Eastern Ontario Fastball Blog

A blog dedicated to news about the Greater Ottawa Fastball League and other happenings in the world of fastball / fastpitch softball in eastern Ontario and western Quebec, with occasional stories featuring Mrs Fitzroy Fastball, Fitzroy Fastball Junior and the Caveman. If you have info to send on, send me an email at fastball[at]fitzroyharbour.com. Follow @fitzroyfastball on Twitter.

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Saturday, October 27, 2007

Announcements coming for ISC II tourneys

Should be some announcements soon for tournament locations for the 2008 qualifier and 2008 Eastern Ontario Challenge Cup.

Other news: Word is that the 2009 ISC World Tournament and Tournament of Champions will be in Quad City, Iowa.

Bronze Age for Gee-Gees

from Scott Searle

The University of Ottawa Gee-Gees Women's Softball team cashed in a 6th place seed after the regular season for a Bronze Medal in the Championship tournament. The team seemed to save its best performance for the apex of the season as they strutted to a 4-1 record in the OIWFA Championship tournament held at Stronach Park in London this past weekend.
The team opened its weekend against the 2nd seed in McMaster University. This was an ironic match-up as the two teams split their double-header, trading one run games only the week before. The Gee-Gees got off to a strong start behind a walk to Marea Modutlwa playing in her last weekend as a Gee-Gee, who promptly stole 2nd and 3rd base only to be driven in by an Erin Durant single. A promising inning resulted in only one run as Marauder star, Shannon Galea settled down with a pair of strikeouts. The Gee-Gees struck again in the 6th inning to break open a 3-3 tie with 4 runs manufactured by a series of bunts, slaps, and steals. Emily Ernst took the ball in a pressure packed situation and showed her acumen in only her first year as she scattered 4 hits and only 1 earned run over 5 innings of work. Jillian Taylor finished the game with a bang, collecting the last 6 outs for the Gee-Gees behind 5 straight strikeouts as the game ended 8-3. A very solid start for the Gee-Gees as they upset one of the top teams in the OIWFA.
Their work was not done as they had to play York University and the 2nd seed in the University of Toronto back-to-back on Saturday morning. It would be a tall task for the Gee-Gees as they had split their series with York, and dropped both games at home to the Varsity Blues. The team once again sent Emily Ernst to the circle who was fantastic through 5 innings in front of a stellar Gee-Gees defense, keeping York to only 1 run. Another rookie, Laura Skiperis delivered the crushing blow in the 6th inning with a 2 RBI single. Another close game in the playoffs against a resurgent York Lions squad.
With a 2-0 record the Gee-Gees faced another very difficult opponent, in the 2nd ranked University of Toronto Varsity Blues. The Blues had taken both games from the Gee-Gees in the regular season and knocked the Garnet and Grey out of the playoffs in the 2006 semi-final. The Gee-Gees once again jumped to a strong start with a 1-0 lead and never looked back. Elissa Sivel saved her best performance of the year for a critical game, throwing a magnificent 5 innings allowing 1 one run on 2 hits and keeping the potent Blues offense at bay. She also contributed a pair of triples in her first 2 at-bats in a very clutch performance. Jillian Taylor came in once again to shut the door and allowed one run in the 6th and the Blues loaded the bases in the bottom of the 7th and pushed across one run to shrink the Gee-Gee lead to 6-3, and bringing Karlene Cooper to the plate with a chance to win the game. She ripped a shot to dead-center field, and Vanessa Homiak chased the ball over her shoulder and made a diving catch against the fence bringing everyone in the park to their feet to save the game. A fantastic effort to make one of the best catches anyone has ever seen, with a flair for the dramatic as well. The Gee-Gees finished the round-robin 3-0 and the top seed in Pool B.
On Saturday evening the team attended the first banquet in OIWFA history and Vanessa Homiak and Jillian Taylor were awarded Team MVP awards. Jillian was also recognized for her efforts in the “Run for the Cure” in Ottawa for raising over $2000 to cure Breast Cancer. Emily Ernst received recognition for throwing a no-hitter against Queens and the entire team was congratulated for twin efforts to Support Canadian Troops and “Strike Out Breast Cancer” The Gee-Gees are also very proud to note that they received an impromptu “Best Dressed Award” for their efforts at the Banquet.
On Sunday the Gee-Gees went straight to the Semi-Final match up and waited for Laurier to defeat McMaster to find out their opponent. The Gee-Gees again jumped to an early 1-0 lead before Laurier piled on 4 runs to go ahead 4-1. The Gee-Gees responded in the 5th inning to tie it up, and again Allie Rutherford was the hero with a 2 RBI single to put the team ahead in the top of the 7th. Allie had a fantastic weekend, and always seemed to come up with the big hit for the Gee-Gees. It seemed like fate was with the Gee-Gees but a a few uncharacteristic errors highlighted their only bad inning of the weekend and cost them a win as the Golden Hawks pushed across 3 runs to take a 7-6 victory.
This set up a re-match for the Gee-Gees with the University of Toronto Varsity Blues for the Bronze medal. A see-saw game between two strong teams went back and forth as both teams exchanged runs in the early going. Emily Ernst threw another gem for the Gee-Gees holding the Blues to 4 runs over 6 innings as the team took a 5-4 win for the Bronze Medal. A nice finish to a very impressive weekend for the Gee-Gees with their 5th top 3 finish in a row. They will seek to improve on this next year.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Petawawa Fastball Tournament

