St. Gregory’s selected to host softball NAIA opening round game

St Gregory's Cavaliers

From SGU Sports Info.
Brad Collins, Sports Information Director

SHAWNEE – St. Gregory’s University has been awarded one of 10 host sites for the NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round, the national office announced Wednesday. The event, featuring a four-team double elimination tournament, will be played May 12-14 at the Firelake Ball Fields (18160 Rangeline Road, Shawnee).

The Opening Round site selection process takes into account geography, facilities, student-athlete experience and host qualification. With their selection, the No. 4-ranked Cavaliers are guaranteed at least an at-large bid to their site’s tournament – the program’s third straight nationals appearance and seventh overall.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to host this national championship event, and we are excited to be playing close to home to kick off the postseason,” said St. Gregory’s coach D.J. Sanchez. “Our team has put in a lot of hard work to climb into the top 5 nationally, and I think this a great reward for that effort.”

The “St. Gregory’s Bracket” is scheduled to be live streamed and will have live stats available. More information will be available soon at

This is the second season the NAIA has used the Opening Round format for softball. The 40 qualifiers and pairings for the event will be announced May 6. St. Gregory’s earned a berth to last year’s tournament, bowing out at the Concordia (Calif.) site.
The champions of each of the 10 Opening Round tournaments advance to the Softball National Championship final site in Columbus, Ga., from May 23-29.

The Firelake complex opened in 2012 and features six softball fields with a central press hub. It plays host to several events throughout the year.

“Firelake has been so gracious throughout this process, and we are so thankful for their help,” Sanchez said. “We are looking forward to the tournament.”

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