Junior White Sox
NZ U19 Junior White Sox 2013 Bloghttp://jws2013.blogspot.co.nz/
ISF Junior Women's World Championship Draw
Junior White Sox Player Profiles
Road to Ontario, Canada
Tietjens supports JWS
Last night saw the famous Gordon Tietjens come to the mighty Hawkes Bay for my fundraiser to represent New Zealand in Brampton Canada for the upcoming U19 Women¹s softball World Series. I was very fortunate to be able to get Gordon to attend as my Guest speaker, it truly made the night. The night saw many of my family members, friends and even some of my school teachers attend.
The night started off with a BBQ demonstration from a well known Hawkes Bay chef where his mouth watering food was served to everyone who attended. Next saw the amazing presentation from Gordon, he spoke about many different aspects of his coaching career from winning gold at the Commonwealth games, to why hes still coaching the game he loves. He was also able to give us such a great insight into why teams are successful.
The presentation was extremely inspiring and motivating leaving many of the people that attended the night feeling the same way. Finally the night concluded with an auction where signed All Blacks playing jerseys, Wellington Sevens tickets and signed sevens jerseys were auctioned off.
Overall the night was a huge success it was enjoyed by everyone who attend, and I am so grateful to everyone that supported me. I hope to make everyone proud of me.
Powerful hitter blasts way into NZ U19 side17/04/2013
Aranui High School's Mikayla Werahiko has the softball world at her feet.
The year 13 student will travel to Brampton, Canada, in July with the Junior White Sox to compete in the world under-19 girls' championships. She will be joined by fellow Cantabrian infielder Cassie Siataga, with pitcher Amy Begg named as a non-travelling reserve.
New Zealand have been grouped in a difficult pool, along with host nation Canada, the United States, Czech Republic, Puerto Rico, Great Britain, Korea and Venezuela.
Werahiko, 17, has played the majority of her career at third base, but will also cover the second base position over in Canada.
She was delighted to have been named in the squad and said she was looking forward to testing herself against the best young softballers in the world.
The Junior White Sox played a warm-up tournament in Auckland in February, where they finished second, and Werahiko said they were improving with each game.
"I reckon we're getting stronger every time," she said.
"We're looking strong. Everyone is working together."
Werahiko has been one of the big movers in Canterbury softball over the past year. Last November, she debuted for the White Sox national senior women's team at the Gilley's Shield Australian interstate competition in Adelaide.
She said it was a shock to be named in the side while she was still at high school, and admitted it had been a great learning experience for her.
"It was quite a surprise. I didn't expect to aim that high, being so young.
"I got a lot of gametime. I got to play third (base), but also outfield as well."
Despite her young age, Werahiko has already been a member of the Canterbury Red Hawks women's side for the past two years. Last year, she was recognised for an outstanding season, being named Canterbury women's softball player of the year.
Red Hawks coach Carl Tuinenga said Werahiko's talent had been evident since a young age. She played Canterbury under-15 representative softball at the age of 10 and had always been well ahead of her peers on the diamond. At last year's national FastPitch tournament with the Red Hawks, Werahiko led off in the batting order and finished as the team's top batter.
"She's been a great player since she was out of nappies really," Tuinenga said.
"She's a very special talent. There's only a couple of them from down this way. She played under-15 reps for four years and they had to take her out in the end, she was so far advanced."
Tuinenga said touring away with the White Sox to Australia last year had been hugely beneficial for Werahiko's game and he had noticed major growth in her play.
"To get selected in that was probably the start of it. She's probably realised how much talent she has.
"She's really progressed in the last two years."
He said she was a very well-rounded player, who was not only a powerful hitter, but also an adept fielder with a strong arm. Werahiko also had a maturity that belied her tender age and did not get fazed in pressure situations.
"She's calm. She doesn't get flustered about anything. She is just a good kid."
Werahiko comes from a talented softball family. Elder sisters Carly and Krystal have also represented the Canterbury Red Hawks. Last year, the family achieved a first for Canterbury women's softball with the three sisters all featuring at the National FastPitch Championships in Lower Hutt.
Mother Gail completed the family connection, managing the team at the tournament.
Werahiko said her sisters had offered tremendous support while she was growing up with her softball, and were always happy to pass on their wisdom.
She has aspirations to gain a scholarship to a United States college next year to play softball and study.
JWS News update23/02/2013
The Junior White Sox are ahead of schedule in their world championship preparation after finishing runners-up at last weekend’s Bev Chote Tournament in Auckland.
