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Spring Rec 2017

 LGCS Girls Fastpitch Softball Rec Program

Spring 2017 Season Information


Click HERE to register for the Spring 2017 season

  

 

 

Welcome to the information page about the LGCS Girls Fastpitch Softball plans for our 2017 spring season. We look forward to a wonderful experience for our entire community of LGCS sponsors, volunteers, players, coaches, and families!  Thank you for your enthusiastic support.  It's going to be a terrific new year with lots of fun and excitement for the kids. Please review the following information, an overview provided for families with players in the league.  We want every player and family to have an excellent experience in our league and with the game of softball.  Should you have additional questions, please email the league help@lgcsfastpitch.org.  

 

INTRODUCTION

The Los Gatos - Cupertino - Saratoga Girls Softball program (LGCS) is a 100% volunteer-driven, non-profit, tax exempt organization promoting athletics, education and community throughfastpitch softball for girls in grades Pre-K through High School.  We offer ASA-sanctioned recreation league teams and competitive travel ball teams in the summer and fall.

The Recreation League Season

The LGCS recreation softball season runs from February to the middle of May.  Registered players in AA, AAA and AAAA Divisions can participate in league sponsored indoor skills clinics starting in early January. Teams are formed in late January and practices begin soon afterwards.  Players develop and gain experience, playing and participating in team practices, practice games, regular season games, and playoffs.

Our Facilities

The organization has 6 fields total for game play with 5 of the 6 fields located in the towns of Cupertino and Saratoga. Teams will be assigned games and practices at these locations with the goal of minimizing travel for all our families.  Sites include Monta Vista Park and Recreation Center in Cupertino, Foothill Elementary in Saratoga, and Blossom Hill Elementary in Los Gatos.  Additional practice facilities are also available in Cupertino.

Tournament Team Season(s)

Players that participate in our recreation league season are eligible to play on competitive summer and fall season travel ball teams.  Our 8U, 10U, and 12U travel ball program is called Magic.  Magic teams participate in ASA tournament play divisions defined as 8U, 10C, 10B, 12C, 12B. Our organization also offers spring, summer, and fall travel ball at 14C, 14B, 14A, 16B, 16A, and 18A levels as part of an exciting new program called Quakes Fastpitch.  Tournament travel teams play at a higher competitive level.  "A" label teams begin tournament play in the February/March timeframe while tournament play for "C" and "B" label teams typically begins in late May and runs through July with new teams selected for the fall season in mid August.  Teams qualifying for ASA Western Nationals and Nationals play through early August.  Fall season typically runs through the end of October or early November.  Interested players and parents should watch the league web site and look for email announcements about tournament travel ball teams registration.  Tryout and evaluation schedules will be posted on the Magic page on this website.  Our philosophy is to try and place every player interested in playing Magic on a team for summer and fall season play. Email the Magic coordinator for more information magic@lgcsfastpitch.org.

Alexis Briski Scholarship

Each spring the LGCS honors graduates from Los Gatos and Saratoga High Schools with the Alexis Briski Scholarship.  In June 2016 several talented seniors from our league received the scholarship. Check out the Alexis Briski Tournament home page to learn more about recent scholarship recipients and this annual event in the fall that brings almost 1,000 players together from greater Northern CA to play fastpitch softball.

Proceeds from our annual fall tournament fund the scholarship(s) and other high value programs that benefit our community.  For more information and to apply for the 2017 scholarship, contact us by email at magic@lgcsfastpitch.org.  

Items Included in Registration Fee

The following items are included with each player’s registration fee for the 2017 season.

  • League softball uniform set defned as a team jersey, socks, and visor
  • Preseason semi-private skills clinics taught by the professionals at Cutting Edge Softball for players in AA, AAA, and AAAA Divisions
  • Clinics offered include pitching, catching, hitting and defense skills (minor additional fee for pitching clinic participants)
  • Recreation league season games played from early March to the middle of May
  • Recognition award for each player at season's end
  • Individual and team photo package for each player
  • All necessary equipment except cleats and softball glove
  • Professionally trained league coaches

 

REGISTRATION DETAILS

Registration Process

To register your player(s) for our league, please use the online registration system.  Visit the Registration page and complete the registration process.  The page opens at the start of November. It makes registering faster, more accurate, and easier for everyone to use the online system.   