As per an announcement on Al's Fastball, there are plans to hold a men's and women's fastball tournament in Petawawa in 2008. The posting indicates prize money of $2500 available.

Dates are June 5, 6, 7. (This has changed from the original posting on Al's Fastball).

Organizer Jeff Cochrane can be reached at chase05_at_sympatico.ca or 613-732-0022.

Orleans Softball seeks coaches

Application Deadline October 31 - All competitive and select applications to coach boys or girls fastpitch softball in 2008 are due in to the "Orleans Softball Ass'n" (OAFA) by this date. There are openings for coaches for boys and girls ages 9-19. Call Pam at 613-824-6366 for more info or visit http://www.oafa.org to fill out a coaching application form. Why not put your interest and your passion for the sport to good use!! The boys and girls would love to have you get involved.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Kars Aces Midget Girls Fastball Tryouts

The Kars Aces Midgets will be hosting Evaluation/Tryouts for their upcoming 2008 Midget Program.

We will be practicing outside as long as possible until the cold weather sets in. If you cannot make this first tryout and do want to attend the Evaluations please contact us.

The High School Gym times and dates have already been booked for the winter months as well. We will be looking at playing and competing at the Tier II Level this summer if the Caliber and the Commitment is there from the Players and Parents.

The Kars AcesMidget Team will appeal to Players looking for a Tier II experience in this area in terms of instruction and attitude. The Ottawa Area has been talking about hosting an Ottawa Area base team for the past 6 years to try the Tier II level, so the girls can experience and compete at that level of ball.

The Kars Aces Association Program is happy to announce we are going to offer that level this year in 2008 as long as the Caliber and Commitment of players and parents are there. We are looking at a 2 year program at this age group.

The age of the player does not matter if you are a last year bantam age player or a last year Midget age player, we are open and looking for the best players that will fit into what the team is looking for in this program.

If you are interested in playing and competing at the Tier II Level, and are committed towards the program please contact one of the following on our Kars Aces team web site at www.karsacesmidget.ca

This goes out to any players in the Ottawa area or driving distance in the Ottawa Valley or #401 area that is interested in playing Tier II Midget ball for next summer.

We will be playing in the Ottawa Senior League (CCFL) which plays on Monday and Wednesday nights which we try to have all Doubleheaders on Monday or Wednesday to save on driving cost.

We will be attending the Main Ontario PWSA Sanctioned Tournaments along with two or three other High profile Showcases Tournaments during the 2008 season.

There is “NO” fee to try out with this team. All players that are interested are invited to contact us and attend. All position are open.

For any additional information and dates and location of the Evaluation/Tryouts, please contact the following and if you are unable to attend but wish to tryout please contact us as well.

Alex Sheridan(613) 837-0705

Gee-Gees are back!

from Scott Searle

The University of Ottawa Gee-Gees softball team jumped back into the swing of things with a very strong weekend against York University and Queens University on the weekend. On Friday night the team faced off against York University for a double header and jumped to an early 4-0 lead in the first inning. Singles from Erin Durant and Marea Modutlwa set the table for a Vanessa Homiak triple to drive in 2 runs. Sam Pantalone and Laura Skiperis both pitched in with a pair of RBI singles to finish the inning. This would be all the support Jillian Taylor would need as she threw a very impressive 2-hit performance allowing her only run in the first inning. The Gee-Gees offense kept rolling en route to 8 runs and a 8-1 victory in Mississauga.

