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President’s Message 2009


President’s Message: 2009 has been another fine year for our club. We had a great time at the 2008 Holiday party thanks to Donna O'Farrell and her committee. Terry Whitfield provided our members with an excellent batting clinic. Our Club tournament in June and the One Pitch tournament were very successful once again thanks to all the work put in by various Board and Club members. I want to say a special thanks to Dennis Logie for organizing our first annual Señors Games. The two day event was a great hit among those members who were able to participate. We are looking forward to making this an annual event. Another thank you goes out to Pat Michael and his Holiday Party committee as they continue to prepare another great party for us this year.

Finally I would like to comment on the progress that has been made on one of the Board's major goals for 2009—increasing the number of club members who volunteer to get directly involved with club activities. We have a number of events throughout the year that require lots of preparation to make successful. This year, we have seen a small increase in volunteer participation and are looking to at least double that for 2010. The Club offers its members a lot more than just playing softball on Tuesday nights or Day Play. If we are going to grow and continue to attract new members, everyone needs to get involved and help out when needed. Let's have a great 2010!

New Officers: At the annual meeting, Bill Picht was elected as the new president of the club; Dennis Logie as vice president; Bob Cushman as treasurer; and Dave Reck as recording secretary. Other board members are Debbie Coyne, Al Davis, Joe Kirby, Glenn Kovas, and Pat Michael. Donna O’Farrell is appointed membership secretary.

Sincerely,

Bill Picht

Activities and Events

Holiday Party on December 5: The club’s annual Holiday party will be held on Saturday night, December 5, at the Veteran’s Memorial Building. Board Member Pat Michael is coordinating with help from Donna O’Farrell, and Ginger Mah. They promise a splendid buffet meal, lots of raffle prizes, an open bar, dancing, the announcement of Most Improved Player of the Year, and fun and fellowship. If you have an item to donate for the raffle, please contact Helen Amaya at 368-8916. Last year’s party had 110 in attendance and our most improved player for 2008 was the effervescent George Brownfield.

Annual Meeting: The annual meeting of the club will be at the Senior Center on January 4, 2010. At that time, election of officers will take place, board members will be elected, and other agenda business items will be addressed. Every member is welcome to attend.

Saturday League Begins November 21: This year’s Saturday League will begin on November 21, with 7 teams. It will begin at Hawes Park, but Hawes is scheduled to be renovated in late December, and the league will move to San Carlos to complete the season. All games are double-headers beginning at 9:00, 11:30, and 2:00. There is often room for walk-ons to play each Saturday for teams missing players that day. All members of teams, and walk-ons, must be members of the Señors. Bruce Barnes is this year’s commissioner of this league that will end February 13.

Tuesday Night Winter League: The Tuesday night Winter League began in September. Debbie Coyne is serving as the commissioner and the league plays in the evening at Hawes Park until the renovation. The league ends in February.

One Pitch Tournament: The annual Fourth of July One-Pitch Tournament and picnic was a rousing success with 8 teams with 112 players participating and a large crowd of 170 fans present on this holiday occasion. Teams were balanced for skills and age, with each team pitching to itself. Play was followed by the traditional BBQ picnic.

Jack Hoover’s Hawks won first place in the National League Oldsters division, followed by Warren Goodnow’s Badgers and third was Glenn Kovas’s fighting Woodchucks. Glenn noted that if only his woodchucks had chucked slightly more wood, which Glenn knew they could, they would and should have been victorious.

In the American League Youngsters games, the Carl Woodruff Woodies were undefeated and won over Ric Ferras’s Manlymen and John Leland’s battling Razorbacks where the Manlymen won second in the last inning. Kevin Coyne’s Titans and Mike Maguire’s 49ers also competed.

Two special players participated in the July 4 Tournament. Larry Shavel, 88 years old, was the honorary first batsman to kick off the tournament. Tom Dower, 90 years old, and the club’s oldest member, also played, not only batting, but in the field along with “protector” Tim Goode.