Information Needed to Complete Registration

The following items will be needed to help complete registration using the online system.

  • Name, address and telephone number of player's doctor
  • Medical insurance policy name and medical record number
  • Official birth certificate copy (mailed or emailed to the league registrar)
  • Emergency contact person name, phone number
  • Full contact information for parents/guardians

Returning players, please review and update the information we have on file when registering (especially medical info).

 

Late registration (after close date of standard registration) places a player on our wait list.  Wait list players are not guaranteed a spot on a team.

 

Registration Fees

The registration fee for "AA", "AAA", and "AAAA" division players is $245 for spring rec 2017. The registration fee for the "A" division player is $160 per player.

All "A" division and "AA" division players are eligible for the $35 early registration discount to encourage our youngest softball stars to participate and develop an affinity for the game. The deadline for the discount has been extended to December 20th. Please register your "A" and "AA" division players before December 20th, 2016 to receive the discount.  Players receiving the discount must be grade levels Pre-K, Kindergarten, or 1st grade for "A" division play OR 2nd grade, 3rd grade for "AA" division play.  Players in those grades wishing to play up will be subject to the higher fee if that division is not eligible for the discount.

There is also a one-time $50 total multiple sibling discount for a family that register 2 or more siblings.  The multiple sibling discount will appear at the checkout.  

A late registration fee of $50 will apply on or after January 20, 2017 to cover additional costs incurred for uniforms and equipment as well as the management of our waiting list.

Registration fees are non-refundable after January 28, 2017.

Volunteer Work Commitment

The league offers a $150 volunteer work “buyout” at registration.  Families that do not purchase a buyout have a mandatory obligation to perform work hours in our snack shack and at other league events including tournaments, field improvement days, and Softball Appreciation Day.  If you are not prepared to work, please purchase the buyout at registration.  To thank our team managers for volunteering, the league will waive the snack shack work requirement for 1 team manager per team. League officials will be sending out a volunteer signup list towards the beginning of the season. If you have not purchased the volunteer buyout, please signup for the requisite number of volunteer slots. If you do not fulfill your volunteer requirements, you will be required to pay for a volunteer buyout.

Financial Scholarships

The LGCS recognizes that there are children within our community who would like to play but cannot afford the fees. As a result, LGCS can provide scholarships for those who are in need financial assistance. You must satisfy the requirements of the program to be eligible for full or partial financial assistance. You can email info@lgcsfastpitch.org for more information.

 

PRESEASON LEAGUE SPONSORED PLAYER DEVELOPMENT CLINICS

Clinics Program

The LGCS is committed to the best possible experience for players.  To help each player improve and enjoy the game, we've established a preseason clinics program that offers additional expert instruction by professionals.  

The LGCS partners with Cutting Edge Softball (CES) to teach a wide variety of skills including fielding, throwing, pitching, hitting, catching, and new player skills development.  Clinics are also provided to coaches to improve their teaching methods, drills, coaching strategies, and game day preparation.  There is no additional cost for clinics as the expense is included in a player's league registration fee.  Space is limited so complete your league registration early and then immediately sign up for clinics. 

Clinics Registration

Interested players that want to participate in clinics must register for our Spring rec league season using our online player registration system.

Before completing the clinic registration please read the description and time commitment required for each clinic on the Clinics page.  Make sure your player is age level appropriate and agrees to attend all sessions of the clinic.  As space will be limited, any player missing a clinic is subject to being dropped and replaced. Reach our clinics coordinator via email clinics@lgcsfastpitch.org

Cutting Edge Softball

For more information about the full scope of CES services including camps, private lessons, small group lessons, and facility rental, please contact Cutting Edge Softball (www.cuttingedgesoftball.com).  CES has a dynamic staff of instructors and maintains a large indoor training facility.  

Cutting Edge Softball is located at 1844 Stone Avenue, San Jose, CA  95125.   

 

RECREATION LEAGUE DIVISIONS AND RULES

A player’s division is determined by the school grade in which she is currently enrolled.

