If it’s November, it must be time for coconut prawns, Dole Whip and some high quality Hawaiian softball.
Fastpitch Northwest will hold a pair of Prospect Evaluation Camps in Hawaii this month – Nov. 19 on Maui (Maui High School) and Nov. on Oahu (Nanakuli High School). Players who perform well will receive an invitation to next July’s Fastpitch Northwest College Exposure Tournament to take place in Centralia Wa.
Fastpitch Northwest director Ken Olson will be joined by Tom and Cat Mauldin in conducting the PECs and evaluating the talent.
“I am really looking forward to getting back to see the Hawaiian kids compete,” said Olson. “The coaches over there spend so much time on fundamentals and it shows when they get over her in front of our NW coaches.”
The PECs will feature five hours of on-field testing and evaluation.
At the PECs, players will be tested using the SPARQ and the NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) comparatives and evaluated by the Fastpitch Northwest staff.
The SPARQ rating system and the NFCA Comp guide are merely measuring guides. The system is designed to measure sport-specific athleticism. The results from these tests are combined and weighted using a formula specific to softball. Nike Sports developed the rating system for several sports, including softball.
SPARQ represents Speed, Power, Agility, Reaction and Quickness. It’s an acronym that excites coaches ... especially when they see attention-grabbing performances.
The NFCA comparatives include Bat Exit Speed (the speed of the ball coming off the bat), baserunning and throwing.
“Ultimately, these guidelines can be motivational,” said Mauldin. “We can always improve, so why wouldn’t we. Coaches love players who work to improve.”
Olson and the Mauldins have close to a combined 90 years of experience and have coached at the collegiate and high school levels.
“The camps are filling up with some great talent,” said Olson. “Getting out of the rain won’t be a bad thing either.”
The forecast for Hawaii calls for highs in the mid-80s, lows in the low 70s and occasion clouding with many sun breaks.
Olson said he wasn’t expecting a record-breaking turnout as was the case last year when 75 Hawaiians attending PECs and more than half attended the July tournament. However, 50 plus players are expected.
Each year, Hawaiian players grab attention. To name only a few, Laugatausala Pedebone, Cassie Ho, Kykala Tokunaga, Taylor Oda, Kaylee Harmon, Stacia Mahoe, Brinel Kaleikini, Chardonnay Pantastico and Cristine Hipa.
Ho and Oda were impressive behind the plate and in the batter’s box, Harmon and Pedebone were slick fielding middle infielders who could hit, Keleikiini and Pantastico showed versatility, Tokunaga was solid both in the circle and hitting, Mahoe got notice as a 4-11 power hitter and Hipa pitched and batted her way into the spotlight.
All are playing or have played collegiately and Tokunaga was a MaxPreps Small School All-American in 2016.
Last year was no exception with Beyli Correa, Meleana Turner,
Darian Obara,, Kaitlin Carlos and Taylor Panlasigui performing well at the tournament and made college coaches take a close look. That quintet is to name only a few as there were many others who grabbed spotlights, too.
Though the Hawaiian PECs are held in November (2016), player marks are recorded against 2017 PECs held in other states.
Several Hawaiians recorded top PEC marks for 2016. They included:
Kaitlin Hodgins (Lahaina, Hi.), 25.7 in the vertical jump.
Kyana Nagasako (Maui, Hi.), 4.58 in the shuttle.
Tanisha Valdez (King Kekaulike, Hi.), 64 mph overhand throw.
Mahealani Perkins (Mid-Pacific, Hi.), 24.4 in vertical jump.
Aliya Harmon (Baldwin, HS), had an overhand throw of 62 mph and a fastball of 58 mph.
Sunny Halsey (Oahu, Hi) tied with Redmond (Ore.) Hailey Heising for the top pitching speed at 55 mph.
Alohilani Napalapalai recorded a 60 mph outfield throw and a 71 mph Bat Exit recording.
Hopefully, many of those girls will be back to better their marks and grab more attention from college coaches.