July 4 Fireworks: At the annual one-pitch tournament, Joe Kirby was jumping and dodging sizzling line drives up the middle from his own team! Eventually his luck ran out and he was drilled. He was later observed eating his post game meal standing up and he requested that witnesses reassure his wife that his buttocks tattoo was only temporary.

Club Tournament a Success: The Redwood City Tournament in June was completely filled with 24 teams playing, and two turned away because brackets were full. George Stallos was the Tournament Director and there were many compliments on the well-run tourney, the all-weather fields, the excellent umpires, the beautiful weather and the awards.

Tuesday Night Summer League: This summer’s Tuesday night league was an active and competitive one. Thanks to Debbie Coyne and Bill Picht for serving as commissioners of this league.

San Bruno Competition: In the interests of fostering senior softball, the Señors have been playing home and away competitions against a team from San Bruno. Ron Albrecht is putting the teams together.

Trip To the San Jose Giants: Our annual Baseball and BBQ night to see the San Jose Giants play on June 4, was the best attended ever. We had 50 members and families present for the event, organized by Glenn Kovas. Great food, lively game (although the Giants lost), and we watched the S.F. Giants’ rookie star, Buster Posey as a DH One of the highlights was that a designated batter on the visiting Bakersfield team was the Beer Batter. If he struck out, beer was half price for 15 minutes. He struck out swinging the first time to a rousing cheer. He struck out three innings later to even a louder cheer. In the seventh, when it was a bit late to offer half-price beer, the stadium offered half-price Martinelli’s Apple Juice—and he struck out again!

Club Information

Deadline for Dues Is December 31: Just a reminder that dues can be paid at any time for the full year of 2010. New members after October 1 who pay their dues for 2009 through the end of the year will also be covered for 2010! What a bargain! Why not think of someone you can bring along to join the Señors? Please note that after January 1, only paid up members will be able to participate in open play, a league, or be part of a subsidized team for tournament play. We are also interested in updates on address, phone, and e-mail information to keep our large and growing roster current.

What Your Dues Cover Annual dues are still $35.00 for the entire year to be a member of the Redwood City Señors Softball Club. What do these dues cover? A variety of things: first of all, the opportunity for athletic activity to keep us sprightly; new softballs every day for open play about 140 times a year; liability insurance for members while playing; support for club sponsored teams in their tournament play; costs for hosting the annual Redwood City Tournament and the July Fourth One-Pitch Tournament and picnic; subsidizing a Holiday Party; and more. What a bargain!

Hall of Fame The club is proud to announce that two more of its members, Bob Strand and Noel Lanctot, are joining Jack Hoover and Dean Perkins in the Northern California Senior Softball Association Hall of Fame.

Bob, “Mr. Tomahawk” Strand is known for his batting prowess, especially on high pitches, but he was voted into the Hall for his long-serving role as webmaster of the outstanding NCSSA website at www.ncssa.info and his development of player search engines, tournament distance calculators and many other innovations.

Noel Lanctot has been a regional representative to NCSSA for years, served often as secretary, and is a feared hitter and member of the National Senior Softball Hall of Fame

We Remember: In 2008/09, we lost one club member, Pete Moore from Vancouver, Canada, who passed away on December 17, 2008, at age 63. Pete was a photographer and world traveler, and enlivened our conversation when he traveled down to play with us in Redwood City.

Stew Holt, in his 80s, passed away in Oregon back in 2007, moving there some years ago

Señors to Cuba: Initiated by John Gordon, many of our club members traveled to Cuba last November to play softball against Cuban teams in a friendly series. They were met by Hurricane Paloma! and a Cuban senior team a bit unclear on the rules (such as sliding into home and taking out catcher Bill Beshore, putting him on the injured list for three months. Bill notes he was out!). Combined with sightseeing there, and in the Caribbean, it was a grand trip. As a good will gesture, the team took 250 items, weighing 225 pounds of donated sports equipment to give to Cuban players and younger players. The equipment was received gratefully by teary-eyed Cubans.

