December 21, 2014

With 3-1 loss to Argentina, USA Softball takes fourth at Men’s Pan American Championship

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier


BOX SCORE

PARANA, Argentina – The USA Softball Men’s National Team took fourth place following a 3-1 battle with Argentina at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship on Friday evening the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America and USA Softball announced today. The loss eliminated Team USA from the tournament, where the team finished with a 4-4 record and qualified for the 2015 Pan American Games and XIV International Softball Federation (ISF) Men’s World Championship.

“Tonight was a tough loss for the team, but we also saw the resilience of our guys,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “These guys had their backs against the wall so many times throughout this tournament and proved that they will fight until the last pitch. We saw a lot of great things from the team, and are looking forward to continuing to grow as a team and program.”

Click here for full results from the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

Pitching dominated the first half of the game as Argentina’s Lucas Mata shut the U.S. down in order in their first at-bat. USA’s Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.) started in the circle, and despite giving up a leadoff infield single, retired the next three Argentina batters.

Argentina struck first in the bottom of the second inning as Ladislao Malarczuk sent a solo shot over center field to give his team an early 1-0 lead.

The U.S. would fail to get a base runner until the top of the sixth inning when Pat Sagdal (Richland, Wash.) singled with two outs. With Chris Miljavic (Easton, Mo.) at the plate, Sagdal stole second base and came around to score on an overthrow by Argentina’s shortstop.

Tied at 1-1, the game headed into the final inning where the U.S. faced the heart of the Argentina lineup. Bruno Motroni led off with a line drive to left field to put the leadoff batter on board before Manuel Godoy sent a home run over the right field fence. Mancha proved his resiliency, bouncing back and retiring the next three batters with the strikeout.

Trailing by two in their last at-bat, Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) led off with a single to centerfield , but three-consecutive strikeouts ended the U.S. rally before it could begin.

Mancha threw the complete game for the U.S., surrendering six hits, one walk and nine strikeouts. Offensively, Team USA was limited to two hits in the contest while 15 batters retired via strikeout.

With the loss, the Americans took fourth at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship, while Argentina advanced to play Canada in the semi-finals. The winner of the semi’s will then face Venezuela for the title.

As a team, the U.S. finished the tournament with a .175 batting average and were led by Sagdal, who ended with a .250 (5-for-20) batting average and three RBI. From the circle, Mancha finished the tournament with a 1-3 record, 55 strikeouts and a 1.60 ERA in 35 innings pitched.

Team USA now sets their sights on the 2015 season, where they will compete in two international events. First up will be the ISF Men’s World Championship in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada from June 26 – July 5. The U.S. will then head to Toronto, Ontario, Canada for the 2015 Pan American Games, which are slated for July 10-26. You can follow along with Team USA all year round by visiting www.USASoftball.com.

USA Men secure No. 4 playoff seed with shutout victory over Guatemala at Men’s Pan American Championship

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

BOX SCORE

PARANA, Argentina – The USA Softball Men’s National Team completed round robin action at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship on Thursday evening with a 1-0 shutout win over Guatemala, the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball announced today. With the win, the USA Men locked up a spot in the playoffs and qualified for both the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto, Ontario Canada and the XIV International Softball Federation (ISF) Men’s World Championship in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

“Tony pitched another great game,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “Our bats aren’t exploding but we’re playing really great defense. Today is a new day and we’re going to have a tough rematch with Argentina tonight.”

Click here for coverage throughout the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

Team USA struck early in the game against Guatemala, scoring the sole run of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Frank DeGroat Jr. (Ringwood, N.J.) led off the at-bat with a single to left field and advanced to second base on a sac bunt from Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.). With a runner in scoring position, Derrick Zechman (Watsontown, Pa.) sent a line drive to center field to plate DeGroat Jr. and give USA the 1-0 lead.

“It felt good to finally contribute and help the team,” said Zechman. “I’ve been struggling at the plate the whole tournament, so to help our team secure a playoff game meant a lot. It was a great team win to get us in the playoffs.”

The contest stayed at a 1-0 U.S. lead throughout the remainder of the game, with neither side failing to put runners in scoring position until the bottom of the sixth inning when the U.S. would load the bases. Chase Turner (San Jose, Calif.) got a leadoff single and was followed by a walk to Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa). A walk to Mancha loaded the bases for Team USA with two outs, but a strikeout kept the runners from doing further damage.

