MONTGOMERY, Ala. ---- Auburn University at Montgomery has been selected one of 10 host sites for the 2nd Annual NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) announced recently.
In addition to AUM, host institutions include: Columbia College (Mo.), Concordia University (Calif.), Davenport University (Mich.), College of Idaho, Lindsey Wilson College (Ky.), Oklahoma City University, Reinhardt University (Ga.), St. Gregory's University (Okla.) and William Carey University (Miss.). Each host school is guaranteed at least an at-large host berth in the National Championship Opening Round.
"This is a great honor for our university, our student-athletes and our program," head coach Chris Steiner-Wilcoxson said. "We have worked tremendously hard to build this program from the ground up and now, given the opportunity to host the Opening Round, have qualified for the NAIA National Championship for three consecutive years. This year has been another great season for our program and I am sure this Opening Round site will be an incredible experience for the players and coaches of all four teams that will be involved."
AUM, which qualified for the national tournament in 2012 and 2013, sports an overall record of 8-4 in tournament play. The Warhawks have advanced to the final round of competition in each of the previous two seasons. AUM won its respective pool to advance to bracket play in 2012, while it rolled through the Lindsey Wilson Opening Round undefeated last season.
The Opening Round site selection process took into account: geography, facilities, student-athlete experience and host qualification. The four-team brackets will be played at the host sites from May 12-14.
The 40 qualifiers and pairings for the National Championship Opening Round will be announced May 6.
The champions of each of the 10 Opening Round tournaments advance to the 34th annual NAIA Softball World Series in Columbus, Ga., from May 23-29. These programs will participate in a double-elimination national championship format on one championship field – which was home to the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.