A Division

For players enrolled in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and 1st Grade the A division is designed to teach girls the basic fundamentals of softball.  Scores are not kept and emphasis is placed on having fun.  All girls will bat with their own team pitcher (a coach or manager).  After 3 pitches the girls will then bat off a hitting tee.  All players will bat and play in the field each inning so that they learn the game and develop team spirit and good sportsmanship.  Teams are created based upon the player’s school as well as any friend/coach requests made on her registration form. 

AA Division

For players enrolled in 2nd and 3rd Grade the AA division introduces player pitching and specific softball skills and strategies. Games are scored but with a limit on runs in the first 3 innings.  Continuous batting is used and coach pitching takes place only when a player issues a walk.  This assure consistent pace of play.  Teams are created based upon the player’s school as well as any friend/coach requests made on her registration form. 

AAA Division

For players enrolled in 4th and 5th Grade the AAA division introduces players to regulation softball play and rules.  There is a combination of player and coach pitching, stealing bases is allowed (one at a time), but the dropped third strike and infield fly are not used.  Teams are created based upon competitive balance with consideration given to the player’s school.

AAAA Division

For players enrolled in 6th, 7th, and 8th Grade (middle school grades with some high school age players too) the AAAA division generally follows ASA championship rules and guidelines.  However, all the girls will continue to bat in continuous order and there will be an open defensive substitution policy to maximize play and experience.  Teams are created through a draft system for competitive balance.

Recreation Season Rules by Division

Please see the Rules page for details.

 

RECREATION LEAGUE PRACTICE/GAME INFORMATION

Practice and Game Locations

The following chart gives general information about the time commitment and scheduling for each division including practices and games.  Managers make the final decision on their team’s practice schedule.  

Division

Events Per Week

Practice Days

Practice Length

Games Per Week

Game Length

Game Days

A

2

1

1 Hour

1

60 min +

Sat

15 min warm-up

AA

3-4

1-2

1-2 Hours

2

90 min +

Sat +

30 min warm-up

Weekday

AAA

3-4

1-2

1-2 Hours

2

90-120 min +

Sat +

30-45 min warm-up

Weekday

 

3-4

1-2

1-2 Hours

2

 90-120 min +

Sat +

30-45 min warm-up

Weekday

Game Times

Weeknight games start at 5:00pm until Daylight Savings when that changes to 5:30pm.  Weekend games start between 9:00am and 7:00pm

Game Locations

Recreation league home games are played primarily at Foothill Elementary in Saratoga,Monta Vista Park in Cupertino, and Blossom Hill Elementary in Los Gatos.  Some games are scheduled against other local leagues (interleague play) and will be played nearby. Check the Locations page for more details. Game schedules will posted and shall include the location information.

Practice Times/Locations

The practice times and locations will be decided by each manager and communicated to each family on that team.  The league assigns fields for team practices at Foothill Elementary and Blossom Hill Elementary. 

 

RECREATION SEASON SPECIAL EVENTS

Photo Day

Early in the season on a Sunday to be determined each team and all the individual players will have their pictures taken.  Families receive an individual and team photo as part of the player's registration fee.  Families can purchase additional photos and photo-based items including buttons, key chains, etc. Forms will be available at photo day, and each family should complete a form for their player.  Volunteer coaches with our league have a special bonus, a buddy photo that is taken with their player and provided compliments of the league.  Photos will be delivered to each team prior to the end of the season.

LGCS Night at Stanford University Womens Softball

A great evening of high caliber Division-1 softball, giving our players the opportunity to meet collegiate athletes and learn more about the game while being inspired to practice and develop their skills.

Softball Appreciation Day

The most exciting event on the LGCS calendar each year is Softball Appreciation Day.  A day in April will be designed Softball Appreciation Day, and on that Saturday all our players, coaches, and families will come together for a huge party including dunk tank, yearbook distribution, games, activities, and a terrific raffle with major prizes.  The day includes a full schedule of softball games to go along with the other fun and surprises.  The event takes place at Foothill Elementary.  The barbecue is fired up so plan on lunch at the field and spending all day with us to celebrate softball and our kids.

