-breaking runner Cory Giroux placed at second base, and Vegas Antoine at the plate. Jim Hartman, who was pitching a solid game, struck out Antoine.

But he couldn’t get Kevin Gabriel.

The third baseman hit a clean single, driving in Giroux with the game winner. Gabriel, batting in the No. 6 spot, led the A’s with two RBIs, while going 2-for-4. First baseman, Eli Jules also drove in a run and went 2-4, and catcher Chad Ghostkeeper was 3-4 with a run.

Newton turned in a gem in the circle for Randy’s. He allowed two runs, scattered four hits and struck out nine Black Knights to pick up the win and move his team on in the playoffs.

But Kegel’s Jim Hartman was tough too. The right-hander from South Dakota held a very good hitting A’s (3-1) to two earned runs on eight hits with seven strikeouts. Kegel’s exits the tournament with a 1-3 record, but all its games were decided by one run.

    Sooke Loggers 9
    Circle Tap Dukes 2

The Loggers were leading 3-2 into the fourth inning and then broke the game open by scoring six runs, highlighted by Adam Schnarr’s solo home run, Chad Bryden’s bases-loaded double that scored two runs; Blake Hunter’s two-run triple, and Brian Banners run-scoring single.

Loggers’ pitcher, Scott Lieph, made the lead stand up by holding a good hitting Circle Tap to two earned runs on eight hits with nine strikeouts and two walks.

Sooke roughed up Circle Tap starter Rob Schweyer for 12 hits and nine earned runs, including three home runs by Kris Walushka, Kyle Cowick, and Schnarr.

The win advances Pool B, No. 1 seed, Loggers (4-0), into the semifinals of the lower bracket where they will meet Pool A, No. 2 seed, Randy’s A’s (3-1) in a noon game at Lindenwood Park in Fargo. The 2012 NAFA Open defending champion Circle Tap leaves the tournament at 2-3.

Angels knock off D-Backs, and Bullets survive Toros
Minnesota Angels 8 Saskatoon Diamondbacks 2 (no information available)
Winnipeg Bullets 1 Topeka Toros 0 (no information available)

The Angels and Bullets will battle in the upper bracket semifinal for the right to play for the 2013 NAFA Open-Holm Classic crown.

Topeka Toros stay perfect in NAFA Open

Saturday, June 15th, 2013

FARGO, ND – Second baseman, Matt Thornton, batting in the two spot, ignited the Topeka Toros offense by blasting a solo homer in the first inning that fueled the Toros on to an 8-1 victory over Rooters Bar of Fargo, Saturday night.

The win gives the Toros a 3-0 record in Pool A of the NAFA Open-Holm Classic and the No. 1 seed going into Sunday’s single elimination playoff.

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Top of lineup helps Topeka Toros to first-round win at NAFA Open

Saturday, June 15th, 2013

FARGO, ND – The Topeka Toros (1-0) got off to a great start in the NAFA Open-Holm Classic by beating a very good Randy’s A’s (1-1) from British Columbia, 4-1, at Lindenwood Park in Fargo, Saturday.

The Toros and A’s matched hits with six apiece, but when it came to “clutch,” Topeka couldn’t have asked much more from the top of its lineup.

    The main protagonists?

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Potskin and Kunz too much for Rooters

Saturday, June 15th, 2013

FARGO, ND – Randy Potskin served notice that just because he leads off doesn’t mean he can’t drive in runs. And He did just that in a huge way in leading Randy’s A’s from British Columbia to an 11-0 victory over Rooters Bar of Fargo, Saturday.

Potskin went 4-for-4 with five RBIs and three runs scored to lead the A’s 12-hit attack. Randy’s scored three runs in each of the third and fourth innings, and finished the game with a five-run sixth to post a 1-0 record in Pool A of the NAFA Open-Holm Classic Men’s Fastpitch Tournament.

But Potskin had plenty of help with Chad Ghostkeeper going 2-4, Eli Jules 2-4, RBI, and Cory Giroux (1-4) belting a three-run home run in the sixth to put the game in the win column.

With all that run support, Travis Kunz didn’t let his teammates down. He spun a two-hitter and struck out 15, while walking two. The only Rooter solving Kunz’ pitches was lead off batter and right fielder, Justin Rheault, who had both hits.

Woods hurls Bullets to victory in NAFA Open

Friday, June 14th, 2013

FARGO, ND – Brady Woods fired a two-hitter and struck out 15 in leading the Winnipeg Bullets to a 5-1 victory over the West Fargo Knights in Friday night’s opener of the NAFA Open – Holm Classic Men’s Fastpitch Tournament.

The Knights lone run came on third baseman Matt Johnson’s solo home run in the second. But the rest of the way, Woods was tough, allowing only Matt Oxley’s sixth inning triple.

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