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March 10, 2010 > March Madness on the diamond

March Madness on the diamond

By Biff Jones
Photos By Don Jedlovec

Central Park in Fremont is set to host the 18th Annual March Madness softball tournament on Saturday and Sunday, March 13-14.

Ohlone College plays as the hosts of the 16-team tourney which is held on fields 3, 4, 5 and 6 of the Central Park grounds. Community colleges across Northern and Central California - including Chabot College of Hayward - will play three games on day one of the tournament and anywhere from one to three games on day two.

March Madness takes the 16 participating teams and separates them into four pools of four teams. In Pool A, Solano, Shasta, Fresno City and Hartnell will battle against each other; Pool B has host-school Ohlone, along with defending March Madness champion Siskiyous, Porterville and Monterey Peninsula; in Pool C, Feather River, College of San Mateo, Gavilan and Diablo Valley will battle; and Pool D will have Chabot, San Jose City, Taft and Modesto playing against each other.

Games on Saturday will be played on all four fields starting at 9 a.m. with games starting every two hours through 7 p.m. Ohlone plays its three day one games on Field 4 at 9 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m.; Chabot plays on Field 6 at 11 a.m., 3 and 7 p.m.

Sunday's games will be divided into two brackets: Gold (Championship) and Silver (Consolation). After Saturday's daylong round robin, the top two teams in each pool will advance to the single-elimination, Gold Bracket round on Sunday, March 14, while the bottom two teams from each pool will head to the single-elimination, Silver Bracket round.

The eight-run, five-inning mercy rule will be in effect throughout the tournament, with a 105-minute time limit. No inning starts after one hour and 45 minutes of play from the first pitch of each game. First tiebreaker in deciding pool-play standings is least number of runs against, with a coin toss being the second tiebreaker. Teams winning each pool will be the home team in the quarterfinals.

The quarterfinals of the Silver bracket play at 9 a.m.; quarterfinals of the Gold start at 11 a.m. At 1 p.m. the semifinals from each bracket will get underway. Finals for both brackets begin at 3 p.m.: Gold on Field 3; Silver on Field 4.

Admissions for these games are on a daily basis with adults being $6; minors (6-17) and seniors are $4; and kids, 5 and under, are free. High school students in their softball uniforms and other youth softball players in uniform are also free. There is no charge for parking.

Check the TCV Sports Web site - www.tricityvoice.com/sports - for results of all games throughout the entire tournament.

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