After an opening loss to host club Ramblers – the reigning national champions – the youngsters quickly found their feet to roll off three straight wins, including an 8-1 result over previous table-toppers Otahuhu on the Sunday morning.
This outcome set up a five-way tie for the finals spots and the NZ girls’ scoring differential saw them through to face Western Magpies.
After a tight struggle, the Magpies prevailed 3-2, leaving JWS coach Venita Hokai delighted with the results and the work-ons.
“We far exceeded expectations,” she says. “We seem to be well ahead of where we’d hoped to be.
“I thought we hit well all weekend, but didn’t execute the bunt and that probably cost us the final.”
Standout players for the Junior White Sox included Wellington outfielder Kayla Rangiawha, Canterbury infielder Cassie Siataga and Auckland outfielder Tyneesha Houkamu.
“Cassie took some outs at short stop that I’ve never seen a female softballer take,” says Hokai. “Tyneesha was on fire with the bat and took an amazing catch in the outfield in our last game.”
The team will work in regional squads until they assemble for they assemble again for the ISF Junior Women’s World Championships at Brampton, Canada.
They will base themselves in Hawaii and California, playing club age-group teams, before heading to the world tournament, scheduled for July 1-7.
Hokai 'excited' by JWS draw13/02/2013
The Junior White Sox have landed in a tough section that includes defending champions United States and home team Canada at the ISF Women's Junior Championship in Brampton, Ontario.
Seedings released this week see New Zealand join the North American powerhouses in Section A, along with Czech Republic, Puerto Rico, Great Britain, Korea and Venezuela.
Section B will consist of Japan, Australia, Brazil, China, Botswana, Netherlands, Singapore and Mexico.
"In the other section, Japan, Australia, Brazil and China are quite good, and I would imagine even the Mexicans would have a lot of US college players in there.
"The biggest goal for us is to maintain our top-six ranking from last time, but aiming for top four definitely."
Pitchers - Jasmin Kaiaruna (Wellington), Courtney Gettins (Hawke's Bay), Taylor Paige Stewart (University of Wisconsin), Elizabeth Stavert (Auckland) Catchers - Emma Francis (Wellington), Keri Simeon (Wellington) Infield - Kuraroa Ratu-James (Hutt Valley), Cassie Siataga (Canterbury), Danica Ferriso (Hutt Valley), Mikayla Werahiko (Canterbury), Shannon Hearne (West Australia), Ellie Cooper (University of Florida) Outfield - Lauren Tapp (New South Wales), Tyneesha Houkamau (Auckland), Kingsley Avery (Ava Maria University), Kayla Rangiawha (Wellington), Freya Bullock (Auckland)
Seedings set for Junior World Championship11/02/2013
First Open Championship to take place in Brampton, Ontario, Canada
Plant City, Florida (USA) - In 143 days, 16 countries will converge on the City of Brampton to play for the opportunity to call themselves world champions. The City of Brampton bid was awarded the World Championship during the 25th ISF Congress in 2011, held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma USA; this will mark the first ISF Open Championship event opening the door for greater participation of ISF Member Federations. Preparations are underway for the International Softball Federation’s X Junior Women’s World Championship and this release will mark the launching of the event website and the announcement of the seedings.
For more information for the Junior Women’s World Championship that will take place from July 1-7, 2013 in Brampton, Ontario, Canada go to www.jwwc2013.com
In accordance with the ISF Competition & Technical Code, the teams will be in two pools, as follows:
Junior Women’s World Championship 2013 seedings
The game schedule has not yet been finalized but will be released immediately upon its conclusion. The ISF is the world governing body of the sport as recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and SportAccord (formerly the General Association of International Sports Federations). Softball (women's fast pitch) made its Olympic debut at the 1996 Games in Atlanta. There are 128 affiliated countries in the ISF and millions of participants in the sport worldwide.
Media: For more information, please contact at email@example.com, +1-813-864-0100.
Exit makes way for new player to the JWS Squad4/12/2012
Coach Hokai beleives that selecting this team will be much harder than the last World Series team given the amount of talented players in contention. She reports that this is a positive sign as the 2 year turn around of the world championships makes it harder (in the self funded environment) to prepare through international competition.
The NZ Junior World Series team first outing will be at the Bev Chote Classic held at Auckland in February.
With just under 11 months to go to the next Junior Women's World Series in Brampton, Ontario, Canada returning Coach Venita Hokai names her 2012 squad. Coach Hokai plans to build on the success achieved at last years Junior World Series in Cape Town where the JWS finished a credible 5th equal improving from the prior world standing of 11th...more
Media ReleaseMay 2012
Some unfinished business has played its part in Venita Hokai seeking a second term as head coach of the Junior White Sox side.
