Monday, September 29, 2014

It's Official...Kim Griffin New Canisius Head Coach

Kim Griffin became the second Head Coach in Golden Griffin softball history today, announced Canisius Athletic Director Bill Maher:

“The appointment of Kim Griffin was part of our succession plan and her work with the team has demonstrated that she is the right person to lead our softball program,” Maher said. “Kim worked under Mike Rappl here for seven years as an assistant, and she understands and appreciates the tradition of Canisius softball. She has proven in her time as both an assistant coach and as the program’s interim coach that she is ready to take the next step in her professional career.”

 Kim Griffin released the following statement:

“I am honored and excited to have the chance to take over the Canisius softball program, a program that has produced 800-plus wins, numerous MAAC championships, 11 NCAA Tournament appearances and countless success stories both on and off the field,” Griffin said. “Being able to work with and learn from Mike Rappl for the past seven years has been an invaluable experience. His daily work ethic, knowledge of game and his ability to manage a successful team year in and year out has taught me what it takes to be a Golden Griffin and a champion. I am thankful and appreciative of the support I have received from our entire athletic department, which includes Director of Athletic Bill Maher, Senior Woman’s Administrator Traci Murphy, all of the other head coaches and our support staff. They have all been extremely helpful to me in making this professional transition enjoyable and exciting.”

 Coach Griffin, who had served as an assistant under Mike Rappl, the winningest coach in the MAAC in any sport, since September of 2007, has led the Griffs to a perfect 8-0 record thus far in this fall season. Certainly she has big shoes to fill, but I'm sure she's learned a lot working with Coach Rappl.

Read more here

Monday, September 8, 2014

Canisius Opens Fall Ball With Sweep

Freshman pitcher Erika Mackie began her Canisius career with a shutout
The Canisius Golden Griffins got the new softball season underway with a pair of fall ball wins over Canadian school Humber College this past Saturday. Of course, it was a big day for the Griff freshmen, and they all had positive debuts. Canisius has two new pitchers this season, and they both tossed shutouts to begin their careers. Madi Weathers won the first game with an eight strikeout performance (in a five inning game), allowing only one hit which was a bunt single. Erika Mackie won game two, another five inning game in which she struck out out five batters while allowing only three hits. Infielder Moriah Harris got off to a powerful start, hitting a home run and triple in game one; good for four RBIs. Veteran Michelle DelPrince hit a pair of triples herself. Jessica Berzins also tripled for the Golden Griffins.

This was the first ever Canisius game, fall or spring, with a coach other than Mike Rappl in charge, as interim head coach Kim Griffin made her debut.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Casey Page Commits To Marist

Casey Page of Marietta, Georgia has verbally committed to play softball at Marist College beginning in the 2016 season.

Another great verbal for Marist coming out of the state of Georgia; this time it's speedy outfielder Casey Page. Casey will begin her senior year at North Cobb high school in Kennesaw, GA next month; she currently has a career .541 batting average for the Lady Warriors. Casey has shown the ability to get on base frequently, and around the bases to score, with 73 runs her last two seasons. She's also a very accomplished base stealer, with 49 thefts in 52 attempts in her last two seasons. In the outfield, she uses her speed to get to fly balls; she committed no errors during her junior season. Casey plays travel ball with the Georgia Fire.

Congratulations Casey!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Kim Griffin Named Canisius Interim Head Coach



With the stunning retirement of Canisius and Western New York softball icon Mike Rappl yesterday, the Golden Griffins have named his assistant Kim Griffin as interim head coach. Canisius Director of Athletics Bill Maher stated that he will announce a "permanent successor" in the near future. It was not clear if he would be looking outside the current coaching staff for that successor.

Kim Griffin, a graduate of and former softball player at division 2 Mercyhurst University, joined the Canisius coaching staff in the fall of 2007, helping the team win MAAC titles her first two seasons. She has had many duties with the Golden Griffins, including as pitching coach and first base coach during games. She has also been more involved in recruiting in recent seasons. Coach Griffin is a Western New York native, who played softball at Cleveland Hill high school.

Monday, July 28, 2014

CANISIUS COACH MIKE RAPPL RETIRES


Mike Rappl, who built the Canisius softball program from scratch, has announced his retirement from coaching today.

The seven time MAAC Coach of the Year ends his storied career with a record of 831-526, which includes 12 MAAC Championships.

More from the Canisius website here

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Kallen Leeseberg Commits To Marist


Kallen Leeseberg of Augusta, Georgia has verbally committed to play softball at Marist College beginning in the 2016 season.

