2019 Softball Ontario Hall of Fame Inductees

 

 

Toronto, Ontario. (November 22, 2019) – Softball Ontario is pleased to announce the Home Run Sports (a division of Kahunaverse Sports) Class of 2019 to be recognized at Softball Ontario’s Hall of Fame Awards Banquet on November 23, 2019 in Oakville, ON.  The Banquet will be held in conjunction with Softball Ontario’s Softball Summit and its Member Association Annual General Meetings which will take place from November 22-24, 2019.

Each inductee will receive an engraved gold softball bat in recognition of their contributions to our great sport. This year see 3 new inductees to the Organizer/Builder category and the first ever Athlete inductee. Joining the inductees are family members, friends and members of the softball community to help celebrate this great accomplishment.

Please help Softball Ontario congratulate the following inductees:

Jeff Long
Athlete Category

Jeff has dedicated 34 years to the sport of Softball specifically Slo-Pitch. Throughout his playing career, Jeff made 5 all-star appearances while on his way to amassing 15 Slo-Pitch Canadian Championship medals, including 7 gold medals. During Jeff’s Canadian Championship appearances, he was awarded Top Player Round-Robin (1992,1995), Top Batter (1992, 1995), Medal Round Top Player (1994) and Top Player (1999).

Jeff then turned his love for playing the game into a love for coaching. As a coach, Jeff’s team made 12 Softball Canada Slo-Pitch Canadian Championships, winning 4 medals including 2 gold. He was selected to Coach Team Canada’s Border Battle Team from 2009-2011. During that time frame, Team Canada captured a championship title in 2010.  In 2014-2015, Jeff was promoted to be Team Canada’s Select Head Coach. Jeff’s passion for the game has taken him all over Canada, where he racked up several individual and team accomplishments that make him a surefire Hall of Fame inductee.

Robert (Bob) Weedon
Organizer/Builder Category

Bob has been involved in the sport of Softball in various ways for 40 plus years. Whether it was playing, Umpiring, Coaching or being an Administrator, Bob has had tremendous impact on the sport of Softball both in Fast Pitch and Slo-Pitch.

He has been umpiring Slo-Pitch since 1984 and continues to Umpire today. In his successful career as a Softball Ontario/Softball Canada Umpire, he has been given the opportunity to umpire at prestigious events including the 1997 Ontario Special Olympics Summer Games and 1999 World Special Olympics Summer Games. That wasn’t the only time he was on a diamond as Bob coached Senior Men’s 50+ Slo-Pitch from 1989-1993 and then went onto to Coach a Women’s Slo-Pitch Team from 1996-2000.

Currently, Bob is the Zone Director at Slo-Pitch Ontario and has served as the Slo-Pitch Ontario Secretary-Treasurer.  Not to be overshadowed, is his long tenure as the President of Maple City Slo-Pitch for the past 42 years. Bob was previously the President of SPO, a member of Softball Ontario’s Board of Directors and a voting delegate for Softball Canada.

In relation to Bob’s 2019 Softball Ontario Hall of Fame induction, he was inducted into the 1999 SPO Hall of Fame as a Builder for his dedication to developing, promoting, and regulating the sport of Slo-Pitch. In 2006, Bob was the recipient of the Government of Ontario Syl Apps Volunteer Achievement Award for his contributions to the development of sport in Ontario. Softball Ontario is much better off for working with Bob and it is only right that we induct him based on the merits above.

Lynda Turton
Organizer/Builder Category

Lynda’s strong leadership role throughout her involvement in the Softball community has led her to be a key aspect in Softball’s development across Canada. She has been heavily involved in the Canadian Championships in various forms for many years, across multiple levels. Previously, Lynda was the President of PWSA as well as Softball Ontario’s Chair for 4 years. Currently, she is a member Softball Canada’s Board of Directors, while she is the chair of multiple ad-hoc committees.

In 2017, Lynda was the Representative/Supervisor for Canada Summer Games and remains under that title for the upcoming Games in 2021. Due to Lynda’s success over the years, she has been the recipient of several awards including: Volunteer Service Award from Softball Ontario after 5 years; PWSA Service Award and PWSA Executive Service Awards; PWSA Life Member; PWSA Volunteer of the Year; and the Government of Ontario’s Syl Apps Special Achievement Award. We are excited to add Softball Ontario Hall of Fame inductee to this list as a small gesture of our appreciation for all of her continued efforts.