Hokai was at the helm of the side that finished outside of the top four at last year's tournament in Cape Town, South Africa and is still ruing the missed chances in the side's final game of that tournament against Australia.
"It is always unfinished business when you don't get a gold medal and I am always looking to improve on results," Hokai said.
"I thought our performance in Cape Town was outstanding, and I was very proud of our finish in the top six. We achieved everything we set out to do as a team, personally I am still kicking myself we didn't beat Australia which would have seen us finish fourth, but we were clearly out beaten that day."
Hokai's chance of redemption comes just over a year's time with the 2013 world championship being held in Brampton, Ontario, Canada.
While she has just 15 months before that tournament Hokai will not entirely be starting from scratch with her team with seven of her players, four of which are also members of the White Sox side, that were in Cape Town eligible for the 2013 event.
"Those players know what is expected and no one has a guaranteed spot for 2013, they all will have to prove themselves.
"Any international competition is great for New Zealand women's softball and especially our developing players, the depth is positive. We now need to go back to the Drawing Board and re-group with players that are eligible without disrupting the current programs running now."
Hokai will also be casting her eye for player talent with her travelling to Sydney to watch the national development team play and last year's Junior White Sox assistant coach Kevin Gettins heading to the United States with the players who are eligible for next year.
Hokai sets sights on 2013 Junior World SeriesMay 2012
Venita Hokai has been reappointed as Head Coach of the Junior White Sox through to the Junior Women's World Softball Championships to be held in Brampton, Ontario, Canada in July 2013.
Hokai's recent coaching achievements speak for themselves. At an international level, the Junior White Sox finished 6th at the previous World Championships in Cape Town in 2011 which is five hard fought places ahead of a starting ranking of 11th. At home, Hokai was the winning Coach of the National Fastpitch Championships with the Auckland Angels and her premier club team, the Mt Albert Ramblers, won the Auckland Fastpitch Championships before closing the season as National Club Champions.
Looking forward to the 2013 Worlds, Hokai is planning to lever off success from the last World Champs.
"Momentum has begun last year that I want to build on to get ready for the next World Champs".
This seems like a realistic strategy given that a number of players from the previous team are again eligible in 2013.
With just over 13 months to go, appointing a management team is Hokai's first priority, followed closely by player identification. For that purpose Hokai will be at the International Youth Friendship series in July in Sydney to watch the NZ Development Team compete.
New Zealand U19 Women's Softball Team Profiles 2011October 2011
Profiles of the New Zealand Junior White Sox World Series Team Cape Town, South Africa 2011...download here
JWS News UpdateOctober 2011
They may be celebrating a 6-1 win over Ramblers in the final of the Bears Classic tournament in Auckland over the weekend, but the Junior White Sox under-19 girls softball team still have room for improvement ahead of their world championships in Cape Town, South Africa in December.
"There are still things I would like to see improve over the next few weeks, but overall I am excited about what this team could possibly do," coach Venita Hokai said.
"There is a wide range of skill and speed like no other New Zealand team I have seen before, we just have to believe we are true competitors at an international level."
Adding to that elief for Hokai is that her side was without the United States players Taylor Paige Stewart, Hayley Davis and Ellie Cooper along with Alex Forsyth, from Brisbane.
While it was without those four players, Melbourne based Jessica Hollet made the trip across the Tasman for the weekend and impressed her coach. "I think Jessica will bring that maturity needed as a catcher, she slotted in well with the team, hit well and has some true skill behind the plate," Hokai said.
For Hokai the final was one of mixed feelings - it was against her club side which was also without a trio of players who joined their coach on national duty.
"It wasn't easy. Full credit to my Ramblers team who played with a team that was under strength due to preparations for the Juniors."