York responded in the first inning of the twin-bill with a pair of runs in the first inning before Gee-Gee starter Elissa Sivel settled down and shut the Lions down for 4 innings. The Gee-Gees bats woke up in the 5th as they exploded for 5 runs chasing the York started. Vanessa Homiak once again struck the crushing blow with a 2 RBI single to drive in a resurgent Sarah Thompson who had led the inning off with a monster triple. York responded with 2 runs of their own to tie the game in the 5th inning in a see-saw match-up. The 6th inning saw more of the same as York led off with 5 runs and the Gee-Gees responded with 2 as the game went into the 7th inning as a 9-6 lead for York. Both teams were hitting the ball and putting on a show for the fans who were looking forward to the 7th inning but the umpires called the game because the lights at RiverGrove Park did not stay on. A very disappointing finish to a great back and forth game.

The team traveled through the night back to Napanee to take on Queens for another double header. The Gee-Gees sent rookie pitcher and Kingston native Emily Ernst to the circle in front of a big home-town crowd for her. Emily did not disappoint throwing a no-hit shutout as the Gee-Gees raced to an 8-0 lead. This is only the second no-hitter in Gee-Gee history, congratulations Emily! Offensive leaders were Vanessa Homiak and Lauren Dufort. Vanessa had a monster weekend with 5 triples, 2 of which came in this game en route to a 4 RBI performance. Lauren pitched in with a pair of RBI’s of her own behind a clutch double.

The second game against Queens started in the rain and Queens took advantage and pushed across two runs in the top of the first and another in the second. Jillian Taylor settled down and allowed only 2 hits the rest of the way as the Gee-Gees won 8-3. The top of the Gee-Gees order continued playing well as they scored 3 runs in the first inning. Sam Pantalone drove in the stake in the 3rd inning with a monster two-run homerun to left field.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Valley Raiders and RA Fastball - "tout finito"

TC says that the Valley Raiders and the Ottawa RA Fastball League are kaput.

Blackburn league story in the Orleans Star

Coverage in the Orleans Star about the BMFL

Monday, October 01, 2007

End of the 2007 season

With the Blackburn League finishing up and the announcement of the GOFL All-Stars, I would think that's about it for fastball in the area (with the exception of the Women's University Softball at Ottawa U and Carleton U. which I will continue to post).

Thanks to all that visited the blog through out the season - 62,969 page views in the last calendar year to be precise. Quite an impressive total! The total since I started tracking in June 2006 is just over 90,000 page views.

Keep visiting during the off-season - I will post news, rumours, and other items as I receive them and/or find them.

Special thanks to all the main contributors, especially Sam Oliver, Tony Riches, Cory Morrison, Tyler Cox, and of course the eloquent Shawn Williams.

If you have anything you would like to share, just send it on to fastball_at_fitzroyharbour.com or my work email address if you have it.

GOFL All-stars announced for 2007

Congratulations to the 2007 Greater Ottawa Fastball League All-Stars as voted on by the eight GOFL team managers. Each team ranked the nominated players and were not able to vote for their own players. Here are the results:

First Team All-Stars
P: Dan Konkle, Team Easton
C: Joe McCleary, Quyon Flyers
1B: John Peck, Team Easton
2B: Joel Langford, Orleans Gators (unanimous selection)
3B: John Craig, Stittsville 56ers
SS: Kyle Gourgon, Carp I4C Victory
OF: Ryan Bond, Stittsville 56ers; Dan Jessiman, Stittsville 56ers; Dave Tubman, Team Easton
DP: Mike Branchaud, Manotick Lomor Printers

Second Team All-Stars
P: Dan Bradley, Stittsville 56ers
C: Randy Peck, Team Easton
1B: John Lindsey, Manotick Lomor Printers
2B: Joran Graham, Quyon Flyers
3B: Shawn Rebertz, West Carleton Electric
SS: Mike Cavanagh, West Carleton Electric
OF: Cory Morrison, Team Easton; Mike Money, Carp I4C Victory; Matt McNish, Carp I4C Victory
DP: Trevor Wood, Carp I4C Victory

Team Easton Team Photo

Congrats to Team Easton, GOFL champions for 2007.

Back row (L to R): Cory Morrison, Chad Milne, Lukas Kamps, Dave Tubman, Kevin Chevrier, Todd Fraser
Front row (L to R): Scott Marion, Dan Konkle, John Peck, Randy Peck, Pat O'Connor
Absent: Kyle Olson

Wally's A's win the Blackburn League

The A's won the Blackburn League final in a wild 9-8 victory over the Knights on Sunday.

