For immediate release.
PFX Athletics announces expansion of Dot Richardson’s National Collegiate Softball Invitational in 2018
The final call was just made on the 2017 NCSI and already Team PFX is gearing up for the 2018 Division I tournament with big news about new and exciting offerings at the 2018 National Collegiate Softball Invitational.
“We already have six teams confirmed for next year,” said Bob Borak, Events Director at PFX Athletics. “We are anticipating twelve teams each year over the next three years. It’s really a great event and we’re looking forward to more community involvement as it grows.” In the past, the NCSI has been limited to only six teams, save 2015 when the event organizer, PFX Athletics, allowed several teams to register late due to some weather issues up north that stranded several teams in Florida with no one to play.
This is not an unusual situation for PFX Athletics. “As the host of THE Spring Games, teams know they can call on us when the weather goes bad and many of the coaches at the Division I level were with us when they coached at the DII or DIII level,” explained Mr. Borak. “They know we’ve always done our best to take them in when they find that the weather did not cooperate with their previous plans.” Over the past several years, the weather has been crisp and sunny and a welcome reprieve for many of the coaches who typically come from areas covered in snow. “We don’t have problems with snow here,” Mr. Borak laughs.
But not all teams have happened upon the NCSI at the last minute. Through the years, several teams have remained loyal to the NCSI, a nod to the success of the event. In particular, UT Chattanooga has been a participant from the very beginning. “That’s not uncommon for us,” says Mr. Borak of returning teams “we’ve seen a lot of teams return to us over the years at THE Spring Games and NCSI because we really do our best to work with the coaches to give them the experience they want.”
Mr. Borak’s reference to THE Spring Games, PFX Athletics’ signature event, is not a small matter. In 2016 and 2017, PFX Athletics’ signature event has hosted over 360 college teams in Lake County, Florida. “Compared to THE Spring Games, the NCSI is a very manageable event for us,” said Mr. Borak when asked to compare the two events. “I think what we’ve experienced as an organization is the opportunity, through THE Spring Games, to really perfect our communication and customer service with the Division II and III schools and now we have the opportunity to sharpen those skills at the Division I level by expanding this event to more teams.” For 2018, PFX Athletics has already confirmed:
Morgan State University
Fairleigh Dickinson University
University of Toledo
University of Detroit Mercy
In addition to Chattanooga, Liberty, and Morgan State, teams that have participated regularly over the past few years, the event has hosted numerous top-25 teams including UCLA, Michigan, UCF, Missouri, and Minnesota, to name a few. In 2015, the event served as host to the first-ever Olympic-head-coach-face-off as Dot Richardson’s (USA Softball 1996, 2000) Liberty Flames took on Danielle Henderson’s (USA Softball 2000) Red Hawks; this was the first time that two former Olympic players faced each other on the field as collegiate head coaches.
Legends Way Ballfields at the National Training Center, where the NCSI is held, will also be the host of several championships in the coming years including the (collegiate) NAIA World Series and the (youth) PGF East Coast Nationals.
“The National Training Center makes history; it’s what we do and it’s an important part of this event,” explained Ms. Strange. With connections to Olympic softball and several National programs, Legends Way is the place to be as softball moves its way toward Tokyo in 2020. “There is a lot of excitement around the sport, now that we’re back in the Olympics, and the NCSI is a great way for teams, players, and fans to gear up for the year.”
Says Mr. Borak of the event: “as a season opener, it really does not get much better than this.”
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