New Zealand Men’s National Softball Team

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Remembering great fastpitch times with New Zealand pitcher Jim Wana (Seaman)

Thursday, July 30th, 2015
Jim Wana (Seaman) pitching in the 1995 ISC World Tournament in Sioux City, Iowa, where he was named a Second-Team, All-World pitcher for hurling the Broken Bow Travelers to sixth place. Photo By BOB OTTO

Jim Wana (Seaman) pitching in the 1995 ISC World Tournament in Sioux City, Iowa, where he was named a Second-Team, All-World pitcher for hurling the Broken Bow Travelers to sixth place. Photo By BOB OTTO

Jim Wana shares his memories of pitching in the ISC World Tournament, and the great pitchers, players and teams he competed against from 1987 to 1996.

“Being a pitcher, I loved to watch pitchers ‘bring it.’ Pitchers like Peter Meredith, Brad Underwood, Darren Zack, Paul Magan…” – Jim Wana

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND – Even now, 18 years after his last appearance in the ISC World Tournament, Jim Wana can feel the adrenaline start to simmer when he thinks back on pitching against some of the greatest teams in the most prestigious men’s fastpich tournament in the world.

“The ISC in my mind was the best tournament in the world,” said Wana, who was once known in fastpitch as Jimmy Seaman. “Back in the days when I played there was any number of teams that could have won the championship.”

And Wana can lay claim to a few championships himself.

Click to continue reading “Remembering great fastpitch times with New Zealand pitcher Jim Wana (Seaman)”

Teen making his mark with New Zealand Black Sox

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015
Team New Zealand infielder Cole Evans hits a grounder against the Philippines during the Men's World Softball Championships at Bob Van Imp park on Monday. Photograph by: Liam Richards, The Star Phoenix

Team New Zealand infielder Cole Evans hits a grounder against the Philippines during the Men’s World Softball Championships at Bob Van Imp park on Monday. Photograph by: Liam Richards, The Star Phoenix

BY SCOTT LARSON, THE STAR PHOENIX

SASKATOON, SK, Canada – When New Zealand’s Cole Evans came in to pinch hit against Canada on the weekend at the WBSC Men’s World Softball Championship, it looked to be a tough situation for a 17-year-old rookie.

The score was tied 0-0 in the fifth inning and New Zealand’s Black Sox had men on first and second with two out. Evans put a charge into a ball that had to be reeled in by a Canadian outfielder at the fence to keep the game tied. Canada would go on to win the game 2-1 but Evans showed at such a tender age he belonged at this level.

“I got in there looking for a good pitch to hit,” he said. “I thought, ‘You only get three strikes in an at bat so you take the most of each pitch that comes down. He threw a drop ball and I saw the drop spin, had a swing and came up just a bit short. But a strikeout or a pop out to the outfield is the same result.”

Evans is the second youngest player to don the senior men’s uniform. It just so happens the youngest player ever is Mark Sorenson, who is now New Zealand’s head coach.

“He’s on the team because he has earned his spot,” said Sorenson, who played on the national team as a 16-yearold.

Continue reading in Star Phoenix

New Zealand looks golden against Venezuela

Friday, March 8th, 2013

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New Zealand pitcher Jeremy Manley gave the Black Sox a huge boast with a 15-strikeout effort to hold off a very good Venezuelan ball club in a winner’s matchup in the 13th ISF World Softball Championship.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – Since finishing second to Australia in the 2009 ISF World Championship, the New Zealand Black Sox have been planning, working and striving to bring the title back home.

As host to the World Championship, the Black Sox now have that opportunity.

On Saturday night in a winner’s matchup with Venezuela, the Black Sox punched their ticket into the championship grand finale on Sunday by defeating Venezuela 2-0.

Was finishing runner up in the 2009 event a motivator?

“It was a huge motivator,” said former Black Sox Manager Wayne Small in an interview during the game. “A lot of men here were on that team. They remember that (losing 5-0 to Australia) and have used it to their advantage.”

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