Final Team Member NamedOctober 2011
A call up into the national team for NZ to compete at a Junior Women's World Series is a dream come true for 19 year old Melbourne based player Jessica Hollet. Playing against the Junior White Sox at last years Waverley Easter Carnival was an eye opener and Jess reports being impressed by the overall skill and in particular the base running speed of the team...more
JWS News UpdateOctober 2011
Getting game time, exploring combinations and facing tough competition was the goal for the weekend for the Junior White Sox World Series Team during the September training camp in Hawkes Bay from 23 - 25 September 2011...more
New Non-Travelling Reserve Named
Coach Venita Hokai has included 19 year old Melbourne based player Jessica Hollett into the non-travelling Reserves for the NZ Under 19 Women's Softball Team (Junior White Sox). Hollett replaces removed Auckland player Rebecca Hicks...more
Junior White Sox World Series Schedule
2011 ISF Junior Women's World Championship Schedule download here
Junior White Sox Winter Camp
The Junior White Sox World Series Team assembled in Auckland on the 23-24 July for a weekend training camp. Apart from the overseas based players, it was a good feeling to finally get the team together. Saturday started off with a session from former JWS Coach Lynda O'Cain who gave us an insight on the last 2007 Junior World Series. We also had waiata practice lead by Captain Rita Hokianga. We then hit an outdoor defensive session at North Harbour...more
Player withdrawals open the door for another
Due to unexpected withdrawals from the Junior White Sox World Series Team of Arahia Fowell and non-travelling reserve Jordan Mumu both from Hutt Valley, Head Coach Venita Hokai has promoted 18 year old Gillian Wills from the reserve list to the travelling team. Coach Hokai says, "Gillian has been at every gym session, training run and fundraising event since being named as a reserve and has proven her desire to be part of the team"...more
South Africa stays in world sports spotlight
World Championship in Cape Town less than six months away
Plant City, Florida (USA) - The 16 countries that will compete have all officially entered. Media credential applications are being accepted. Tickets go on sale at the end of next week. And engagement on the Web continues to increase.
It's all a part of preparations for the International Softball Federation IX Jr. Women's World Championship in South Africa later this year.
Participants in the (age) 19- and under fast pitch event will be: Argentina, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, China, Chinese Taipei, Czech Republic, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa, USA, and Zimbabwe. The tournament will take place from December 6-17 in Cape Town at the Turfhall Softball Stadium. The venue was originally planned as part of the city's 2004 Olympic bid and is undergoing upgrades in preparation for the world championship.
ISF President Don Porter said, "The organising committee is giving a world-class effort in making this our marquee event of 2011. They are showing great pride in putting South Africa in the spotlight for well over a week while the Junior world championship is going on and I'm confident that the athletes, officials, spectators, and the media will all come away impressed."
In terms of the latter two audiences that the ISF president mentioned, the accreditation process has already opened for media members to apply for covering the tournament. And, for fans, tickets will go on sale next Friday, July 1st.
In both cases - applying for media credentials or purchasing tickets - the destination is the official world championship website, www.jwwc2011.co.za, which also has a link (at the top) to a Facebook page that has been launched for the tournament.
Mr. Porter added that representatives from the ISF will conduct their next site visit from August 6-9, with the last of those serving as a launch day and coinciding with the celebration of Women's Day in South Africa.
The previous edition of the Jr. Women's World Championship was held in the Netherlands (2007), with USA dethroning the defending gold medalist Japan via a 3-1 victory in the grand final.
About the International Softball Federation
THe ISF is the world governing body of the sport as recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and SportAccord (formerly the General Association of Internationsl Sports Federations). Softball (women's fast pitch) made it's Olympic debut at the 1996 Games in Atlanta. There are 127 affiliated countries in the ISF and millions of participants in the sport worldwide. The sport is contested in more than a dozen multi-sport Games. Learn additional details about the Federation at www.ISFsoftball.org.
Media: For more information, please contact ISF Director of Communications Bruce Wawrzyniak at brucew@ISFsoftball.org, +1-813-864-0100, or +1-813-453-8762.
Coach Venita Hokai has named 17 year old Rita Hokianga (Ngati Kahungunu) as Captain of the NZ Under 19s Women's Team (Junior White Sox) heading to the World Series in Capetown, South Africa later this year. Coach Venita explains "It wasn't a hard decision to name Rita as Captain as she has been a part of the national squad since we began 3 years ago...more
Countdown to Capetown
The countdown is on for the NZ Under 19s Women's Softball Team (Junior White Sox) heading to Capetown, South Africa for the International Softball Federation's IX Junior Women's World Series. Coach Venita Hokai has named a World Series Team of 17 players and 4 non-travelling reserves...more
JWS Team Named to go to World Champs in South Africa24 March
Congratulations to the following players for making the Junior White Sox team to attend the World Championships in South Africa later this year. We wish the management team and the players themselves all the best in their preperation for these World Champs.
