MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Former University of Memphis softball pitcher Ellen Roberts has signed with the Chicago Bandits, a National Pro Fastpitch team, on Monday. Roberts, along with three additional Australian athletes, has officially signed a one-year contract with the Bandits.

Roberts is the first player under head coach Natalie Poole to have signed a contract with the NPF.

“I am very proud of Ellen and am excited for her opportunity to compete in the U.S. again, and on a national stage,” said Poole. “She was a great contributor on the mound for us, and has competed extremely well for her home country. I look for her to have success in the NPF, and we will be rooting for her from here in Memphis.”

Since 2005, the Chicago Bandits have been members of the NPF league. Entering their 13th season as a franchise, the Bandits have provided the Chicago area with high-level softball talent and entertainment en route to capturing six regular season titles and four Cowles Cup championships, the most recent coming during the 2016 campaign.

Roberts competed for the Tigers from 2011-14 and practically re-wrote the record books after her four years with Memphis. She currently is the record holder in many pitching categories including most wins (41), saves (8), appearances (133), starts (103), innings pitched (659.1), and strikeouts (488) in school history. Three times in her career, Roberts struck out 13 batters which ranks seventh in Memphis history.

As a senior, Roberts was named an NFCA All-Region Third Team selection after leading the Tigers with 12 wins and a 2.89 ERA in 33 starts.

After graduating from Memphis, Roberts has competed in the Italian Professional League for two seasons. She has also been selected for the Australian Open Women’s National team, the New South Wales Women’s team and the Aussie Spirit team who will be competing for the Tokyo Cup later this year.

National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) is headquartered in Nashville, Tenn.  The league, created to give elite female fastpitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL).  NPF is the Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women’s fastpitch softball and has been since 2002.
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