Al Harrison
Organizer/Builder Category

Al’s involvement over the last 30 years in the community of Softball has been incredibly impactful. Al has been involved in many facets in order to helping develop the sport. He was previously the Chair of Softball Ontario as well as a member of Softball Ontario’s and Softball Canada’s Board of Directors, while also was once a member of the International Softball Congress Board of Directors. Allan is currently an Executive Member at Ontario Amateur Softball Association (OASA) and previously held positions as the Advisory Council Chairman as well as the Rule Book Chairman.

Al has had great success within Canadian Championships as he was the Canadian Softball Championship Supervisor for Softball Canada from 1993-2016. Furthermore, he was the manager for Team Ontario at the Canada Summer Games in 1993 before going on to win gold in the same role at the 1997 and 2001 games. Al was also the recipient of the 2002 Coaching Award from the Western Ontario Athletic Association, as well as 2004 Volunteer Citizen of the Year, and inducted as an OASA Life Member Award in 2005. A true builder of the game we are excited to celebrate all of the work Al has done and continues to do.

 

National Volunteer Week – LTPD Committee’s

It’s one of the most important weeks of the year for Softball Ontario, National Volunteer Week! This week (and every week!) we celebrate our incredible, selfless and dedicated volunteers who are the backbone of our programs!

Today we’d like to thank our great LTPD Committee’s – Technical and Competition Review!

Softball Ontario LTPD Technical Committee’s mandate is to review all softball player development clinics to ensure that Softball has a training program for each stage/level; that each training program is age-appropriate, that the training path is clear and is available to all softball members. The Committee is charged with reviewing and evaluating all LTPD materials, including not limited to: Softball Canada’s LTPD Guide, Softball Canada’s Coaches Guides and Softball Canada’s Skills Matrix. This seven (7) person volunteer Committee is committed to sharing best practices on LTPD alignment with the Softball community. Softball Ontario appreciates their time and efforts that they give to our great sport.

Softball Ontario’s Competition Review Committee’s mandate is to review all stages of development and levels of competition to ensure that rules/level of play is age-appropriate, that there is a clear competition pathway for all softball members to play. The Committee is charged with review and evaluating all LTPD materials including and not limited to: Softball Canada’s LTPD Guide, Playball document, and the Softball Canada Rule book-Minor Rules. This seven (7) person volunteer Committee is devoted to reviewing competition structure to ensure LTPD alignment and piloting rules/competition format to ensure that they are suitable for each stage of development. Softball Ontario believes that this volunteer Committee plays an important role in the future of our sport and wants to thank them for being innovating in their thinking, trying new ideas and concepts to make our sport better.

Thank you again to our outstanding LTPD Committee’s – Technical and Competition Review!

Olympic Standout Jen Yee Joins SO 2018 Webinar Series

Softball Ontario’s 2018 Webinar Series continues on Monday, April 6, 2018, as Canadian Olympic standout Jen Yee joins the series to discuss “The Science of Swing: Physics Behind Softball”.

A long-time member of Softball Canada’s Women’s National Team program, Jen Yee is one of the most feared hitters in the world. She competed in the Futures division of the Canada Cup in 2004 and 2005, winning the home run derby at each of those events. After joining the Senior Women’s National Team in 2007, Yee led Canada with a .348 batting average, one homerun and five RBIs in eight games at the 2008 Olympic Games. She has won a pair of silver medals from the 2007 & 2011 Pan Am Games and captured Gold at the 2015Pam Am Games in Toronto, ON. Yee was a key member of the world championship teams in 2010 (bronze), 2012 and 2014. She spent part of the 2013 season playing professionally in Japan. Yee began her collegiate career at Niagara University where she earned the MAAC Rookie of the Year Award. She transferred to Georgia Tech in 2007. In her senior year, she reached base safely in all 62 games she played and led all NCAA hitters in batting average (.538), slugging percentage (1.270), on-base percentage (.732), runs scored (93) and walks (88). She also tied for first with 29homeruns. With those outstanding numbers, she was a top 3 finalist for the 2010 NCAA Player of the Year Award and was named the 2010 ACC Player of the Year.

Softball Ontario announces HLS Provincial Championships

Softball Ontario is pleased to announce that the Female House League Select Provincial Championships will return in 2018 being hosted by Rosedale Community Council-Youth Softball in Hamilton, Ontario. In addition to the Female House League Select Provincial Championships, Softball Ontario is proud to announce that for the first time Softball Ontario will host the Male House League Select Provincial Championships. Rosedale Community Council-Youth Softball will be the host association for the Male Championships.

