Vienna Stars Cherry Blossom

Coaches’ Guide


Check in


All teams must check in with the Tournament Director at the site of their first game, at least one hour prior to game time.   Please provide the following:

  1. Official Pony roster – must be accurate, signed, and complete (no DRAFT rosters accepted).
  2. Copies of all players birth certificates (highlight the names and birth dates)
  3. A copy of the team’s insurance policy


Tournament Team Managers


Managers or designee must carry with them proper birth certificates or other legal certification of birth, or legible photo static copies of same, documentary evidence of accident insurance, preferably in the form of a certificate of insurance.


Official PONY Fast Pitch rules apply except as noted


PONY Patches


Pony no longer requires patches for tournament teams.


Ground Rules for 10U


  1. The black top next to Vienna Elementary School is out of play. Any balls going onto the black top will be subject to normal out of play rules.


  1. Any ball that hits of goes past the path in front of the Community Center, or hits the Community Center itself, will be a ground rule double if it contacts on a bounce, and be a home run if it contacts in the air.


Important Information for all age brackets


  • All pool games will have a 1 hour and 20 minute “no new inning” time limit. A new inning starts immediately upon the recording of the third out in the bottom of the previous inning. Pool play games that end in a tie after 7 innings – 6 innings for 10U – or the time limit being reached, will be recorded as such – no ITB for pool play games.


  • Forfeit time is the scheduled game time unless teams are moving from another field location and playing in the immediate time slot before the scheduled game. Note: all teams must be ready to play 30 minutes prior to the scheduled game time, or 1 hour prior if bad weather is forecast. However, forfeiture may be avoided, at the Field Director’s discretion, if unique circumstances warrant otherwise. This will be discussed by the Field Director with the Umpire for the game. All forfeits will be recorded as 7-0 losses.


  • All single elimination bracket games (with the exception of the Championship game) will have a 1 hour and 30 minute “no new inning” time limit. If a game is tied after 7 innings – 6 innings for 10U – or the time has expired, each additional inning will be played using the International Tie Breaker. The last completed “at bat” from the previous inning will be the runner placed at 2nd base to start the inning. A winner must be determined in single elimination bracket play. No time limit is imposed on the Championship Game.


  • STALLING – Umpires reserve the right to determine if a team is stalling, and will do everything possible to keep the games running on schedule, up to forfeiting of the game for the offending team. One (1) warning will be issued prior to the decision of forfeiture should a team be deemed as stalling.


  • All games will be subject to the Run Ahead Rule. Twelve (12) runs after 3 innings, ten (10) runs after 4 innings and eight (8) runs after 5 innings. Losing team must bat in the inning in which the rule is invoked.


  • Home team for all pool games will be determined by a coin flip prior to the start of each game. Higher seed for elimination games will have choice of home or visitor.


  • A courtesy runner is allowed for the catcher and pitcher at any time. The courtesy runner must be a player who is in the official line-up, but has not played in the game in any other capacity than perhaps previously having been a courtesy runner. This rule is just listed here as a courtesy, as we are following the exact rule as stated in the PONY rule book.


  • Each team will get one minute between innings, and warm up balls are allowed in the infield and outfield.


  • No throwing the ball around the infield or outfield after an out is recorded.


  • All jewelry must be removed except for medical alert bracelets. Medical alert jewelry must be securely taped to the player.


  • If an illegal player participates at any time during the event, the player and her manager will be ejected for the remainder of the tournament and all games in which that player participated will be forfeited. Participation is defined as either actively playing in the game or appearing anywhere on the official lineup that’s presented prior to the start of a game. Examples of illegal players include, but are not limited to, players on two teams in the same event, not being listed on the team roster that was presented prior to the tournament, violating the age requirement, playing under an assumed identity, use of a fraudulent birth certificate, not presenting a birth certificate when requested to do so by a Tournament Director or Field Director.


  • The WINNER of each game must report the score immediately after the game to the Tournament Director or Field Director. Please take the time to report the actual score, do not guess at it.


  • Remember that PONY allows a DP/Flex Player, or up to two EPs, but not both. So a team may play DP/Flex without any EPs. Or one EP with no DP/Flex, or two EPs with no DP/Flex. Or, of course, no DP/Flex or any EPs.


  • No protests are allowed on an umpire’s judgment call. All protests on rule interpretations will be settled by the umpires and the Tournament Director or Field Director. A $150.00 cash fee is required immediately upon request for the protest. The fee will be returned only if the protest ruling goes in your favor.


