Shockwave

What is Shockwave?  Shockwave is Sunnyvale Girls Softball’s summer and fall All-Star/Tournament team programs. The Shockwave teams represent Sunnyvale Girls Softball in various tournaments including the ASA Northern California Championships, played at Twin Creeks in Sunnyvale for most age groups.  Sunnyvale Girls Softball fields Shockwave teams in the 8u, 10u and 12u divisions of tournament play.  Shockwave plays in the USA Softball (formerly ASA) “B” and “C” Divisions, which are specifically for All-Star teams of ASA-sanctioned rec leagues. 

Who is Eligible? To be eligible for Shockwave, you must participate in Sunnyvale Girls Softball’s  spring recreational season.   You must also NOT be a participant on an independent non-rec league tournament team after March 31st.  If you are on an independent team after March 31st, you are INELIGIBLE for Shockwave.  Independent teams are “A” Ball teams or other comp teams that are not affiliated with a rec league.   NOTE: If you have questions about eligibility, please email for more information at president@sunnyvalegirlssoftball.org

When is the Shockwave Season?  “B” teams can form anytime after January 1st.  The earliest “C” teams can form is the last Saturday in April.  Teams are formed based on a combination of factors, including, but not limited to, coach selections/recommendations and open evaluations for C teams.  Practices generally begin once the rec season has concluded in mid-May and the first tournaments are usually Memorial Day weekend and run through early to late July, depending on the age level.  Most teams will play between 5 and 7 tournaments, usually within a one hour drive, although many tournaments are local: San Jose, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Burlingame, Santa Cruz, etc.  Often times some of the older teams may have an “away” tournament, usually in San Diego or Tahoe.   

In the summers of 2016 and 2015, three different Shockwave teams qualified to play in the California State Games in San Diego, and in both years, multiple   teams have opted to end their seasons with a tournament in the Lake Tahoe area.  8u team(s) may initially only be scheduled to play in four tournaments, but may choose to add additional tournaments in July if players and parents are interested.  

See the Shockwave Trophy Shelf for a list of tournament wins and photos of Shockwave teams from previous years.

What is the time commitment for Shockwave?  This is one of the most important factors in deciding whether Shockwave is a good fit for your daughter.  

Tournaments will tie up most of the day on Saturday (usually 3 games) but your schedule for Sunday will often not be known until the night before and will be based on Saturday’s results so a player should be available all day Sunday as well.  Some local tournaments include a late Friday afternoon/early evening game as well.  

Practices are usually two to three days during the week; often there are two on-field practices and then a batting cage practice.  Practices generally last 1.5 to 2 hours, and would not start earlier than 4:30. Practice dates and times and are based on field availability and the coach’s preference and will not be known until May.  

Because players try out for Shockwave teams and not every player makes the team, it is expected that playing softball on the Shockwave team is a player’s highest-priority activity during the summer season. At the 10u and 12u level, girls who miss practices may get less playing time in games.  

8u teams will generally only have two midweek practices and/or batting cage practices. Playing time, while not completely equal, is expected to be balanced between all players who are consistently at practices and games.  

There is no expectation that a player is available for every single game and practice during the summer season.  Having conflicts will not eliminate a player from being considered for a Shockwave team, although a regular practice conflict or too many game conflicts may result in a player not being selected to a specific team, based on that team’s practice and game schedule.  

How many games do you play in a tournament?  Most tournaments have a “four game guarantee”, with three games in what is called Pool Play.  Pool Play is usually all day on Saturday or sometimes teams will have a Friday night game and then two games on Saturday, if the tournament is nearby.  After everyone has played three games, the teams are seeded for a single-elimination format on Sunday.  A team could play one game on Sunday or up to three or four depending on the format and whether or not the team continues to win.  

What are the costs?  The costs for 10u and 12u are usually in the $250-$400 range for the entire summer and vary based on the number of players on the team and how many tournaments the team plays in.  The costs include two uniforms that are the player’s to keep.  Players and parents have the option to order extra items like practice shirts, shorts, visors, pullovers, sweatshirts and equipment bags/backpacks at the start of the season.  Also, at some age levels, coaches are sometimes hired for a specific team.  In such instances, additional fees are charged to players on those teams to cover the hired coaches’ stipend and expenses.  

8u teams tend to be less expensive, usually $200-$350, as they often play in fewer tournaments and most years only purchase one uniform.  

How many teams are there in each age-division?  We try to field at least two teams at each age group.  Occasionally, if interest is high and there is enough pitching and coaching to make a third team feasible, we will field a third team in some divisions.  Due to USA Softball rules, which were revised since the summer 2016 season, all leagues are required to field a B team at 12u and 10u and then any subsequent teams will be C teams.  In general, B teams tend to be older, more experienced players.  8u does not currently have the B/C designations, so all 8u teams are classified as C teams.  

How many players on a team?  Rosters for 10u and 12u are generally between 11 and 14 players.  At these levels, there are only nine players on the field playing defense, and depending on the tournament, there may only be nine players who are in the batting line-up.  At 10u, many tournaments allow all players who are present to bat during Pool Play, but generally only nine bat during the single-elimination games on Sunday.  

8u teams tend to have larger rosters, with 12-16 players.  This is primarily due to the fact that for many this is their first competitive softball season, and many families may not be ready to commit three or four weekends in June to softball, so absences are planned into the roster size. Also, there are more playing opportunities at 8u, as 10 players are allowed on defense, and generally all players are allowed to bat.   

How are teams chosen?  Since Shockwave teams are All-Star teams, coaches from rec teams (not just the All-Star coaches), experienced coaches in other divisions and designated board members will begin to evaluate girls based on their performances throughout the regular season, will begin looking for skills needed to succeed during the summer season.  An example of this at the 8U and 10U divisions is a player’s ability to hit off player pitch, and not just coach pitch.  In 2017, 12u and 10u Select teams were formed during the spring rec season to begin to evaluate players against a higher level of competition, to evaluate players who are considered possible candidates for the summer B teams.  

Availability during the weekends when tournaments are scheduled is a factor in team selection.  A player who has limited availability during the summer might not be selected to a B or C team based on their availability, even though their skill set would suggest they would have been able to play on a team.  

All of this information will be used to determine the All-Star players. The weight given to each factor  can vary from division to division.

 

In Summary

This document was written to convey a general sense of what Shockwave is about.  It cannot cover all circumstances or answer all questions.  If you have any questions, please contact either SGSL Co-Presidents Dave Wurfer or Nathan Curtis at president@sunnyvalegirlssoftball.org or a member of the Shockwave Committee.  They can provide more information and examples of how things have worked in the past.  If your daughter is interested in being on a Shockwave team, but as a parent you feel there may be a conflict based on something you read above, please ask someone about your specific circumstance.  As an example, in the past, Shockwave teams have included players who couldn’t play in games on Sundays, or who had other conflicts, but in that situation, placing that player on a team worked.  

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