The Female House League Select Provincial Championships will feature divisions in U12, U14, U16 and U19 and will be held on the weekend of August 11-12, 2018.

The Male House League Select Provincial Championships will feature division in U12, U14, U16 and U19 and will be held on the weekend of August 25-26, 2018.

When asked about hosting Softball Ontario Select Provincials in her hometown, Cassie Camara, Rosedale Community Council-Youth Softball, Secretary said, “I am thrilled to be working with Softball Ontario to host Provincials to Hamilton and play in my neighbourhood park!”.

Registration for the Provincial Championships will open on May 1st.

If you have any questions in regards to the championships, please email memberservices@softballontario.ca.


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Softball Canada Announces 2018 Women’s Border Battle Roster

Ottawa, Ont. – Softball Canada is pleased to announce the list of athletes who have been selected to represent Team Canada at the Women’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle. The Canadian Women’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle team will be looking to defend its title after winning the inaugural Women’s event in Oklahoma City last summer. This year’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle will be played in Kitchener, Ont. from July 27-29.

Team Canada will play a series of exhibition games before they take on Team USA in a one-game showdown at the Women’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle on July 29th.

“Any time you get the chance to wear a Team Canada jersey it is very special” said head coach Tony Carnelos. “We have assembled a great group of talented players and to be able to defend our title and represent our country in Kitchener in front of our friends and family will be a tremendous honour.”

The list of athletes selected to participate was chosen by the coaching staff and a panel of Slo-Pitch experts from across the country. Performance at provincial, national and international events was used as one of the major contributors to the selections.

The coaching staff will consist of Tony Carnelos (Georgetown, Ont.) who will serve as the head coach with Kelly Hryniw (Ardrossan, Alta.) serving as the assistant coach, with both returning from last year’s winning squad.

The following athletes have been chosen to represent Canada at the 2018 Women’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle:

ATHLETES

FIRST NAME LAST NAME HOMETOWN
Kaitlin Anseeuw Simcoe, Ont.
Jackie Bates Langley, B.C.
Erica Burns West Lorne, Ont.
Tina Gulbrandsen Langley, B.C.
Tonya Gulbrandsen Langley, B.C.
Kiera Lyons Ryley, Alta.
Michelle Lorenz Toronto, Ont.
Jacqueline O’Quinn Toronto, Ont.
Jessica O’Quinn Toronto, Ont.
Patricia Simon Big Horn, Alta.
Paige Smith Gretna, Man.
Kearstin Solberg Ryley, Alta.
Ashley Steckle-Klunder Brantford, Ont.
Lenny Stoddart Bolton, Ont.
Charity (Fez) Verboom Shannonville, Ont.

COACHING STAFF

POSITION NAME HOMETOWN
Head Coach Tony Carnelos Georgetown, Ont.
Assistant Coach Kelly Hryniw Ardrossan, Alta.
Team Leader Ryan DeBelser Prince George, B.C.
Manager – National Teams Mike Branchaud Ottawa, Ont.

 

The full game schedule will be announced at a later date, culminating with a doubleheader featuring the Women’s and Men’s Border Battles between Team Canada and Team USA the evening of Sunday, July 29.

Ticket prices have been set at $25.00 (CDN) for the full weekend pass and $10.00 (CDN) for a day pass. Tickets will go on sale through the Softball Canada website and at the Kahunaverse Sports locations in Mississauga and London on May 1st.

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Softball Canada Announces 2018 Men’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle Roster

Ottawa, Ont. – Softball Canada is pleased to announce the list of athletes who have been selected to represent Team Canada at the Men’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle. The 10th edition of the annual event will take place in Kitchener, Ont. from July 27-29.

Team Canada will play a series of exhibition games before they take on Team USA in a one-game showdown at the Men’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle on July 29th. The Canadian team is coming off an exciting 31-28 win at last year’s Border Battle in Oklahoma City to break Team USA’s six game winning streak.

“As head coach of Team Canada, I’m very excited to face Team USA on our home turf with the chance to defend and prove that last year’s win was earned and by no means good fortune” stated head coach Grant Garrett. “Our 2018 team is very athletic with all-around outstanding defence and speed, but more importantly, full of true gamers that will take this immense challenge head on and fight to the end.”

This will mark the second time the event is played on Canadian soil as Kitchener previously hosted in 2014 with the United States coming out with the 18-9 victory.