  • The stoppage of play due to weather is the decision of the umpires and the Tournament Director or Field Director. The Tournament or Field Director will make adjustments to the schedule to get the tournament played if weather dictates so.


  • Each team is responsible for inspection of their equipment for safety. An umpire, at any time, may request to look at the equipment, should there be a concern. Please keep the girl’s safety in mind at all times.


  • It is the Manager or designee’s responsibility to find out if, when, and where their team is playing. Information will be posted with Field Directors or obtained by calling the respective tournament director for that particular age group.


  • If there are any discrepancies with dimensions of the field of play or rules of the tournament, this must be settled prior to the start of the game. Any such errors discovered once play begins should be pointed out and corrected, but may not be the basis of any protest. All action played under the incorrect situation will stand as official. (Example: In the 3rd inning, a 10U team discovers that the pitching plate is set at 40 feet vice the official 35 feet. Ruling: The pitching plate will immediately be moved to 35 feet, and all play up to that point will stand.)


Order of Finish after Pool Play


Upon completion of pool play, seedings will be determined by record, with each team receiving 2 points for a win and 1 point for a tie.  If teams are tied in points, their seeding will be determined in the following order:


  1. Head-to-head – Note that head-to-head only applies if one team has beaten ALL teams with which it is tied.


Example 1:  In a 5 team bracket, Team A beats team B, Team B beats team C, Team A beats Team C, and teams A, B, and C finish tied in record.  Teams D and E have worse records, and finish 4th and 5th in the bracket.  Since Team A beat Team B and Team C, Team A gets the #1 seed for the bracket.


Example 2:  In a 4 team bracket, Team A beats team B, Team B beats team C, Team C beats Team A, and teams A, B, and C finish tied in record.  Team D has the worst record, and finishes 4th in the bracket.  Since none of the tied teams beat all the other teams in the bracket, the next level of tie-breaker is needed to decide the seeding.


Example 3:  In a 6 team bracket, Team A beats team B, Team A beats team C, Team A ties Team D, and teams A, B, C, and D finish tied in record.  Teams E and F have worse records, and finish 5th and 6th in the bracket.  Since Team A did not beat all teams with which it is tied, the next level of tie-breaker is needed to decide the seeding.


  1. Runs allowed


  1. Runs scored


  1. Coin toss


NOTE:  If multiple teams are tied in record, once tie-breaker procedures are successful in seeding one team – thus “removing them from the tie” – tie-breaker procedures for the remaining team begin again at head-to-head.


Example 4:  In a 4 team bracket, Team A beats Team B, 4-3.  Team B beats Team C, 9-0.  Team C beats Team A, 7-6.  All three of those teams defeat Team D, 7-0.  Teams A, B, and C are now tied in record.  They are also not able to break the tie using head-to-head.  So the next tie-breaker is used, and Team B gets the #1 seed by virtue of allowing 4 runs.  Note that, while Team A has allowed 10 runs, and Team C has allowed 15 runs, Team C still gets the #2 seed, because they beat Team A head-to-head.  This is because, once Team B got the #1 seed, the tie-breaker procedures began over with head-to-head being the first tie- breaker between A and C.


Determining Final Order of Finish


After completion of tournament play, the 3rd place team shall be the losing semi-final team that gave up the least runs in their semi-final game.  If the two losing semi-finalists gave up the same number of runs, the 3rd place team will be determined by the following tie-breaker rules:


  1. Runs scored in their semi-final game.


  1. Average runs allowed on Sunday.


  1. Average runs scored on Sunday.


  1. Average runs allowed all tournament.


  1. Average runs scored all tournament.


  1. Head-to-head


  1. Coin toss


If The Tournament Is Incomplete Due To Weather


If, for any reason, tournament winners can not be determined on the field, final finishing position will be determined by coin toss between all teams seeded highest after pool play, who are not yet eliminated.


Example 1: Straight seeding is used. No elimination games are played. The #1 seed from Saturday is the Champion, and the #2 seed is Runner-Up. If there were two teams tied for #1 seed after Saturday play, a coin flip will determine the Champion between those two teams.


Example 2: After pool play, Team 1 finished first in Pool A, and Team 2 finished first in Pool B. No elimination games are played. Team 1 and Team 2 will flip a coin to determine the Champion and Runner-Up.