One great pitcher from the state of Georgia worked out well for Coach Ausanio at Marist, so he went out and got another one! Kallen Leeseberg is a six foot tall right handed pitcher who just completed her junior season at Aquinas high school in Augusta. She's a high strikeout pitcher, fanning 1.8 batters per inning thus far in her career. She posted a 1.92 ERA last season, won 29 games over the last two years, and is considered one of the top pitchers in Georgia. She is also an accomplished hitter, with a career average of .533, and a career slugging percentage of .970. She also can run, stealing 19 bases out of 21 attempts. She's very athletic and plays basketball for Aquinas as well. Kallen currently plays travel ball with the Georgia Fire.

Congratulations Kallen!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

MAAC Recruit Update: Madi Weathers, Canisius Golden Griffins

Pitcher Madi Weathers just completed her senior season at Fountain Valley high school in southern California. Madi rebounded from an injury plagued junior season, in which she missed about a month of action, to post a 2.05 ERA, earning her All-Sunset League status. A great control pitcher, she averaged over a strikeout per inning while averaging only two walks per game.

Madi is playing travel ball with the California Cruisers this summer, and will join Canisius in the fall.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Jackie Riley Commits To St. Peter's

Jacqueline Riley of South Amboy, New Jersey has verbally committed to play softball at St. Peter's University beginning in the 2016 season.

Jackie Riley is a pitcher who just completed her junior season at Cardinal McCarrick high school in New Jersey. Jackie is a very hard thrower, averaging around two strikeouts per inning. She holds the school record for strikeouts per game, with 21 in a seven inning game this past season. Jackie isn't just a fast ball thrower; she has a full arsenal of pitches and displays great control, walking only 15 batters in 111 innings during her junior season. Her career ERA is currently 1.34, and has improved with each season. Jackie is also accomplished in the batter's box, she has hit over .400 for her career, and can hit for power and extra bases. She plays travel ball for the Central Jersey Lightning Gold.

Congratulations Jackie!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

MAAC Recruit Update: Angelina McGuire, Fairfield Stags

Angelina McGuire recently completed her softball career at Immaculate Heart Academy in Washington Township, New Jersey, leading her team to the North New Jersey state final. Angelina, an outfielder, already had impressive career statistics, but saw her offensive numbers skyrocket during her senior season making her one of the top hitters in New Jersey. She hit .485 with nine home runs. Most impressive was her 63 RBIs, averaging almost two per game. She finished with a slugging percentage of .950, and scored 41 runs. She is also excellent in the field, committing only two errors in her last three seasons. For this she was named to the All-New Jersey first team, and the NFCA's All-East Region first team.

Angelina plays travel ball with the New Jersey Heist, and will join Fairfield in the fall.

MAAC Recruit Update: Toni Nino, Rider Broncs

Toni Nino recently completed a very successful season at Silverado high school in Victorville, California, helping lead the Hawks to the Desert Sky League championship, and a berth in the CIF Southern Section playoffs where the team made it to the quarterfinals. Toni was named to the Desert Sky first team after hitting .515 and leading the team with 52 runs scored. The speedy outfielder/infielder also led the Hawks in stolen bases, stealing a perfect 47 bases in 47 attempts, this in just 27 games.

Toni is projected by coach Carroll to play in the outfield at Rider, and probably will eventually be the Broncs' leadoff hitter. Toni will play travel ball with the SoCal Wicked before joining Rider in the fall.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

MAAC Recruit Update: Erika Mackie, Canisius Golden Griffins

Erika Mackie recently ended her high school career with a heartbreaking extra innings loss in the Pennsylvania State tournament, but her 2014 season led the Holy Cross Crusaders of Scranton, PA to their most successful season in school history. With Erika a dominant force in the circle, the Crusaders won their first ever district title, and made their first ever appearance in States. Erika continued her annual statistical rise this year with a brilliant season, finishing with a 17-2 record. She had a miniscule ERA of 0.80, while striking out 150 batters. She rarely walks a batter, and tossed 10 one-hitters this season.

Erika will play travel ball with the TC Tremors this summer before joining the Golden Griffins in the fall.

Photo: Scranton Times-Tribune


Sunday, June 15, 2014

MAAC Recruit Update: Jessica Harkness, Iona Gaels

Iona Gaels' recruit Jessica Harkness just completed a difficult senior season at Foran high school in Milford, Connecticut. What made it difficult for Jess was a couple of injuries that plagued her throughout the season. She missed ten games, and then tried to battle through for the remainder of the year, leading her team into the second round of the State tournament. Very often she did not have her full arsenal of pitches working for her, but was brilliant in the opening round of States, tossing a no-hitter while striking out 18 batters. For the season, she struck out 119 batters in 70 innings pitched. She was never at full strength, but toughed it out for her team which showed her great dedication apart from her great skills.