The list of athletes selected to participate was chosen by the coaching staff and a panel of Slo-Pitch experts from across the country. Performance at provincial, national and international events was used as one of the major contributors to the selections.

The coaching staff will consist of Grant Garrett (Georgetown, ON) who will serve as the head coach with Mike Hrynenko (Winnipeg, MB) serving as the assistant coach, both of whom are returning from last year’s winning team.

The following athletes have been chosen to represent Canada at the 2018 Men’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle:

ATHLETES

FIRST NAME
LAST NAME
HOMETOWN
Colin
Andrews
Hanover, Ont.
Jeff
Andrews
St. Albert, Alta.
Dave
Goulet
Sherbrooke, Que.
Kyle
Knechtel
Ayr, Ont.
Dany
Laprise
Sherbrooke, Que.
Steele
Lewis
Windsor, Ont.
Jonathan
Malo
Quebec City, Que.
Dustin
McLoughlin
Maple Ridge, B.C.
Ron
Nadalin
Woodstock, Ont.
Curtis
Neabel
Woodstock, Ont.
Chris
Parr
Chilliwack, B.C.
Justin
Pennell
Toronto, Ont.
Hunter
Platten
Edmonton, Alta.
Jeff
Zanolli
Taber, Alta.
Josh
Zanolli
Drayton Valley, Alta.

 

COACHING STAFF

POSITION NAME HOMETOWN
Head Coach Grant Garrett Georgetown, Ont.
Assistant Coach Mike Hrynenko Winnipeg, Man.
Team Leader Ryan DeBelser Prince George, B.C.
Manager – National Teams Mike Branchaud Ottawa, Ont.

 

The full game schedule will be announced at a later date, culminating with a doubleheader featuring the Women’s and Men’s Border Battles between Team Canada and Team USA the evening of Sunday, July 29.

Ticket prices have been set at $25.00 (CDN) for the full weekend pass and $10.00 (CDN) for a day pass. Tickets will go on sale through the Softball Canada website and at the Kahunaverse Sports locations in Mississauga and London on May 1st.

 

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Call for Applications for Coaches Program Committee Chair

TORONTO, ONTARIO – Softball Ontario is now accepting applications for the volunteer position of its Coaches Program Committee Chair. The successful candidate will be an active part of Softball Ontario’s National Coaching Certification Program, which is an opportunity for Coaches across Ontario to enhance their softball coach education.

To help Softball Ontario run a successful Coaching Program, Softball Ontario is looking for a Chair who will take on the task of attending and leading all the Coaches Committee meetings and overseeing daily operations in conjunction with Committee Members and the Softball Ontario’s Technical Program Specialist to ensure assigned tasks are completed by their deadlines. Knowledge and experience in coaching softball is a requirement.

Highlights of the qualifications and responsibilities of the Softball Ontario’s Coaches Committee Chair include:

Qualifications:

  • Strong communication and administrative skills
  • An excellent understanding of the National Coaching Certification Program
  • Must be a “Certified” in Competition-Introduction, Softball Coach
  • Must sign Softball Ontario’s Confidentiality Agreement
  • Must complete Softball Ontario’s Volunteer Application

Responsibilities:

  • To schedule, establish an agenda and chair Coaches Committee meetings
  • To delegate duties as required to Coaches Committee Members and follow up on the completion of these duties
  • To communicate closely with Softball Ontario’s Technical Programs Specialists, Softball Ontario’s Executive Director and report to Softball Ontario’s Board of Directors
  • To determine the Softball Ontario’s Coaches Committee budget (with assistance Softball Ontario Staff)
  • To prepare and present the Coaches Program Report to Softball Ontario Board of Directors at their two (2) annual meetings
  • To organize and ensure the smooth running of Coach Developer training in conjunction with Softball Ontario’s four (4) Master Coach Developers
  • To ensure the delivery of the National Coaching Certification Program for Softball in the Province of Ontario
  • To oversee Softball Ontario’s Coaches Symposium

How to Apply

All interested candidates are asked to apply in writing, expressing their interest along with a detailed resume outlining your Softball, Coaching, Facilitating and professional background and qualifications for this position. Applications should be sent no later than April 30, 2018- 4:30 pm.

In the coming weeks, Softball Ontario will collect and evaluate all applications, and choose a candidate. Softball Ontario is confident that the Coaches Program will be a huge success and will produce future Coaches of tomorrow.

Email your resume to Steph Sutton at ssutton@softballontario.ca, for consideration.