Example 3: After pool play, Team 1 finished first in Pool A, and Team 2 finished first in Pool B. Team 3 finished second in Pool A, and Team 4 finished second in Pool B. Team 1 loses their first elimination game, and the rest of elimination play is cancelled. Team 2 is the Champion. Team 3 and Team 4 flip a coin to determine Runner-Up.


Refund Policy


The following is the PONY East Zone Girls Softball refund policy which this tournament will adhere to:


  1. Entry Refund policy – no refunds to teams that withdraw within two weeks of the tournament’s start date.


  1. Refund Policy once the tournament begins:
    1. If no (0) games are started or completed, the teams will be refunded 2/3 of the original entry fee within 7 days of the conclusion of the tournament
    2. If only 1 game is completed, the teams will be refunded ½ of the original entry fee within 7 days of the conclusion of the tournament.
    3. After 2 games are completed, no refund will be granted.





  • Trophies
  • All Age Groups – 1st and 2nd place individual & team trophies
  • 10U Silver bracket – 1st and 2nd place team trophies & individual medals
  • A Pony National Qualifier Championship Flag – 1st place team in each age group


  • Each team will be provided with coach’s award medals to be presented to a player from the opposing team. These awards can be given as MVP awards, sportsmanship awards, best defensive player or best offensive player.


  • Winner’s berths will be awarded at the end of the tournament. The number of winning berths is dependent on the number of teams entered:


  • For 10u and 12u:
    • 4-8 teams: One berth
    • 9-12 teams: Two berths
    • 13-18 teams: Three berths
    • 19 and above: Four berths


  • For 14u:
    • 8-12 teams: One berth
    • 13-16 teams: Two berths
    • 17-23 teams: Three berths
    • 24 and above: Four berths 
  • Every attempt will be made to honor the 4 game guarantee. However if a situation develops and teams forfeit or the weather does not cooperate, the Tournament Director or Field Director will attempt to reschedule games, shorten games, and/or cancel games to complete the tournament. The Tournament is considered complete when 40% of the games have been played and trophies will be awarded to the winners based on the rule for breaking ties.

Other Information


  • Poor sportsmanship will not be tolerated.


  • Let’s keep it fun and PLAY BALL!! Teams are responsible for their fans. Should a fan get ejected, representing said team, that team may be subject to forfeiture under the discretion of the Umpire and Tournament Director or Field Director.


  • Teams could face forfeiture of game or possible ejection from the tournament for any flagrant act of improper sportsmanship by a player, coach, fan or parent associated with that team, with NO REFUND.


  • Team Dugouts: During the game only coaches and players are allowed in dugouts.
  • Please help us keep the dugouts clean upon your team finishing the game by picking up any trash left by your team in the dugouts.
  • PLEASE NOTE: No soft toss into the fences of the facilities is allowed unless whiffle balls are used.


Weather and Scheduling


  • In the event of inclement weather, all teams will be contacted via email, and schedule information will be posted on the tournament web site:
  • We will need each team to provide us with a cell phone number and e-mail where they can be reached before, during, and immediately preceding the tournament. (E.g. Cell, Pager, hotel). Please email this information to team contacts
  • Please check your e-mail 3 days prior to the tournament, including the night before, if applicable, in the event information needs to be passed on; (e.g. Schedule Changes, weather conditions or conflicts, and length of games) E-mail and web page are two ways we will attempt to notify managers or team representative if a large number of teams have to be contacted in a short period. Make sure the e-mail address that you provide when entering the tournament is valid. If staying at local hotel please provide your contact information upon check in on Friday.
  • Any special requests for scheduling considerations (early or late start) should be submitted to each age group tournament director not later than April 4th, 2010.
  • Upon checking in, verify with the Tournament Director for your age group a cellular number at which your team can be contacted during the tournament should an emergency arise.
  • During the tournament, the Tournament Directors for each age bracket may be reached from information listed on contact page
  • Teams must be prepared to play 30 minutes prior to the scheduled start time of a game, or 1 hour ahead of schedule if bad weather is forecasted. Otherwise forfeit may be declared. (Tournament Director or Field Director will notify team representative if bad weather is forecasted.)

Weather & Scheduling, NOTE: If inclement weather or other conditions impede the normal progress of the tournament or pool play, the Tournament Director for that age group reserves the right to change the tournament format in order to achieve the maximum number of games played or to declare an order of finish. If the tournament is unable to finish, then refer to the document “Determining Final Order of Finish if Tournament not completed”. Vienna Stars shall make every effort to be fair and non-partial in the event of stoppage of play due to weather conditions.