Archive for February, 2005

Totally unofficial ISC II Rankings – really, it’s just for fun!

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2005

Tried this over at the board and got some strong reactions – good and bad – so we’ll try it here too.

Changed things a bit based on some initial feedback, so don’t be alarmed that this one is slightly different than the initial draft.

As stated on, don’t take it too seriously because it’s certainly possible that I’ve missed teams or under or over estimated teams. Also, a couple teams may have pitchers who aren’t eligible for ISC II and that could impact their ranking or even their eligibility, so please don’t get too bent out of shape if your team isn’t here or isn’t as high up as you think it should be. Have fun with it – and remember, it doesn’t mean a thing until it’s on the field.

Rank Team
1 Harriston, ON Mercurys
2 Tavistock, ON Smully’s Tavistock Merchants
3 Gladstone, MB Whips
4 Lantzville, BC Atlas Truss
5 Galesville, WI Wilber Lime
6 Seattle, WA Bodle Chiropractic
7 Micksburg, ON Twins
8 Lloydminster, AB Scope Dodgers
9 Norwich, ON Razorbacks
10 Appleton, WI The Bar of Appleton (more…)

Qualifiers for Nebraska, South Dakota, and W. Iowa Set

Sunday, February 20th, 2005

A pair of automatic berths in each of two international fastball tournaments will be the prizes when the cream of the crop of men’s fastball teams from the states of Nebraska, South Dakota, and western Iowa gather this summer in Omaha, Nebraska.

ISC Commissioner Chuck Welker has announced that the qualifying tournaments to determine representatives from both the Area and from the Travel League (Welker is Commissioner of both) will be held in Omaha, Nebraska.

The location will be the Seymour Smith Complex, 72nd and Harrison, in Omaha.

The dates will be:

** May 21 – 22, 2005, AND
** July 2 – 3, 2005.
(NOTE: A rain date would be July 4.)

The format will be Round Robin.

And just what is “on the line” in these qualifiers?

TWO spots in the ISC World Tournament, to be held August 12 – 20 in Eau Claire, Wis.

TWO spots in the ISC – II Tournament of Champions, to be held August 14 – 19 in Chippewa Falls, Wis.

Entry fee is $480 (Less $200 per team) NOTE: The “less $200 per team” is a raffle program where each team sells 20 tickets – – at $10 – – for a Hy-Vee Food Store gift certificate which will be drawn for on the final day of play. Each team will keep the money from the raffle tickets sold, thus reducing the entry fee to a net of $280.

To enter the qualifier, or for more information, contact:

Chuck Welker
4954 Stream Side Circle
Des Moines, Iowa, 50317
Phone: 515-262-2977

Jan. 20, 2005
By: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer

Lots of ISC-II at

Saturday, February 19th, 2005

From ISC II Commissioner, Blair Setford:

With the launch of, in no small part due to the tremendous contributions of Jim Flanagan, I am hoping to duplicate, albeit on a smaller scale, the success of Our focus will be on fastball in the hotbed of Ontario, particularly the ISC II brand of ball.

Most of the press in the game goes to the big boys – the teams and players that compete on the ISC World Tournament stage, at the Pan-Am Games and the quadrennial ISF World Series. And it should.

To borrow from the PGA – These guys are good. Nothing beats seeing the game of fastball played by the best players in the world. It’s a shame that we’ve never been able to successfully translate that poetry on grass to the television screens across North America. (More on that in a future guest column.)

But for every team competing at the ISC World Tournament, there are probably five, maybe 10, maybe 25 or even 50 teams that don’t have budgets the size of small Caribbean islands who play for the love of the game and the purity of the competition.

It was for these guys that the ISC II division was started a few years back and it’s where my passion for the game comes from. These players are the unheralded stalwarts of the game who are keeping it alive in all four corners of North America.

And, yes, these guys are good, too. They can run and hit and catch and make plays that will take your breath away. Only it’s not every play, and the imperfections in the game make one appreciate the gems sometimes a little more.

