Published on October 8th, 2014 | by Sioux City Now0
Sioux City to Host softball World Series in 2015-2016
From the NAIA National Office
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The City of Sioux City’s Convention & Tourism Bureau and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics announced this week that the NAIA Softball World Series has a new home in Sioux City.
The City of Sioux City and Morningside College will host the event in 2015 and 2016. The events will be held at the Elizabeth & Irving Jensen Softball Complex on the Morningside campus on May 22 – 28, 2015 and May 27 – June 2, 2016, which will be the 35th and 36th annual events, respectively.
The NAIA Softball World Series is a 10-team double-elimination format, played on one stadium field. That format went into effect starting in 2013. The NAIA has sponsored the Softball World Series since 1981, when its inaugural championship was held in Conroe, Texas. Currently, 197 institutions sponsor the sport of softball.
“We are extremely excited to bring another National Championship event to the Sioux City community — the NAIA Softball World Series!” said Jim Carr, NAIA President and CEO. “I have no doubt that the City of Sioux City and Morningside College will offer a first-class championship experience for our student-athletes, coaches and fans. I am thrilled to partner again with our friends in Sioux City.”
In addition to the Softball World Series, Sioux City will host the 2014 NAIA Volleyball National Championship (Dec. 2-6, 2014), sponsored by J&L Staffing & Recruiting, and the 2015 NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball National Championship, presented by State Farm (March 11-17, 2015). Both the Volleyball and Division II Women’s Basketball National Championships will take place at the Tyson Events Center. It is the seventh-consecutive year Sioux City has hosted the Volleyball National Championship. The Division II Women’s Basketball National Championship has called Sioux City home since 1998.
“The City of Sioux City is excited to host the Softball World Series,” said Bob Padmore, City Manager for the City of Sioux City. “It is another opportunity to show our community’s hospitality to the athletes and institutions of the NAIA.”
The Elizabeth & Irving Jensen Softball Complex has been the home of Mustangs softball since its completion in 2006. The first game on the field was played March 19, 2007, when Morningside swept Black Hills State (S.D.) by scores of 4-3 and 1-0.
Morningside is a member of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) and sponsors 26 varsity sports. The Mustangs softball team went 30-14 in 2014 under the guidance of head coach Jessica Jones-Sitzmann, who in her 16 seasons is the winningest softball coach in school history (539-306). Last year, the Mustangs won the GPAC Tournament Championship and reached the NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round.
Morningside has made five Softball World Series appearances, most recently in 2012. “All of us at Morningside are excited and honored to have been selected to host the NAIA Softball World Series at our Elizabeth and Irving F. Jensen Softball Complex,” said Morningside College President John Reynders. “We are very proud of this facility and look forward to sharing it with teams and fans from around the country.”
Previous host cities for the NAIA Softball World Series included most recently Columbus, Ga., Gulf Shores, Ala. and Decatur, Ala. 2014 national champion Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) captured its first championship title on May 29 after a 10-6 victory against William Carey (Miss.). In only their sixth year of softball, the Warhawks became the 21st different school to claim a NAIA Softball World Series title in the event’s 34-year history.