JWS Bev Chote Classic Team gain respect9 March
Tour Group to U19 Girls World Series9 February
The Williment Travel Group Tour to go to ISF U19 Girls World Series December 2011 in Cape Town, South Africa is now inviting supporters to follow and cheer along the NZ Junior White Sox Team. The tour group is to be lead by Naomi Shaw and indicative prices are based on a minimum of 20 people. Here is the information pertaining to the tour group:
$5,585.00 per person plus taxes (indicative at $490)
Please confirm your interest with firstname.lastname@example.org in the first instance. Prices are indicative only at this stage and deposits will be sought following the naming of the NZ Junior White Sox Team in March 2011.
2011 Squad and Bev Chote team named17 January
Army tests Junior White Sox28 Sept
Junior White Sox new third coach/Technology Advisor20 Sept
Softball New Zealand are pleased to announce the appointment of Israel Nukunuku to the position of third coach/technical advisor for the Junior White Sox through to the 2011 Junior Women’s World Championships. Israel brings a wealth of coaching experience to the role and recently held a similar position with the Danish Men’s team at the 2009 Men’s World Championships.
Israel’s appointment finalises the management team for the Junior White Sox. The squad will be coming together this weekend in Christchurch for a 2 day camp at Burnham Army camp where they will be put through their paces with a challenging programme.
September camp will text squad11 Aug
The Junior White Sox head into a training camp as guests of the NZ Army at Burnham Camp in late September to prepare for what lies ahead. Head Coach Venita Hokai states “we are under no illusion that our recent success in Melbourne can be rated against the rest of the world. We are still a long way off where we need and want to be. It is now crucial we leave those results behind and work on the next phase of our preparation”.
Burnham Camp is an ideal setting to challenge the players mentally and physically outside of their comfort zone. The squad have been notified to “get ready” for Burnham. This will be no holiday camp, and players will get “found out” if they haven’t prepared!
The coming year will be a huge for all Under 19 female players as the final Junior White Sox World Series Team will be named in late February 2011. With the World Series in Capetown, South Africa in December 2011, we have time on our side to work with the final team. Attendance at the Southern Cross tournament in April in Christchurch is confirmed. Arrangements are yet to be nailed down regarding an international tournament in July as well as attending various local Premier Women’s tournaments. Planning is underway for a build-up for the World Series to begin late November.
Coach Hokai says “we have to take the best possible team and explore every option both local and international. Every position is up for grabs, and players need to buy into the fact that it is not just about making a NZ team, it is about wanting to be a “World Champion”.
The Junior White Sox welcomes Nicky Hansen to the team as Medic/ Strapper. Coach Hokai believes that Nicky’s expertise together with recent experience with the NZ White Sox in Venezuela provides value and depth to the management team.
Junior White Sox return home victorious after test series win8th April
A dream tour ended last evening when the NZ Under 19s Junior White Sox (JWS) returned home from Melbourne with the rare scalp of the Australian Junior Squad after winning the test series 2 – 1. The first game played at 6pm on the 5 April was won by Australia 5-0. The second game at 10am the next day saw the JWS win 7-1. The final decider was immediately after which was live streamed via the internet. The JWS were solid in defense and continued to pound away at Australian pitchers adding a run or two each innings. The highlight was an automatic home run by Kat Hiku over the left / centre field fence in the 5th inning.
The test series was played after the JWS won the Waverley Easter Carnival which saw them win all 11 games against under 19 representative sides from Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, ACT and Queensland.
Captain Rita Hokianga (Hawkes Bay) said “we had great team spirit and believed we could do it, everyone did their job and played their part. It was great to win the Waverley Easter Carnival, but even better to beat the Australians on their home ground”. Head Coach Venita Hokai believes the result means that we are closing the gap against Australia and that the win sets down the template for women’s softball in NZ. She states “we are still a long way off where we need to be for the World Series next year, but this win leaves players more confident on the world stage”.
Team: Rita Hokianga, Captain (Hawkes Bay), Tania Puketapu (Brisbane), Micah Ropata (Melbourne), Beth Stavert, Santana Harris, Anita Leeuw, Kingsley Avery, Fa’alele Tuala, Te Reo Powhiri Matautia (Auckland), Kuraroa Ratu-James, Arahia Fowell,(Hutt Valley), Jardene Tipa (Wellington), Keely Wells, Kataraina Hiku (North Harbour), Kaysi Rawiri, Robyn Hall (Canterbury)
Staff: Aroha Metcalf, Manager (Marlb), Venita Hokai, Head Coach (Auckland), Kevin Gettins, Asst Coach and Keith Dare, Scorer (Hawkes Bay), Sue Harrison, Videographer and Nicky Hansen, Medic (Canterbury)