Trnava, Slovakia – The Hellas Softball Women’s U22 National team completed play at the 7th ESF U22
Championships held from July 23-29 in Trnava, Slovakia, finished 9th out of 19 teams. Not the result the
federation was looking for but still a very positive experience as Hellas Softball continues working towards the
2019 Olympic Qualification tournament. Fielding the youngest team in the tournament with only 4 returners
from 2017 and 10 athletes making their international softball debut.

Hellas was grouped in the most difficult pool with Great Britain, Ireland, host Slovakia and Turkey. Hellas
opened the tournament with convincing wins over Turkey by a score of 11-0 and then defeating the host
Slovaks by a 13-6 score. This set up a second day showdown with top ranked Great Britain and ESF U19
finalists Ireland. Hellas was shut down by the Irish-American pitching duo in game 1 losing 4-1 in a hard fought
pitchers game. Defeated but not broken, Hellas regrouped to face top-ranked GB and fell behind early 6-0 in
the 5th inning. But the resilience of this young group saw team Hellas make a dramatic comeback scoring 6
runs late in the game but falling to GB by a 9-6 score. This loss coupled with the loss to Ireland relegated team
Hellas to the 9th-12th place playoff.

From here, the Hellas U22 team dominated as expected with wins over Israel 7-0, 17-2 over Switzerland, 6-0
over Ukraine and 12-2 over the host Slovakia team in front of a loud and involved home crowd.

Leading team Hellas were Eleni Spirakis who was the top hitter in the tournament hitting .593, followed
closely behind by 16 yr old Brianna Nykaza and veteran Samantha Lisikatos both batting .500. Also
contributing were new comers Nicolette Papavasiliou (.476) and Maria Zepeda (.480).

Leading the Hellas pitching staff was newcomer Brianna Nykaza who recorded 3 wins and 1 loss and had a
0.89 ERA.

Head coach Tony Foti was pleased with the event. “I am happy to see our young new talent get this
international experience. We must continue to grow as a program and need these competitions as part of our
preparation for next year’s qualifier.”

The Hellas Softball senior national team will debut in September at the inaugural WBSC Super 6 Showcase
being held in Hoofddorp, The Netherlands from September 18-23.