Jess will play travel ball this summer for the Connecticut Charmers Gold before joining the Iona Gaels in the fall.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

MAAC ECAC All-Stars

The Eastern College Athletic Conference has released it's annual softball all-star team. The following MAAC players were honored:

First Team

Kristen Filicia, Fairfield Stags
Eileen McCann, Iona Gaels

Second Team

Kristen Turner, Iona Gaels
Taylor Kuzma, Marist Red Foxes

Full list here



Saturday, May 31, 2014

MAAC Changes Tournament Format

The MAAC Council of Presidents announced Thursday that beginning next season, the MAAC softball championship will be held on the campus (or at the field the softball team uses regularly) of the regular season champion. Previously, the tournament was always held at a predetermined location. If the new format had been in place this past season, Marist would have hosted the tournament. The number one seed will, however, have the option of opting out of hosting if there is a facility conflict.

The Council of Presidents also confirmed that the softball tournament will continue to field six teams, terming it a success that resulted in "greater fan interest".

Monday, May 19, 2014

Carly Argyle's Dramatic Home Run

Carly Argyle's 7th inning home run vs. Fairfield at the 2014 MAACs which led to an Iona comeback win on their way to the championship.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

MAAC Recruit Update: Paige Hess, Siena Saints


This is the first of a series of articles highlighting the players who will begin their MAAC softball careers next season.

When infielder Paige Hess signed with the Siena Saints last November, she boasted a career batting average of .483 at Camp Verde High School in Gilbert, Arizona. She just completed her senior season at Camp Verde, resulting in an improvement of her already gaudy career average! Paige had a terrific senior season, which resulted in her being named to her All-Section team, batting .495. That pretty much maintained her yearly average, but she showed a marked improvement in her power numbers, hitting 10 home runs while driving home 43 in 29 games played. She produced an excellent slugging percentage of .949, and reached base over 50 percent of the time. She also hit 15 doubles. Paige had her best season in the field, with a .955 fielding percentage, helping to turn six double plays.

Paige Hess this fall will be joining a Siena team that had a record number of wins this past season, is graduating only one player (albeit a great one in Jessika-Jo Sandrini), and has an outstanding group of young recruits coming aboard. In the meantime, Paige will play travel ball this summer with the Arizona Hotshots.
Photo courtesy of: AzDew Photography - Dennis Webb

Friday, May 16, 2014

MAAC Season Ends With Gaels' Loss

Eileen McCann ended her career with a big bang
Northwestern 14
Iona 4 (6)


The Iona Gaels season ended tonight when they lost 14-4 to Northwestern at the Seattle Regional. With the loss, the 2014 MAAC season also came to an end.

Believe it or not, the final score was not indicative of how close this game had been. In fact, it seemed for awhile that Iona was going to win it. The Gaels jumped to the early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when after Ashlyn Morris doubled, senior Eileen McCann ripped a pitch over the fence for a home run. The homer allowed her to tie the Iona record for career RBIs. She hit 3 for 3 in her final game, and made many nice plays in right field. Northwestern did come back to take a 4-2 lead, but a two out bases loaded single by senior Katie Jansson in the bottom of the third inning tied the game for the Gaels, who were hitting the ball hard, whether safely or not. But things fell apart for Iona with two outs in the top of the fourth, as Northeastern put up four runs. They would add another six runs in the top of the sixth inning to end the game early.

Iona finishes their season 24-24, and bids farewell to seniors Eileen McCann and Katie Jansson. And so another MAAC season comes to an end; it was one filled with weather problems and cancellations, but also one with a very entertaining conference tournament.

Iona Drops First Game To #12 Washington

Sarah Schutz had the Gaels' only hit
#12 Washington 8
Iona 0 (6)


The MAAC champion Iona Gaels lost their first game of the Seattle Regional to the host #12 Washington late Thursday night 8-0.

The first inning of this game saw Iona fall behind 5-0 to the Huskies. With two Washington runners on base, Iona pitcher Carly Argyle induced a simple fly ball out, but saw that taken away when the home plate umpire called an illegal pitch, the first such call to go against her all season. Carly walked that batter, and then the next which put Iona behind 1-0. Then Washington's Ali Aguilar drove a pitch over the fence, and the Gaels found themselves in a 5-0 hole. Iona would get only one base runner the whole game, that coming in the top of the second inning thanks to Sarah Schutz's infield single. Washington starter Kaitlin Inglesby shut the Gaels down the rest of the way, walking no one.

Iona will play Northwestern Friday at 6:30 pm EDT. The winner of that game will advance to another elimination game immediately following; the loser will see their season end.