Five UCLA Players Named to USA Softball Women's National Team
June 19, 2006
Five former UCLA softball players including Andrea Duran, Tairia Mims Flowers, Stacey Nuveman, Amanda Freed and Natasha Watley, are among the 17 player selected for the 2006 Women's National Team, USA Softball announced today. The team will compete in Oklahoma City, July 13-17, for the II World Cup of Softball presented by Kellogg's Frosted Flakes and then travel to Beijing, China, for the ISF Women's World Championships. The U.S., which finished second, last year to Japan at the inaugural World Cup, will be looking to keep the World Cup on American soil.
Thirty of the nation's top female softball players participated in the Women's National Team Selection camp, June 13-15, in Chula Vista, Calif., and now 17-players move on to represent the U.S. this summer.
Eleven members of the gold medal team from the 2004 Olympic Games were named to the roster for the 2006 Women's National Team including: Laura Berg, Santa Fe Springs, Calif.; Crystl Bustos, Canyon Country, Calif.; Jennie Finch, La Mirada, Calif.; Tairia Mims Flowers, Tucson, Ariz.; Stacey Nuveman, La Verne, Calif.; Amanda Freed, Cypress, Calif.; Lovie Jung, Fountain Valley, Calif.; Jessica Mendoza, Camarillo, Calif.; Cat Osterman, Houston, Texas; Jenny Topping, Whittier, Calif.; and Natasha Watley, Irvine, Calif.
The 2006 roster also includes, Monica Abbott, Salinas, Calif.; Andrea Duran, Selma, Calif.; Vicky Galindo, Union City, Calif.; Alicia Hollowell, Suisun, Calif.; Caitlin Lowe, Tustin, Calif.; and Jamie Southern, Clovis, Calif.
Coaches for the 2006 USA Softball Women's National team will be Head Coach Mike Candrea (Casa Grande, Ariz.) from the University of Arizona, Assistant Coach Chuck D'Arcy (Sacramento, Calif.), Assistant Coach Karen Johns (Charlottesville, Va.) from the University of Virginia and Assistant Coach John Rittman, (Stanford, CA) from Stanford University.
In 2005, over 18,000 fans from over 30 different states attended the inaugural World Cup of Softball and saw a historical upset as Japan defeated the USA, the 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist, 3-1 in the finals. The talent level and excitement associated with the II World Cup of Softball presented by Kellogg's Frosted Flakes is usually only witnessed during an Olympic Games but in 2006 fans can once again be part of this spectacular event.
Tickets for the II World Cup of Softball presented by Kellogg's Frosted Flakes are on sale now and can be purchased via the web at www.softballoutlet.com or by phone by calling 1-800-654-8337. This year fans can purchase reserved seats to all of the games for only $50. All reserved seats are located in the upper and lower sections behind home plate. All-session general admission tickets are also available for $30.
Individual daily session tickets are only available for general admission seating at this time. All general admission tickets are $10 and can be purchased online or by phone. Based on availability, reserved single-session daily tickets will be available to the public one week prior to the start of the event.
'The importance of this year's World Cup can't be underestimated,' said two-time Olympic gold medalist Stacey Nuveman. 'Not only is it an opportunity for the world's best softball teams to play on U.S. soil, but it also is a huge step in preparing for the World Championships coming up in August and even further down the road at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.'
In August this same team will attempt to win an unprecedented sixth consecutive gold medal at the ISF Women's World Championship in Beijing, China, August 27-September 5.
The 2006 ISF Women's World Championship serves as the major qualifier for the 2008 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. The top five teams from the World Championship will qualify for Beijing and will be seeded in the order they finish. The USA has been the top seed in the past three Olympics and looks to secure its fourth top seed during the upcoming World Championship.
The USA's record of 54-1 in World Championship play dating back to 1986 includes five straight titles, an unchallenged record in the sport. A successful title defense by the USA would give it the number one world ranking for the 20th consecutive year.
USA Softball Women's National Teams have been among the most dominating of any sports team in history. The USA's ability to bring home the title in World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympics is unchallenged; with a total of 16 gold medals that includes five consecutive World Championships, five consecutive Pan Am Games and the past three Olympic gold medals.
The USA Softball Women's National Team won the first Olympic gold medal in the sport's history during the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Ga., and defended its gold medal at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney. Its gold medal performance in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, will be remembered as one of the most dominating performances in Olympic History.
The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The ASA has become one of the nation's largest sports organizations and now sanctions competition in every state through a network of 87 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 230,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than three million. For more information on the ASA, visit www.asasoftball.com.
About USA Softball
USA Softball is the brand created, operated and owned by the ASA that links the USA Men's, Women's, Junior Boys' and Junior Girls' National Team programs together. USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting these four National Teams to compete in international and domestic competitions. The USA Softball Women's National Team is one of the only two women's sports involved in the Olympic movement to capture three consecutive gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won seven World Championship titles including the last five consecutive. For more information about USA Softball, please visit www.usasoftball.com