The A's took the series 2 games to 1.

The Knights won the regular season title, while Wally's A's finished second in regular season play.

Rough Weekend for the GeeGees

from Scott Searle

Success off the field did not translate to success on the field this weekend for the Gee-Gees.

Ottawa 7 Carleton 0
On Friday night they hosted a Breast Cancer Awareness Night as they took on Carleton University. In front of a nice crowd both teams wore special pink uniforms and passed out Pink ribbons and information on early detection and self-examinations to the many minor female athletes in the crowd. A very positive night for everyone involved as the team raised over $50 for Breast Cancer Research and helped inform many female athletes in the crowd about ways to reduce the risk.

Elissa Sivel took the ball for the Gee-Gees and was spectacular in throwing a 1-hit shutout, with 3 walks keeping the Ravens off the scoresheet. The Gee-Gees offense was back to its old tricks exploding for 7 runs and ending the game in the 6th inning. Sarah Thompson was the offensive leader for the team going 3-3 with 3 RBI's, 2 runs scored, and a walk. Alison Hibbett contributed with a 2 RBI double in the 6th and Allie Rutherford drove in the winning run in the 6th inning.

For the second week in a row the Gee-Gees led a “Bridge to the Future” Clinic for local youth, 15 young athletes from as far away as Kingston, Ontario took part in the clinic and took away tips and advice from the Gee-Gees athletes.

Toronto 8 Ottawa 5
The team took on the Defending Silver Medalists from the University of Toronto. As usual, the Varsity Blues had a very strong squad and kept the Gee-Gees off the score sheet until the 4th inning where they pushed across 3 runs behind a 2 RBI single from Sarah Thompson and a clutch triple from Alison Hibbett. The Blues responded and the game was 4-3 for the Gee-Gees until the top of the 7th inning. A pair of walks,a single and a stolen base loaded the bases for the Blues as the Gee-Gees clung to a 1 run lead with 2 outs before a sinking line drive snuck by a diving Vanessa Homiak in Centerfield to drive in 3 runs. A fantastic effort from Vanessa forced her to leave the game with a sore knee as the Blues piled on with 2 more runs to take an 8-4 lead in the 7th. The Gee-Gees responded in their half as Jill Taylor scampered across the plate behind a single from Marea Modutlwa. The Gee-Gees squandered a very strong outing from Jillian Taylor who took only her 2nd loss of the year.

Toronto 6 Ottawa 2
In the 2nd game Emily Ernst took the ball and kept the Blues off-balance with her wide assortment of drops and changes. The Blues broke open the game in the 4th inning with 4 runs as they raced to a 6-2 victory. Laura Skiperis was an offensive star for the Gee-Gees with a pair of hits, including a double and a run scored. Laura has been a bright point for the Gee-Gees in her first year of play.

Guelph 4 Ottawa 3
On Sunday the Gee-Gees took on the undefeated Guelph Gryphons in the hopes of handing them their first loss in OIWFA play. They got off on the wrong foot as Guelph touched starter Elissa Sivel for a pair of runs in the first two innings. The Gee-Gees responded in their half of the 2nd inning with a pair of runs of their own behind a triple from Erin Mulvhill, a fielders choice from Allie Rutherford an RBI single from Alison Hibbet, and Erin Durant cashed in the 2nd run with a double. Elissa Sivel settled down scattering only 1 hit and a walk over the last 5 innings. In the Tie-Breaker the Gryphons started with a runner on 2nd and the Gee-Gees were successful in getting the lead-off batter out, but the runner advanced to third. A Passed ball and a pair of singles allowed 2 runs to score to give Guelph a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 8th. The Gee-Gees responded with one in their half to lose 4-3.

Guelph 4 Ottawa 3
In the final game of the weekend, the Gee-Gees split their pitching staff and Emily Ernst and Jill Taylor each threw half of the game. They were very strong keeping Guelph to 4 runs. The Gee-Gees did all of their scoring in the 5th inning with a pair of singles from Erin Durant and Erin Mulvihill drove in 3 runs. As the Gee-Gees took a 4-3 loss.

2 disappointing losses that slipped away from the team in the later innings. However the team showed strong ability to recover late in the game and has plenty to work on as they continue to strive for the final tournament in London.