Mancha got the win in the circle for Team USA and threw lights out throughout the contest. In his seven innings pitched, Mancha issued 15 strikeouts, giving up just one hit and one walk to Guatemala. Mancha also retired at least two batters per inning via the strikeout.

With the win over Guatemala, USA secured their spot in the playoff rounds at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship and are set for a rematch with Argentina tonight at 7 p.m. CT. In their last meeting earlier this week, USA defeated host country Argentina in a 1-0, shutout win. The win also qualified Team USA for both the 2015 Pan American Games, which will be held July 15-26 , and the ISF Men’s World Championship, which will be held June 26 – July 5, 2015. You can follow all of the USA Men’s National Team action at www.USASoftball.com.

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USA blanks host country Argentina 1-0 at Men’s Pan American Championship

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

BOX SCORE

PARANA, Argentina – In front of packed stadium, the USA Softball Men’s National team earned its third victory at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship over host country Argentina in a 1-0 decision the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball announced today. Scoring in the first inning, the U.S. pitching staff was lights out from the circle, giving up just four hits combined while Josh Johnson (El Paso, Texas) came up with a clutch RBI in the first inning to give Team USA the win. With the win, USA moves to 3-3 at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship.

“I thought the team came back and played their guts out,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “We were in a must win situation and Gerald threw a great game. He shut them down twice throughout the batting order and then Tony closed out the game for us. Josh Johnson came up big with an RBI single in the first that proved to be the game winner. We have to come out just as strong when we face Guatemala.”


Click here for coverage throughout the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

USA’s starting pitcher Gerald Muizelaar (Grand Forks, N.D.) came out strong in the top of the first inning, retiring Argentina in order. The U.S. struck first in the bottom half of the inning as Nate Devine (Sonora, Calif.) walked and advanced to second when Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) was hit by a pitch. With two runners on base and one out, Johnson got a timely hit for the U.S. with a line drive to right field to score Devine from second base and put the USA up 1-0.

Muizelaar came out just as strong in the second inning, retiring two Argentina batters via strikeout and a ground out to first base, bringing Team USA back to the plate. A leadoff walk to John Rozich (Oxford, Pa.) looked to get things going offensively for the U.S., but a pair of ground outs and a strikeout ended the rally.

Things were quiet for both sides until the top of the sixth inning when Argentina would load the bases with two outs. Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.) entered the circle for the U.S., giving up a leadoff single before retiring the next batter with a strikeout. A wild pitch advanced the runner to second base but was held up with a ground ball to Chris Miljavic (Easton, Mo.). Mancha then issued back-to-back walks to load the bases, but got out of the jam with a strikeout.

Leading 1-0 in the top of the seventh inning, the U.S. needed three outs to secure the upset over Argentina. A single to centerfield and a bunt put the two leadoff batters on base for Argentina, but USA’s defense proved strong with two groundouts and a popup to earn them the win.

Muizelaar got the win for the U.S., pitching five complete innings with one hit, two walks and six strikeouts. Mancha pitched the final two frames, issuing three hits, two walks and two strikeouts.

“Our backs were up against the wall tonight,” said Muizelaar. “It was a complete team effort, from top to bottom, and everyone contributed. We’ve been a bit inconsistent this week, but we beat two of the top three teams and had a lead on Canada. It just proves that we can play with anybody.”

Team USA will play their final round robin game today against Guatemala at 4:30 p.m. CT. Team USA awaits their playoff schedule, which will be released following the conclusion of today’s remaining matchups at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship. You can follow all of the USA Men’s National Team action at www.USASoftball.com.

Editor’s note: Our apologies for being a bit slow with some of the Pan Am Qualifier posting, I’m battling a nasty strain of flu…

Canada rallies from down 3-1 in 7th to beat USA, remain undefeated

Click logo for official Softball Canada website

Click logo for official Softball Canada website

With USA leading 3-1 in the T of 7th, Greg Garrity hits 3 run homer to win it for Canada, which remains undefeated. USA rallied in the B7, loading bases, but did not score.

Watch for update later, more details.

