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March 8, 2011 > March Madness coming to Fremont's Central Park

March Madness coming to Fremont's Central Park

By Biff Jones

March Madness, in the form of women's community college softball, is scheduled for this weekend -- Saturday and Sunday, March 12 and 13 -- at Central Park, fields 3, 4, 5 and 6, in Fremont. Game times on Saturday are, 9 and 11 a.m., and 1, 3, 5 and 7 p.m.; Sunday game times are 9 and 11 a.m. and 1 and 3 p.m.

Admission is $5 for adults; $3 for seniors and kids. Children under 10, high school softball players with certificate and parking are free. Concessions and rest rooms will be available.

This is the 19th annual March Madness Tournament and is the brain child of Ohlone College head coach Donna Runyon. Junior College teams from all over northern and central California participate in this 16-team tournament. Saturday will be a pool format with four teams comprising one of four pools. All teams will play three games on Saturday and one to three games on Sunday. Games on Sunday will use a one-and-done format divided into two brackets -- Gold, or championship, and Silver, or consolation.

Group A consists of Fresno City, Monterey Peninsula, Redwoods (Eureka) and Solano (Fairfield); Group B will have host Ohlone, along with Cabrillo (Aptos), Porterville and Shasta; in Group C is Feather River (Quincy), Hartnell (Salinas), Merced and San Jose City; and in Group D, De Anza (Cupertino), Diablo Valley (Pleasant Hill), Gavilan (Gilroy) and Siskiyous (Weed) will battle it out.

Saturday, Ohlone plays Porterville at 9 a.m., Cabrillo at 1 p.m. and Shasta at 3 p.m. all on field 4. All games are seven innings with a 105-minute time limit on Saturday. However, any game tied after 105 minutes or seven innings will then use the International tie breaker where each team starts their half of an inning by putting a runner on second base. Game continues until a winner is declared.

Also, a game must go five innings with the losing team having a least five innings of batting regardless of the time. In addition, game ends when any team trails by eight runs or more after having batted in five innings. Tie breakers for Sunday pairings will be fewest runs scored against then a coin flip.

Sunday will have the top two teams in each pool playing in the Gold bracket with the bottom two in the Silver. First place teams will play second place in Gold; third place play fourth in Silver. Both brackets will have B vs. C and A vs. D in the first round. Silver teams play at 9 a.m. on Sunday and Gold at 11 a.m. Semifinals are at 1 p.m. and finals at 3 p.m. Over the two days, a total of 38 games are scheduled to be played -- 24 on Saturday; 14 on Sunday.

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