Variety of events scheduled at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium

Variety of events scheduled at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium

Built in 1987, the ASA Hall of Fame Stadium has certainly become the Mecca of not only college softball but of all softball as well. Besides hosting the NCAA Division I Women's College World Series every year but one since 1990, the facility has hosted men's and women's slow pitch, men's and women's fast pitch, youth fast pitch championships and national qualifiers and international fast pitch.

This year is a good example of the variety of softball events that will be held at the facility, which is currently being renovated as part of a four-stage process to upgrade it for future events. A week before hosting the WCWS for the 25th time, the NCAA Division II Softball Championship will be held at OGE Energy Field, May 19-25. Two days later, the Division I WCWS will commence and continue through June 3rd.

The Division One Softball Championship has been held annually since 1982, when the NCAA assumed control of college softball but, unlike the Division I championship, the Division II event has been held at different facilities. Salem, VA hosted the Division II championship last year with West Texas A&M defeating Valdosta State, 3-2, for its first softball national title. West Texas is currently ranked No. 1 among Division II schools.

Besides the premier college events being held at the facility, for the first time the ISF Junior Women's World Championship will be held August 9-15 with teams representing the United States, Japan, Italy, Chinese Taipei, Great Britain, Venezuela, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Canada, Czech Republic, Australia, Argentina, Mexico and Brazil expected to compete. Although this is the first time for this championship to be held at the Hall of Fame Complex, this is the second time Oklahoma City has hosted an ISF Junior World Championship. The 1987 Junior World was scheduled to be held at the Hall of Fame Stadium but the facility wasn't done in time and had to be moved to a local facility in OKC. In 1987 Olympians Julie Smith and Michele Granger led the USA to the World title at Eggeling Stadium. The last time this event was held was in 2013 when Japan defeated Team USA, 3-0, in Brampton, Ontario, Canada.

"We're excited to host the ISF Junior Women’s World Championship for the first time at the ASA Hall of Fame Complex," said Craig Cress, Executive Director of ASA/USA Softball. "Oklahoma City is known to many as the ‘Softball Capital of the World.’ Hosting this championship further cements that legacy. Fans of the sport will be exposed to some of the future stars of softball in the world."

Other events including fast pitch for youth and adult slow pitch will be held throughout the summer and will certainly be worthwhile for softball fans who journey from throughout the world to watch the best in softball. And there is no doubt about it; the ASA Hall of Fame Stadium will continue to be the mecca of all of softball and provide the best softball possible for the thousands of fans who will come to OKC in 2105 and in the years to come.

Bill Plummer III worked more than 30 years as the communications coordinator/National Softball Hall of Fame services manager at the Amateur Softball Association national office. He is the coauthor of several noted softball books, including his award-winning A Series of Their Own: the History of the Women’s College World Series.