STANDINGS
TEAM W L

Canada 5 0
Argentina 3 1
Dominican Republic 3 2
Venezuela 2 2
United States 2 3
Mexico 2 3
Cuba 1 3
Guatemala 0 4

USA (2-2) face unbeaten Canada today (4-0) at Pan Am Qualifier in Parana Arg

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Up next for the Team USA is a matchup against an undefeated Canada today at 2 p.m. CT. Live stats and live streaming are available via USA Softball.com

Dominican Republic defeats USA Men 6-1 at Men’s Pan American Championship

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

BOX SCORE

PARANA, Argentina – The USA Men’s Fastpitch National Team could not overcome a three-run third inning, suffering a 6-1 loss to the Dominican Republic at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball announced today. Team USA struck first with a run in the second inning but was held quiet throughout the remainder of the game as the U.S. moves to 2-2 in round robin action.

“Tonight was certainly a tough and strange loss,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “We had a couple questionable calls and bounces that didn’t go our way and every time we started to get things going something would happen to halt it. The team is going to have to bounce back for the next three games, but I think we will be able to put this game behind us and come out strong for the remaining round robin games.”

Click here for coverage throughout the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

USA jumped on the board first in the contest as Frank DeGroat Jr. (Ringwood, N.J.) singled to left field to start the inning. Entering as a pinch runner, Tyler Dudley (Battle Creek, Mich.) would later come around to score on a sac-fly from Kris Bogach ( Huguenot, N.Y.). The Dominican Republic responded in the bottom half of the inning when USA’s starting pitcher Josh Johnson (El Paso, Texas) gave up a solo home run to tie the game.

That score would remain until the third inning when the Dominican Republic would add three more runs to their lead. A leadoff walk from Johnson followed by an infield single put two runners on base before an error in right field cleared the bases to put the Dominican Republic up 4-1.

An infield single got things started again for the Dominican Republic in the bottom of the fourth inning before the U.S. made a pitching change as Gerald Muizelaar (Grand Forks, N.D.) entered the circle to replace starter Johnson. With one runner on base, a double to center field plated another run for the Dominican Republic, extending their lead to 5-1.

Team USA looked to close the lead in the top of the fifth inning as Bogach walked and advanced to second base on a fielder’s choice by Marcus Tan (Union City, Calif.), who also reached safely. A wild pitch advanced Bogach and Tan one base before Chris Miljavic (Easton, Mo.) loaded the bases after getting hit by a pitch. The U.S. threat, however, was ended with a strikeout.

The score held at 5-1 in favor of the Dominican Republic until the bottom of the sixth inning when an infield single plated another run to extend the lead to 6-1. Trailing by five in their last at-bat, back-to-back walks to Bogach and Tan with one out looked to spark a rally for the U.S. offense, but a strikeout and groundout secured the win for the Dominican Republic.

Johnson suffered the loss for the U.S., going three and one-third innings with five hits, five runs and three strikeouts. Muizelaar pitched the final two and two third innings, issuing two hits, one run and one strikeout.

Up next for the Team USA is a matchup against an undefeated Canada today at 2 p.m. CT. Live stats and live streaming are available via USASoftball.com.

USA Men pick up two wins at Men’s Pan American Championship; move to 2-1 in round robin action

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

Click logo for coverage of the Pan Am Qualifier

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

PARANA, Argentina – The USA Men’s Fastpitch National Team rebounded from their opening day loss at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship, picking up a 2-1 (9 inning) win over Venezuela and a 4-2 victory over Cuba. Announced today by the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball , Team USA’s bats came alive and answered in key situations while the pitching staff continued to stifle opponents as the Red, White and Blue move to 2-1 at the tournament.

“Those were two great team wins, especially after our opening day loss,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “Our pitchers gave everything that they had and Tony came in and shut the door when he was needed. Tony is known as a bulldog, and he showed why coming in after pitching that extra inning game against Mexico.”


Click here for coverage throughout the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

Game One: USA 2, Venezuela 1 (9)

BOX SCORE

The USA Men’s Fastpitch National Team’s defense remained resilient as the Eagles soared to a 2-1 (9 inning) win over Venezuela. Team USA’s defense proved itself throughout the nine inning contest, getting eight batters out via ground balls and five batters out via fly outs.

Starting in the circle, Josh Johnson (El Paso, Texas) pitched seven strong innings, allowing just three hits throughout his seven innings pitched with one run, four walks and six strikeouts.

“Our defense was incredible,” said Johnson. “With only a couple strikeouts, they did most of the work. It was a great first win, but we have some tough opponents to face still so we can’t celebrate long. We have to come with our ‘A’ game again.”

Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.) entered in relief as the game went into extra innings, throwing the final two frames with four strikeouts and one walk. Mancha also came up with a huge hit in the top of the ninth inning, connecting for an RBI single to score Nick Mullins (Toms River, N.J.) to give the U.S. the eventual 2-1 win.

Both teams would put runners on the bases in the first three innings, but key pitching and defensive plays kept either side from doing any damage. In the bottom of the third, Venezuela came close to plating a run as three walks from Johnson loaded the bases, but a huge strikeout ended the threat.

Three up, three down innings kept the game at a stalemate until the eighth inning when the International Tie Breaker Policy came into effect. With Chris Miljavic (Easton, Mo.) on second base to start the inning, Nate Devine (Sonora, Calif.) singled to right field to plate Miljavic and give the U.S. a 1-0 lead. Venezuela would not let the lead last long, however, as they brought around their own runner in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game at one run apiece.

With two outs and Mullins on second base to start the top of the ninth, Mancha sent a line drive to center field to regain the lead for Team USA. That lead would prove to be enough, as key defensive plays from Bobby Rosthenhausler (Tucson, Ariz.) and Derrick Zechman (Watsontown, Pa.) and a game ending strikeout from Mancha gave the U.S. the 2-1 win.

For his efforts, Mancha earned the win, moving to 1-1 at the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship. Ramon Jones suffered the loss for Venezuela.

Game Two: USA 4, Cuba 2

BOX SCORE

Team USA took the lead early and never looked back as the Eagles captured a 4-2 win in Sunday’s matchup against Cuba. The U.S. combined for five hits, while three pitchers saw action in the game. Gerald Muizelaar (Grand Forks, N.D.) got the start in the circle, throwing five full frames. Muizelaar gave up five hits, two runs and three walks while striking out six of Cuba’s batters. Johnson entered in relief in the top of the sixth inning, giving up one walk and one strikeout in his one complete inning. Mancha closed out the game in the top of the seventh, allowing just one hit, one walk and striking out one.

The game was scoreless through the first three innings as both sides allowed few runners to reach base. The U.S. jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the third inning as Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) legged out a triple, scoring Pat Sagdal (Richland, Wash.) and Miljavic.

Muizelaar retired the side in order in the top of the fourth inning, bringing the hot U.S. offense back to the plate. Team USA would pad their lead in the bottom half of the inning as Sagdal singled to left field to score Marcus Tan (Union City, Calif.) and a walk to Miljavic plated Kris Bogach (Hugeunot, N.Y.). Entering the sixth inning, the U.S. held a 4-0 lead.

Cuba would not be kept off the board for much longer, however, as an RBI single from Yessander Rodgriguez closed the lead. The U.S. would get a base runner in the bottom of the fifth as Devine reached on a walk but a ground out and strikeout kept the score at 4-1, USA.

Cuba cut the lead in half in the top of the sixth inning as back-to-back singles and a walk loaded the bases. A fielder’s choice to Mullins at short stop plated another run for Cuba to shorten USA’s lead to 4-2.

The lead would prove to be enough as Mancha closed out the game in the top of the seventh. Striking out his first batter faced and getting the second to line out, a walk and a single put two runners on base for Cuba. USA’s defense shut down the rally as a ground ball to Zechman at third base ended the game with the U.S. taking the 4-2 win.

Muizelaar got the win for the Eagles while Gusbal Plutin took the loss for Cuba.

Up next for the Team USA is a matchup against the Dominican Republic on October 27 at 4:30 p.m. CT. Live stats and live streaming are available via USASoftball.com.

USA 2, Venezuela 1 in 9 innings

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

Click logo for official box score by USA Softball's Greg Nydick

Click logo for official box score by USA Softball’s Greg Nydick

Tony Mancha came up big again today. After striking out 18 yesterday in a touch 2-1 loss to Mexico, he came on in the 8th in relief of Josh Johnson who threw 7 shutout innings, got a strikeout to quell a 2nd and 3rd rally for Venezuela after they tied the game at 1, then delivered the game winning hit, a line drive single to center in the 8th for the win. A 1-2-3 ninth for Mancha sealed the win.

Watch for more details and the official story from USA Softball.

USA will face Cuba on Sunday in their third game. They are 1-1, while Canada is 2-0, and will face Venezuela on Sunday.