So, what can you expect at First you’ll get coverage of the Golden Horseshoe Fastball League. Beyond that, we’ll provide regular updates on the Ontario Top 10 Intermediate Teams, polls on the best hitters and pitchers, the best bats, the top parks to play in and much, much more.

Rumours and rankings are your thing? Log into the forums and talk all you want about who’s the best and why. If you’ve got a hot scoop, pass it along.

We’re going to experiment with posting video and audio clips during the year along with still pix. Now, unless Maddy and Jim move to Toronto in the next three months, we’re not going to have anything along the lines of the beautiful galleries of photos that Maddy regularly graces us with, but we’ll try to post some new stuff every couple of weeks.

Lastly, tell us what you’d like to see on More polls? More rankings? More outside-Ontario material? More tournament coverage? More league coverage? is literally in its infancy and the direction it takes as it grows is going to be determined by you, the readers. Please voice your opinion. We’ll be listening.


Blair Setford

Survey Says: “ISC II a Solid Success”

Thursday, February 10th, 2005

ISC II a Solid Success Says Survey The International Softball Congress (ISC) is pleased to announce the results of a recent survey of team managers, player representatives and other participants that point to the success of the ISC II division. “We will take these results and study them to see where we can continue to improve the experience of teams and players at the ISC II Tournament of Champions, but this tells us that we are clearly on the right track,” said ISC II Vice-President Bob McGowan. Conducted over a one-month period between Dec. 15, 2004 and Jan. 15, 2005, an invitation to complete the online survey was sent to a total of 107 people with 59 providing responses by the deadline. “We are thrilled with the quantity and quality of the feedback we’ve received with this survey,” said ISC II Commissioner Blair Setford, noting that all but one of the teams that participated in the 2004 ISC II Tournament of Champions responded, along with 25 teams that either competed at previous ISC II events or have played in other post season championships. Overwhelmingly, survey respondents declared the ISC II Tournament of Champions (ToC) as the top tournament for this caliber of play. A clear majority prefer the current ToC format, including the existing playoff schedule, although there is a substantial minority that would like the schedule to be compressed. Opinion is split on whether to reduce the number of allowed out-of-area players and pitchers permitted on ISC II teams as many were specific in their comments that ISC II should be preserved for local teams. Many respondents also want to see the ToC champion move up to the ISC World Tournament through the provision of an automatic berth in the following year’s World Tournament. Other highlights include: * Respondents definitely want the ToC championship game played on the final Saturday. * There is significant support for inviting international club teams to the ToC. * ISC II players spent a lot of time and money at the 2004 World Tournament site. * More needs to be done to promote the ISC II program, including a dedicated ISC II web site, state/provincial or regional rankings and increased commissioner contact. * Two-thirds of respondents say that having the ToC at the same time and place as the WT is very or extremely important. Click here to view the full results of the survey online.

Three respondents were chosen at random to receive an ISC Prize Pack consisting of official ISC apparel. The winners are: Frank Keating Jr., Wilkes-Barre, PA Keating’s Fitness Center Kim Fuerniss, Wichita, KS Athletic Club Jeremy Petersen, Walcott, IA Walcott Coliseum The fourth annual ISC II Tournament of Champions will take place August 14-19 at Casper Park in Chippewa Falls, WI. The tournament will feature 40 teams from across North America playing a four-game round robin schedule in eight pools of five teams each. The top three teams from each pool advance to a single elimination playoff bracket. The ISC is a non-profit corporation organized for the promotion and administration of men’s and boy’s fastpitch softball throughout North America. Athletes participating in ISC tournaments come from literally all over the world to play the game of fastball at its highest levels.

For more information, please contact: Blair Setford ISC II Commissioner 416.681.8803 Bob McGowan ISC II Vice President 905.672.7473 Ken Hackmeister ISC Executive Director 801.447.8807 <

I.S.C. Qualifiers Set for Colorado/New Mexico and Arizona/Nevada Areas

Wednesday, February 9th, 2005

There is a lot of territory in the four-state I.S.C. areas which include the states of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada.

And the finest men’s fastball teams from these four states will be in a battle royale for several key berths in international fastball competition.