LGCS Night at San Jose Giants 

Terrific family event with all LGCS softball parents and players invited to participate watching our local professional baseball team, the A affiliation of the San Francisco Giants.

No Limit Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament

Families and friends of the LGCS are invited to join us for a big night of spirited poker action.  Last year nearly 50 players participated to raise money for our organization.  Food, drink, and lots of laughs are the focus with some interesting poker strategy being demonstrated as well.  The schedule for this year's event will be posted soon.  Contact us at info@lgcsfastpitch.org to receive more information and reserve your spot in the tournament.

 

TEAM FORMATION AND PARTICIPANT EXPECTATIONS

Attendance Expectations

Softball is a team sport, so regular attendance is important in all divisions.

Consistent attendance is especially needed in the AAA and AAAA divisions as teams are no longer school based.  Participation is essential to maintain the competitive balance that theLGCS works to achieve each season.  We ask everyone to be very mindful of the playing days and time commitments for their division before signing up, to avoid scheduling conflicts.   It is not fair to the other players when players regularly miss events, arrive late, or leave early. 

Playing Up or Down a Division

The LGCS has a policy to allow play up or play down requests only in very unique circumstances when the player population requires a small number of additions or subtractions to balance team roster sizes.  If you would like the league to consider a play up or play down request, please note that on your registration form. 

Team Formation

As the focus of LGCS recreation season play is purely for enjoyment and skill development, everyone plays and there are no tryouts. Teams are formed in early February, a few weeks after registration has closed.   There are, however, player evaluations for the AAA and AAAAdivisions to determine skill levels and aid in the formation of balanced teams via a draft.

LGCS division commissioners with input as needed from the rec commissioner make the final determination on team formation issues and placement of players.  Managers and coaches are not able to make any changes but have a draft format in the AAA and AAAA divisions.  Your manager will communicate the team’s roster to all families in the week following our annual orientation meeting of the Coaches and Managers in early February.  Manager notifications will include the team's practice schedule information.

Friends Requests Policy

For players registered in the A and AA divisions the LGCS supports and encourages players to submit requests at the time of registration for particular friends with whom you wish to play.  This might include playing with siblings as well.  While fulfillment of requests is not guaranteed the A and AA division commissioners will do their best to support each request.  It’s important for the kids to play with friends and inspire the best in each other as they get comfortable and learn more about the game of softball.

Parent Participation

The LGCS is a 100% volunteer based organization, and all parents are required to volunteer their time in some capacity including in the snack shack, at tournaments, or during Softball Appreciation Day.  If families would prefer not to volunteer their time, each family can choose to purchase a “buyout” from this obligation.  A $100 buyout can be purchased at registration. 

It’s our experience that your daughter will appreciate and benefit enormously from parental involvement, and we highly encourage you to attend your daughter’s games and related softball team activities.  In addition, most Coaches and Managers appreciate any extra help they can get so please volunteer to help at practices, games or in team support positions. Don’t worry if you “know nothing about softball”- every parent has something to offer.  

EQUIPMENT

Softball Equipment Needs

The LGCS provides a full uniform for each player including visor, jersey, and socks.  The league also provides almost all necessary equipment for game play including fields, bases, batting helmets, bats, balls, and catcher’s gear.

Players are responsible for a softball glove and cleats (either softball or soccer cleats as long as they are plastic or rubber on the bottom).  It is also recommended that players in the AAA and AAAA division wear sliding shorts and/or knee pads along with their softball pants.

If families choose to purchase additional softball equipment for their player(s), please read the following notes and be certain that equipment meets the following ASA rules/standards:

1. Helmets must have a face mask, be NOCSAE-approved and we suggest an adjustable rather than “one size fits all” model. 

2. Bats must be fastpitch models, marked "ASA Softball approved" with a 2004 date or newer.  Check with a coach first if you are uncomfortable making a selection (correct bat size is critical). 

3. Gloves should be size and weight appropriate for each level with special attention given to the younger players new to the game.

4. Defensive fielders mask is recommended and encouraged by LGCS Girls Softball but not mandatory by ASA rules.

 

Play Ball!