Softball Ontario is the governing body for the sport of softball in Ontario. Our goal is to promote and develop the sport of softball for its athletes, officials, and volunteers by providing programs and services at all levels of competitions.


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Elissa Sivel joins 2018 Webinar Series

Joining our all-star line-up for the 2018 Webinar Series is Softball Ontario Master Pitching Instructor (MPI), Elissa Sivel. Elissa will kick-off our March portion of the series with her session on “Common Problems in Young Pitchers”!

Elissa is regarded as one of the top pitching coaches in Ontario, currently serving as the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees pitching coach. Sivel brings an expansive background that includes representing several PWSA teams at seven National Championships earning silver and bronze medals. Named a two-time OIWFA All-Star, Sivel showed dominance on the field and in the classroom, awarded the Ottawa Award of Merit twice. Elissa is a Softball Ontario MPI, NCCP Coach Developer and a Competition-Introduction, Softball certified Coach.


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Peter Kluszczynski reinstated as Fast Pitch Provincial Umpire-in-Chief

Softball Ontario is pleased to announce that Peter Kluszczynski has been reinstated as the new Fast Pitch Provincial Umpire-in-Chief. Peter previously held this position for eight years, from 2007-2015. He returns with the ambition to further accelerate the growth and development of umpires within the province.

Peter has been involved with the sport of softball since he was five years old. He has seen the game from a player’s perspective, a coach’s perspective, and of course, an umpire’s perspective. Peter has also assumed leadership roles at the local level, as he spent five years as the President of the Brampton Umpires’ Association.

Peter first began volunteering with Softball Ontario as part of the Zone 5 staff, before undertaking the Zone 5 FP Umpire-in-Chief position. Subsequently, he joined the Fast Pitch Umpire Committee as a Deputy Umpire-in-Chief until he inevitably took on the PUIC role. He is a certified Level 5 official who has both officiated and supervised at six different Canadian Championships.

Peter has no shortage of experience on the diamond. He has represented our program and our country at major international competitions, such as the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games and the 2017 Men’s WBSC World Softball Championship. Peter’s leadership, along with his long list of experience, will be a great benefit to the Softball Ontario Umpire Program.

For more information, please contact:

Mike Newell – Umpire Program Coordinator
mnewell@softballontario.ca
416-426-7150 ext.104

Teen Ump Honoured

By Bruce Bell, The County Weekly News/The Intelligencer

They pulled the wool over the umpire’s eyes and got away with it.

For the second time in six months, a young Prince Edward County fastball umpire has been honoured for his outstanding work on the diamond and he didn’t see it coming.

Nate Lasher, 16, was named Fast Pitch Rookie Umpire of the Year by Softball Ontario at a Burlington banquet on the weekend. In August he was named the Zone 9 Junior Umpire of the Year.

Lasher, thought he was in Burlington simply to attend a one-day umpiring symposium and got caught completely off guard was he was named the recipient following dinner.

“Oh, I didn’t see it coming at all and they caught me completely by surprise,” he said during his Thursday lunch break at Quinte Christian High School. “It certainly feels good when people notice your work and I’m very honoured, but I certainly wasn’t expecting it.”

Zone 9 deputy umpire-in chief Gord Nicholls said Lasher appears poised to climb the umpiring ladder with lightning speed.

“He is really young to have his Level 2 (certification), it’s almost unheard of at his age and I have no doubt he’ll be doing his Level 3 as soon as he turns 18,” Nicholls said. “I’m not at all surprised he was named Rookie of the Year – Softball Ontario considers you a rookie for two years – because he has progressed so much in such a short time.”

Last summer Lasher worked a couple of provincial tournaments – Under 14 for both boys and girls – but Nicholls said perhaps his finest work came at the U-12 Eastern Canadian championships in Cobourg.

“He did a very good job at the Cobourg event and I think Nate’s biggest asset is that he is able to meld into a crew with older and more experienced umpires and use the advise they give him,” he said. “His understanding of the rule book is absolutely phenomenal for someone his age and I don’t think there’s any doubt he’ll be doing national events in the very near future.”

Lasher said he understanding the rule book only simplifies life between the base paths, especially for a young umpire.

“Coaches are just about always older than me and if they want something explained and I’m able to do it in a clear and understandable manner, then I think it gives them confidence that I know what I’m doing out there,” he said. “You don’t want to look at a coach who wants something explained and just say, ‘I don’t know,’ – it probably won’t turn out so well.”

Visit www.countyweeklynews.ca for the full article.