Pan-Am Qualifier at Parana Arg. – Canada (1-0) to face Mexico today

Softball Canada logoFrom ISC Canada East

Team Canada follows up yesterday’s exciting 1-0 win at 4 pm today vs Mexico at the #PanAm2014 qualifier. Click the link for the live stream, which was working fine last night.

http://9panamericanosoftbol2014.com/eng/index.php/on-line

Mancha leads USA Men National Team from the circle despite a 2-1, extra inning loss to Mexico

From Codi Warren, USA Softball

Click logo for official box score by USA Softball's Greg Nydick

Click logo for official box score by USA Softball’s Greg Nydick

BOX SCORE

PARANA, Argentina – It was a battle of the pitchers in the USA Softball Men’s National Team opening game of the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship against Mexico as the U.S. came up short in a 2-1 (11 inning) loss the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA softball announced today. Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.) was nearly lights out from the circle, throwing a complete game with 18 strikeouts, three hits and one earned run.

“It was a tough loss to start the tournament,” said Head Coach Denny Bruckert (Gillespie, Ill.). “Their pitcher really moved the ball around and made some key pitches in key situations. Tony pitched great and got us out of a lot if situations with their big hitters up at the plate, but we need to start coming up with the big hits in big situations.”

Click here for coverage throughout the IX Conpasa Men’s Fastpitch Panam Championship

Pitching dominated the first half of the matchup as neither side produced a hit until the top of the fourth inning. The U.S. would get a base runner in their first at-bat as Chris Miljavic (Easton, Mo.) would reach on a hit-by-pitch but would later be called out after leaving the base early.

Mancha came out strong in the circle for the U.S, retiring Mexico in order through the first two innings. A leadoff walk in the bottom of the third put the first Mexico runner on base, but Mancha and the USA defense retired the threat with a sac bunt, strikeout and fly out.

Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) produced the first hit of the game in the top of the fourth with a two-out single to center field, but a ground out to third base brought the U.S. defense back out on the field. Mexico scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the fourth, pushing a run across on an RBI single from Ruben Delgadillo. A leadoff hit-by-pitch and a walk put two runners on for Mexico with one out before Delgadillo connected for a single to center field to plate Cesar Rodriguez. With runners on the corner, Mancha came up big for the U.S., producing a pop-up to third and a strikeout to end the damage with just one run on the board.

The Red, White and Blue responded with their own run in the top of the fifth inning as Nick Mullins (Toms River, N.J.) reached on a walk with two outs. Entering as a pinch runner, Tyler Dudley (Battle Creek, Mich.) advanced to third on a single from Nate Devine (Sonora, Calif.) and came around to score after Pat Sagdal (Richland, Wash.) hit a line drive to left field.

Both teams failed to push any additional runs across the plate through the next two innings, forcing the game into extra innings. With the International Tie Breaker policy in effect, Mullins started the top of the eighth inning on second base and advanced to third on a one-out single from Sagdal. With runners on the corner, back-to-back pop-ups kept Mullins from scoring, bringing the bottom half of Mexico’s lineup to the plate.

Mancha worked his way out of a bases loaded situation in the bottom of the eighth to keep the game going into the ninth inning. Miljavic started at second in the top of the ninth and advanced to third on a groundout from Palazzo. A walk to Derrick Zechman (Watsontown, Pa.) and Chase Turner (San Jose, Calif.) loaded the bases for the U.S. with two outs, but a fly ball to left field kept the U.S. from doing any damage.

Mancha continued to shine in the bottom half of the inning, retiring Mexico in order with three strikeouts. Neither team could produce a run in the tenth inning and the U.S. could not push a run across in the top of the eleventh. In the bottom of the inning, Mexico’s Jesus Medina started at second base and an intentional walk to Delgadillo put two runners on base for Mexico. With no outs, Erick Ochoa connected for a single to left field to plate Medina and give Mexico the 2-1 win.

Mancha took the loss for the U.S., pitching the complete game with 18 strikeouts while allowing just three hits and one earned run.

” I felt good during the game,” said Mancha. “Hopefully I can keep the momentum going throughout the rest of the tournament and our offense can come alive .”

Eduardo Escobedo got the win for Mexico. He allowed one run over 11 innings, striking out 11, walking three and giving up four hits.

Up next for the U.S. is a matchup against Venezuela at 4:30 p.m. CT. Live stats and live streaming are available via USASoftball.com.