Area Commissioner (and I.S.C. President) Dick Mason is announcing the dates, site, and other information for the qualifying tournament from the area.

The dates will be the weekend of June 25 and 26.

The location will be Alamosa, Colorado.

At stake in the weekend event will be: One berth in the ISC World Tournament and Two berths in the ISC – II Tournament of Champions. Those two events will be held in Eau Claire and Chippawa Falls, Wisconsin, in August, 2005.

The format will be Round Robin pools with a single elimination playoff.

Participating teams will be guaranteed a minimum of four games.

The entry fee will be $325.

The deadline for entry will be May l, 2005.

And of course the qualifier is open to men’s fastball teams from the states of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada.

To enter, or for more information, contact:

Dick Mason
739 W. Littleton Blvd.
Littleton, Colorado 80120
Phone: 303 – 797-9101
Fax: 303 – 795-3356

Feb. 9, 2005
By: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer

Michigan Area ISC and ISC – II Qualifier Set for Frankenmuth

Thursday, February 3rd, 2005

Tom Stasik, International Softball Congress Michigan Area Commissioner, is announcing the details for a qualifying tournament for teams from his Area.

The qualifier is set for the weekend of July 8 – 10, 2005.

The location will be Heritage Park in Frankenmuth.

Automatic berths for both the ISC World Tournament and for the ISC – II Tournament of Champions will be at stake in the Frankenmuth event.

The format will be Double Elimination.

Entry fee is $250.

To enter, or for more information, contact:

Tom Stasik
423 Mary Lane
Frankenmuth, MI

February 3, 2005
From: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer

I.S.C. Qualifiers for Northern Illinois Berths in World Tournament and Tournament of Champions Set

Tuesday, February 1st, 2005

I.S.C. Qualifiers for Northern Illinois Berths in World Tournament and Tournament of Champions Set

Aurora, Illinois, will be the location, and Jericho Field will be the site.

And the top men’s fastball teams in the Northern Illinois Area will gather at that location to battle for spots in both the ISC World Tournament and the ISC – II Tournament of Champions!

Commissioner John Reed is announcing the location, entry fee, and all details for this event.

The format for the qualifier will be Round Robin with a playoff.

The event will be a single combined tournament which will qualify teams for both the ISC World Tournament and for the ISC – II Tournament of Champions.

There will be a three-game minimum guarantee.

Entry fee will be $200.

To enter, or for more information, contact:

John Reed
Phone: 815 – 563-4303 or 815 – 563-4318
E-mail: or

Feb. 1, 2005
By: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer

Minnesota ISC Area Tournaments Set

Tuesday, February 1st, 2005

Les Novak, Minnesota Area Commissioner (and also commissioner for the Gopher State Travel League) is announcing dates and details for both his Area Tournament as well as his Travel League.

The Gopher State Travel League will function on the weekends of May 20 – 22 and June 10 – 12.

The Area Tournament will be held on June 11 – 12.

All games on each of these dates will be played in Stillwater, Minnesota, at the Lilly Lake Softball Complex.

The Area Tournament will qualify teams for both the ISC World Tournament as well as the ISC – II Tournament of Champions.

Entry fees are set at $450 for the 10 games in Travel League play. The entry fees for the area qualifying tournaments have not yet been announced.

To enter either event, or for more information, contact:

Les Novak, Commissioner

Feb. 1, 2005
By: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer

Northwest ISC Qualifiers Set for Vancouver

Tuesday, February 1st, 2005

Northwest ISC Commissioners Keith Erkenbrack and Craig Donaldson have announced the dates and location for the qualifying tournaments for teams from their area. Automatic berths will be at stake for both the ISC World Tournament and for the ISC – II Tournament of Champions.

The dates will be the weekend of June 17 – 19, 2005.

The qualifiers will be hosted by the South Hill Sports Association

Location will be South Memorial Park in Vancouver, B.C.

Entry fee is $200 CDN.

Format will be Round Robin with a Single Knockout final.

To enter, or for more information, contact:

Craig Donaldson
phone: 604 – 525-3440

Feb. 1, 2005
By: Gordon Wise
ISC Information Officer