Information: Rain Line and New Web Site: If you are concerned about field conditions, location of open play, rain conditions at tournaments out of the area, and many other items, the club has an info line at 650-363-1140. It’s accessible 24-hours a day. Check there first for information. The club also has a new web site at www.seniorsoftball.us.

Club Hats Still Available: Day Commissioner Glenn Kovas still has some club baseball hats with the latest design available for sale. If you would like one, they are $8.00. Glenn is present Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at day play.

Tournament Results For Sponsored Teams:

As another tournament season draws to a close, we had eight club-sponsored teams participating throughout northern California and in other states. Our sponsorship involves paying ASA registration, liability insurance, $400 supplement toward tournament fees, and free entry in our own Redwood City Tournament. In a positive 2009 season, all teams won at least one tournament! Congratulations.

The most successful team was our State Roofing Royals 70 team which won 4 tournaments and ranked 78, was the third-highest ranked 70s team and had a 61% winning percentage in games. They were also the most active team with 16 tournaments entered and won the NCSSA Championship in August.

The Redwood City Bay Supporters was our highest ranked team at 33, and they won 1 tournament out of 9 entered and won 41% of their tournament games.

The Redwood City Cardinals had a relatively high ranking of 72 and won two tournaments. They also had the best winning percentage with 62% of their games won in their 8 tournaments. The Redwood City Chiefs 70s, ranked 90, was very active with 13 tournaments. Their overall game wins were just over .500, but they won gold in two tournaments.

The State Roofing Royals 65 team won 58% percent of their games in 10 tournaments, which resulted in two tournament championships and a 69 ranking. The Redwood City Chiefs 75s entered an amazing 15 tournaments, winning two, and ending up winning 46% of their games and ranked 104. They also won the gold watch at the NCSSA Championship in August.

The newly formed Redwood City Five 0’s, ranked 46, won one tournament out of 5 entered in their initial year. They won at a 38% rate. Our second new team was the Redwood City Blues who also won a tournament of the 6 they entered and were ranked 106 with a games winning percentage of 43%.

2010 Tournament Dates: For those of you who like to plan ahead, our annual Redwood City Tournament for teams throughout California will be held on June 19/20, 2010. Our One-Pitch Tournament will be on Monday, July 5, 2010.

More......

See's Candy: Brenda Guzman has registered the club with See's Candy for the "quantity discount" program for the Christmas Season. The catalog and order forms will be available on the Señors web site.

Great night of fun, laughter, and sports. Surprisingly, only Rich Simonson brought his glove to catch the foul balls, but since we got premier seats behind home plate, no foul came within reach.

True Story? An unnamed older member of the Club was driving down El Camino when he saw the flash of a traffic camera. He figured that his picture had been taken for exceeding the limit. But...how could that be? He did not think he was speeding.

Just to be sure, he went around the block and passed the same spot, driving more slowly, but again the camera flashed. Next time, he drove even slower. But, as he passed the corner again, the traffic camera again flashed Being a thorough and methodical tournament player by training and experience, he tried a fourth time, but got the same result. He did this a fifth time when the camera flashed as he rolled past, this time at a snail's pace.

Two weeks later, he got five tickets in the mail for driving without wearing a seat belt!

Señor Games:

The first annual Señors Games, suggested by Rich Simonson, began on October 1 and ended on October 8. It was an illuminating time as many athletes were heralded in this exhibition of softball skills.