And if this year’s group of Hawaiian participants need a little motivation, here are last year’s top PEC marks for Oahu and Maui.
Top marks from last year’s OAHU Prospect Evaluation Camp:
Exit Speed: 72 by Kaitlin Carlos, (2019), Lia Nikamoto (2017) and Kaena Nistal (2018); 71 was recorded for Maia McNichol (2018), and Alohilani Napalapalai (2021).
Pop to Pop = 1.81 by Lia Nikamoto (2017); 1.85 by Moana Hillen (2017), Terra Dumalo (2020) and Kaila Burnett (2017).
Vertical Jump (electronically recored) = Mahealini Perkins (2020) 24.4; Moana Hillen (2017) 23.5, Kaylee Roberts (2018) 23.0
Shuttle (10 yard) = Kaylee Roberts (2018) 4.59; Hailey Yoshioka (2017) 4.63; Moana Hillen (2017) 4.78.
20 Yard Sprint (electronically recorded) = Darian Obarra (2017) 2.93; Eri Mizuguchi (2020) 2.95, Maia McNichol (2018) 2.97.
Power Ball = Lia Nikamoto (2017) 39; Dayeze Wong (2020) 35.
H-1B = Kawena Hussey (2020) 2.76 and Eri Mizuguchi (2020).
H-H = Ciera Farias (2017) 11.81; Eri Mizuguchi (2020) 11.95; Moana Hillen (2017) 11.98.
Infield Throw = Maia McNichol (2018) 61; Markie Okamota (2017) and Lia Nikamoto (2017) 60.
Outfield Throw = Taylor Schmerbauch (2017) 61 mph; Alohilani Napalapalai (2021) 60.
Fastball = Kaena Nistal (2018) 59; Maia McNichol (2018), 57.
Fastest Screwball = Kaena Nistal 60; Maia McNichol 57.
Fastest Rise = Kaena Nistal 59; Maia McNichol 58.
Fastest Drop = Maia McNichol 56, Mealana Turner (2019) 56.
Fastest Curve = Kaena Nistal 60; Maia McNichol 58; Mealana Turner 56.
Top marks from last year’s MAUI Prospect Evaluation Camp:
Exit Speed: Sadie Sakomota (2018) 76 mph; Tanisha Valdez (2019) 71.
Pop to Pop = Cami Horner (2019) and Nichole Nakanishi (2018) 1.84.
Vertical Jump = Kaitlin Hodgins (2018) 25.6; Felicity Pastrana(2020) 22.8; Jade Villa (2019) 22.5.
10-Yard Shuttle = Erin Prieto (2019) 4.54; Tanisha Valdez (2019) 4.54; Samantha Martinez (2020) 4.56.
20-Yard Spring = Nihili Hong (2019), 2.89; Lili Vehikite (2018) 2.92; Giovanna Johnson (2017) 2.93.
Power Ball = Kaycee Arase (2018) 40; Nohili Hong (2019) 39; Felicity Pastrana (2020) and Kayla Tuaoa (2020 37.
H-1B = Aliya Harmon (2020) 2.78; Taylor Asio (2017) 2.90; Sheila Tateyama (2018) 2.91.
H-H = Taylor Asio (2017) 11.44;Aliya Harmon (2020) 11.91.
Infield Throw = Tanisha Valdez (2019) 64 mph; Lauren Almedia (2021) 63.
Outfield Throw = Tanisha Valdez (2019) 63; Aliya Harmon (2020) 62; Taylor Asio (2017)and Nohili Hong (2019) 61.
Fastball = Aliya Harmon (2020) 58 mph , Keiley Higaki-Belaski (2017) 53.
Fastest Screwball = Aliya Harmon (2020) 55.
Fastest Curve = Aliya Harmon (2020) 56, Keiley Higaki-Belaski (2017) 52.
Fastest Rise = Aliya Harmon (2020) 55, Keiley Higaki-Belaski (2017) 52.
Fastest Drop = Aliya Harmon (2020) 55.