National Pro Fastpitch welcomes Softball Canada
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), in conjunction with Softball Canada, Rent One Park and presenting sponsor visitSI, announced the addition of the Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois to the league Tuesday.
The Wild become the sixth affiliate NPF team set to compete in the 2019 season.
“Obviously, this is a tremendous addition to the league for a number of reasons,” NPF commissioner Cheri Kempf said. “To add an international team of the quality of Canada, currently ranked third in the world, and to add the operational excellence of the administration at Rent One Pakr, is a home run for all of us.”
“We are delighted to be announcing our entry into the NPF in 2019,” Softball Canada CEO Hugh Mitchener said. “Commissioner Kempf has been incredibly helpful in setting up our partnership with the Miners organization and we can’t wait to get going next year.”
“With the growth and interest in girls’ and women’s softball over the last decade, this is an incredible opportunity for fans to see world-class, best-of-the-best talent right here at Rent One Park,” Miners COO Mike Pinto said. “These women, including former and future Olympians, could be incredible role models for young girls in our area and to see what can be achieved with dreams and hard work.”
Softball Canada recently finished third at the 2018 Women’s Softball World Championship in August and is currently ranked third in the world by the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC). The Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois will play a 50-game schedule in National Pro Fastpitch and are set to face off with some of the best players in the world, including current and former Olympians.
National Pro Fastpitch will be entering its 16th season in 2019. Teams currently hail from three continents, with players representing the national teams of six different countries. They include the best-of-the-best softball players in the world, including current and former members of Team USA, Olympians, Women’s College World Series champions and MVPs, NCAA record-holders, various conference Players of the Year and many All-Americans.
“We are thrilled that Southern Illinois was chosen as the host region for Team Canada,” Shannon Johnson, CEO of visitSI, said. “visitSI is extremely honored to be the presenting sponsor of the Wild. This gives us an opportunity to showcase our region on an international front. We are also excited about the potential economic impact this could have, both during the season and in the future, as members of the various NPF teams experience beautiful Southern Illinois.”
Fans can follow the Wild on Facebook at Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois, as well as on Twitter and Instagram at CanadianWildSI, as they prepare for the 2019 season.
ABOUT NATIONAL PRO FASTPITCH
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2004, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in fastpitch softball beyond their collegiate and amateur success. The NPF affiliate teams consist of the Aussie Spirit, Beijing Shougang Eagles, Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois, Chicago Bandits, Cleveland Comets and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2019 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the United States, Australia, Canada and China, among which are the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.