Hit For Distance: Angelo Rizzato was the winner of the 50s, closely followed by Bob Ligh and Rocco Stagnaro. Joe Kirby with three towering blasts (two of them over the fence and his longest to deep center field) was a narrow winner over Jim Pierce in the 60-64s, with Richard Foley taking third and hitting the ball the farthest on the roll. Joe Cunningham, nearly 70, dominated the 65-69 bracket, and was the only other batter in the event to hit one over the fence, while a second struck the fence. Bob Beckstrom was second and Jerry Marsh a surprising third (since most people thought Jerry only hits placement balls). In the 70-74s, Bill Guzules, all the way from San Jose, was the winner over Don Jones and Jim Theisen. In the over 75 group, Morris Hosoda sent a blast to deep left field to take first over Paul Amaya and Ken Smith at second and third. In the women’s bracket, Brenda Guzman was the winner and Jyi Lampley came in second.

Hit For Accuracy: This event was made a bit more difficult because our pitching machine, Old Sparky, had trouble sending every ball consistently over the plate and you might get an inside pitch to hit to the opposite field! Surprisingly, the best scores overall were from the older hitters! Phil Scatena won the 50s with 2 out of 5 hit to the correct fields. In the 60-64s, Richard Foley hit 4 out of 5, and only Barry Lewis came close with 3 out of 5. In the 65-69s, Pat Michael showed off his acknowledged prowess with 4 out of 5, and Jerry Marsh and Bob Strand came closest with 3 of 5 (and we saw the first contestant with a 0 for 5 result!). In the 70-74, we had the first athlete with a perfect score, Jim Theisen, with 5 for 5. It was a necessary effort since both Bob Cushman and Buddy Hollinger were 4 of 5—winning scores in other brackets. In the 75 & older group, Morris Hosoda and George Payne tied for first with 2 for 5. And in the women’s division, Brenda Guzman wowed the crowd with her perfect 5 for 5.

Fly Ball Catching: There were many excellent performances in catching fly balls on the run. In the 50s, Bob Mar and Rich Wachter tied with a perfect 6 for 6 performance. In the 60-64s, John Gordon, Jim Pierce, Harry Smith, and Hiroshi Tarumi all tied with 6 for 6 performances (we’ll have to make it more difficult next year). In the 65-69s, Jerry Marsh, Rich Simonson, and Bob Strand all tied with unsurpassed 6 for 6 scores. They won’t have anyone run the bases for Strand again after this performance. Roger Severin, battling the gout, was in the running until missing the last fly ball. In the 70-74s, Bill Beshore, Bob Cushman, and Tim Goode all had the same 6 for 6 scores, although the edge was given to Goode who made a running, falling, rolling catch and gained spectator applause for style points. In the 75 & over division, ageless players Paul Amaya and Joe Bozzuto won with their perfect 6 for 6 performances. Brenda Guzman went 6 for 6 in the women’s division, and Jyi Lampley improved each try from a complete miss to a running catch.

Ground Ball Fielding: We had to make this event more difficult, first with a running attempt and then by cranking up the pitching machine to the max. In the 50s, Tony Correia and Rocco Stagnaro tied for first with perfect scores, with Angelo Rizzato coming in third. In the 60-64s there was a 5 way tie with perfect scores, and it took 3 rounds of increasing distance and ball speed to determine the winners: Hiroshi Tarumi and John Hopkirk tied for first with 11 for 12, and Jim Pierce came in third. Howard Patridge, the old third baseman, won the 65-69s, and Bob Stand came in second. Among the 70-74s we had another tie with perfect scores, this time with three fielders, and the tie breaker resulted in Bob Cushman and Dave Reck remaining perfect to tie for first, with Bill Beshore third. Competition was equally intense in the over 75 division, with Paul Amaya and Joe Bozzuto tying for first with perfect scores, and Richard St. Denny at third. The women’s was a narrow competition with Jyi Lampley winning first by one catch over Donna O’Farrell.

