For Further Information, Contact
Kathy Dosen, 303-290-7494
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NPF Announces Game of the Week on Fox Sports Net
DENVER – JUNE 3, 2008 –National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) League commissioner Cheri Kempf confirmed today that Fox Sports Net will telecast eleven NPF games this summer.
NPF’s Game of the Week will air nationally on FSN beginning on Thursday, June 12 and will run through August.
“We are thrilled to partner with FSN to nationally broadcast our games this summer”, said Kempf. “The ability to reach a national audience for the first time on a consistent basis is essential in creating new fans for the League and another sign of the growing appeal for our exciting game.”
Kempf will handle the color commentary duties for the broadcasts, a role she has held with both Fox Sports and ESPN. Kempf has extensive knowledge of the league and the game as a former player, author, owner of a training facility and coach, including a position with the USA Softball coaching staff.
“NPF is a family-oriented, fun, fast-paced, emerging sport with many marketable stars. The exposure for NPF on FSN will provide consistent, measurable return for sponsors and will bring national attention to our League and our world-class athletes,” continued Kempf.
Working alongside Kempf in the booth, will be play-by-play veteran Bernie Guenther. Guenther has called games in several different sports and leagues during his career, including the SEC, Big Ten and NPF.
“Bringing the NPF to FSN seemed like a natural fit,” said Josh Oakley, Manager of Acquisitions for FSN. “Women’s softball has always played a key role on our network and we see this partnership as a great opportunity for both parties.”
Fans of NPF can follow their favorite players and teams as they compete throughout the season for a NPF Championship Series berth which will be contested in Kimberly, Wis., August 21-24.
NPF Game of the Week Schedule
Saturday, June 7, 2008 – New England Riptide @ Philadelphia Force; Airdate: June 12
Wednesday, June 11, 2008 – Washington Glory @ Akron Racers; Airdate: June 19
Saturday, June 14, 2008 – Washington Glory @ Akron Racers; Airdate: June 26
Friday, June 27, 2008 – Team Canada @ Akron Racers; Airdate: July 3
Saturday, July 5, 2008 – Philadelphia Force @ Akron Racers; Airdate: July 10
Wednesday, July 9, 2008 – Rockford Thunder @ Philadelphia Force; Airdate: July 17
Saturday, July 12, 2008 – New England Riptide @ Akron Racers; Airdate: July 24
Thursday, July 24, 2008 – Chicago Bandits @ Philadelphia Force; Airdate: July 31
Thursday, July 31, 2008 – Rockford Thunder @ Akron Racers; Airdate: August 7
Saturday, August 2, 2008 – Chicago Bandits @ Akron Racers; Airdate: August 14
Saturday, August 16, 2008 – Akron Racers @ Philadelphia Force; Airdate: August 21
*check local listings for times
Players to watch during the NPF Game of the Week include pitcher Katie Burkhart and catcher Kristen Miller, both from Arizona State and Megan Gibson, pitcher from Texas A&M who are expected to sign and make their NPF debut on June 7th as members of the Philadelphia Force (June 12th airdate). Each player helped lead her respective university to the finals of the 2008 NCAA Women’s College World Series where Arizona State captured the championship title with the most runs scored in championship game history. Gibson led Texas A&M to a second place finish and was a player of the year finalist after breaking several school records at A&M, including wins, strikeouts, homeruns and RBIs.
The Force will compete against the New England Riptide and Eileen Canney who returns as the 2007 League-leader in strikeouts and ERA. Jocelyn Forest, Carri Martin and Shanel Scott will join the Riptide directly from their appearance as members of Team NPF, an All-Star team chosen to compete against Team USA as part of their "Bound for Beijing" tour.
The schedule will include many other exciting match-ups throughout the season, including the June 11 and 14 games between the Washington Glory and Akron Racers, which are the only two games featuring the 2007 NPF Champion Glory.
The games will feature two of the most dominant pitchers in recent college softball history in Washington’s Taryne Mowatt and Akron’s Angela Tincher. Mowatt helped lead Arizona to consecutive national championships in 2006 and 2007, while Tincher dominated the circle in 2008 for Virginia Tech. In addition to winning the seventh annual USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year Award in 2008, Tincher also received NFCA First-Team All-American honors, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, and was named the Academic All-America of the Year by CoSIDA. When Virginia Tech competed against Team USA this season as part the “Bound for Beijing” tour, Tincher threw a complete game no-hitter.
Players returning to the Washington Glory include Amber Jackson who was the 2007 League leader in homeruns and RBI’s and pitcher Desiree Serrano who led the league with 18 wins. Norrelle Dickson will return to the Racers to defend her title as the 2007 leader for batting average.
FSN is the nation’s leading provider of local sports. FSN’s 16 owned-and-operated regional networks and its affiliated networks reach more than 70 million homes across the U.S. FSN serves as the TV home to nearly two-thirds of all MLB, NHL and NBA teams based in the United States. FSN also produces close to 5,000 live local events each year, including more than 1400 in high definition. In addition to its thousands of home team games and a wide variety of locally produced sports programs, FSN televises national sports events and programs, including Pac-10 and ACC basketball and Pac-10 and Big 12 football.
Major League Baseball is the Official Development Partner of National Pro Fastpitch in the category of women's professional fastpitch softball. The partnership, which began the fall of 2002, is part of The Commissioner's Initiative on Women and Baseball, a League-wide effort to help Major League Baseball and the 30 Major League Clubs build stronger relationships with female audiences.
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Denver, Colorado. 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 Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL).
For in-game sponsorship opportunities, contact NPF Commissioner, Cheri Kempf at 303-290-7494.