Home To First: The running races helped establish who really IS the fastest, although a few speed demons had to miss the competition. The 50s was a tight race with Rich Wachter at 3.7 seconds narrowly edging Bob Mar at 3.8. In the 60-64s, John Gordon edged out John Hopkirk, 4.0 to 4.1. In the next bracket, in another nail biter, Bob Beckstrom reached first in 3.7 to Rich Simonson’s 3.8, with Dave Arrigoni at 4.1 for third. The largest group was the 70-74s, where Don Nebiolini came in first with a sizzling 3.9, closely followed by Bill Guzules and Dave Reck tied for second at 4.0. Do you realize all three of these greyhounds are on the same tournament team?! In the women’s event, Ginger Mah won with a 5.4, and in an exhibition in the 75+, Richard St. Denny ran a 5.0

Home To Home: In the 50s, it was Tony Correia with a 13.4 around all four bases for first, Bob Mar second at 13.7 and Bob Ligh at 14.4 seconds. In the next group, Ken Graham took home the gold with a 13.9, followed by John Hopkirk at 14.6 and John Gordon at 15.2 for the 60-64s. In the 65-69s, Bob Beckstrom won again with 13.4, tied for he fastest run of the day in all age groups, followed by Rich Simonson at 14.0 and Dave Arrigoni at 15.9. The 70-74s were led by Bill Guzules at 14.2, Don Nebiolini at 14.6, and Mike Kirkpatrick at 14.8, and yes, Mike is on that same tournament team! The 75s were won by Richard St. Denny at 18.5.

Pitch For Accuracy: The running over, it was time for pitching. Ray Chun won the 60-64s with 4 out of 8 pitches striking the mat. In the 65-69s, Dennis Logie had 7 of 8, followed by Bob Beckstrom with 5 of 8, and a tie for third for Jerry Marsh and Pat Michael with 4 of 8. Bill Beshore dominated the 70¬74s with 5 of 8, followed by George Stallos with 3 and Don Nebiolini with 1. Paul Amaya showed his experience in the 75+ with 5 of 8, followed by Ken Smith with 3. Ginger Mah was the women’s leader and took home the blue ribbon.

Third To First Throw: This was harder than expected. There were 26 athletes trying for the gold, but there were no perfect scores. In the 50s, all three contestants went 3 for 5, and in the playoffs with further distance, Rocco Stagnaro was the winner, followed by Ric Ferras and Angelo Rizzato. In the 60-64s, Ron Sorg set the standard with 4 of 5, followed by a 4 way tie for second with 3 of 5 by Bruce Barnes, Jim Pierce, Harry Smith, and Hiroshi Tarumi. Bob Strand narrowly won the 65-69s with 3 of 5 over Pat Michael’s 2. The largest division of all the events was the next 70¬74s with ten contestants. Tim Goode was first, equaling the all-division record with 4 of 5, followed by three athletes with 3 of 5, Mike Kirkpatrick, Dave Reck, and Louis Schultz. Mo Hosoda won the 75+ with 3 of 5 and Joe Bozzuto coming in second with 2. In the women’s final, Jyi Lampley was the winner.

Center Field Throw: The Señors Games began with a test of strength and ended with another strength and accuracy test, the 150 foot throw from center field. Bonus points were given for hitting the screen at home on the fly and for a one bounce hit. In the 50s, there were a lot of strong arms, and the winning score was 5 by Bob Ligh, followed by Rocco Stagnaro in second and Rich Wachter in third. The 60-64s were dominated by Ron Sorg with the highest all-division score of the day with 9, followed by Ken Graham and Harry Smith tied for second with 3. In the 65-69s, Pat Michael won with a creditable 3. In the 70-74s, understandably, no one hit the screen on the fly, but Bob Cushman had an excellent 4, followed by Mike Kirkpatrick and Louis Schultz tied for second. In the 75+, Ken Smith got on the scoreboard and won the blue ribbon A great two days of competition, with lots of interesting observations about the value of experience, the difference that ten years can make in some categories, and with a ton of help by many volunteers setting up sound equipment, shagging stray balls, helping judge events, feeding Old Sparky, and many, many other tasks. The competition finished early on the final day and the winners went home satisfied, their blue ribbons photographed for posterity. We’ll do it again next year!