Photo: UBC Okanagan Athletics

UBC Okanagan gets new softball team

The new team will be led by long-time softball coach Joni Frei

UBC Okanagan will have a new competitive club take the field this fall as softball gets set to debut in September under the coaching leadership of Joni Frei.

No stranger to the game, Frei’s past roles include head coach of Team BC at the North American Indigenous Games, director of coaching for Softball BC, and assistant coach for NCAA Division I Kennesaw State University and Mercer University.

Originally from Kelowna, Frei’s vision for the program is focused on “recruiting high character, highly motivated achievers both between and beyond the white lines”, and emphasizes that “family, fun, results, and community service will be corner stones of our program.”

Frei has a Master’s degree in Public Administration and is a Chartered Professional Coach and NCCP Master Learning Facilitator and Coach Evaluator.

READ MORE: Rockets season over after tiebreaker loss to Blazers

READ MORE: UBC Okanagan Heat athletes nominated for awards

UBC Okanagan is introducing a new competitive club sport model in 2019-20 that is predominantly participant and sponsorship funded in an effort to provide additional competitive inter-university sport opportunities to students, as well as providing a broader range of sport offerings at the post-secondary level in the Okanagan.

Softball will be among the first teams for UBCO under the new model, and has assembled a strong leadership team to build the program.

As a university player, Frei had considerable success between the lines, including leading her team, Georgia College & State University (GCSU), to a runner up finish at the NCAA Division II World Series and recently being inducted into the GCSU Athletics Hall of Fame.

Frei is especially excited about the value of softball for creating female role models.

“We want our student-athletes to enjoy an incredible experience while graduating as empowered women and capable leaders,” she said.

READ MORE: Okanagan Golf Club welcomes proposed additions to courses

UBC Okanagan director of athletics and recreation, Tom Huisman, explains the virtues of a competitive club model and the potential of the new softball team.

“The benefits of interuniversity sport participation are many, and although there is limited capacity to the number of teams that can be funded through the Department of Athletics & Recreation, softball demonstrated a commitment and opportunity to build a competitive program that has a sustainable future that has community support, inclusive of its local sport organization, Kelowna Minor Fastball.”

READ MORE: PHOTOS: Spring has sprung in the Okanagan-Shuswap

The UBC Okanagan softball team will be one of eight post-secondary institutions competing in the Western Collegiate Softball Association (WCSA). Following an annual fall schedule, the team has aspirations to qualify for the Canadian Collegiate Softball Association National Championships.

The softball team has an exciting future and will positively impact women in sport at UBC Okanagan. UBCO students wanting to be part of the team should plan to attend a player identification camp scheduled for March 30th and contact Ramon Lawrence (ramon.lawrence@ubc.ca) for more details.

Interested sponsors or donors of the new softball team are also invited to contact Lawrence.

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaCapNews
newstips@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

UBCO Heat

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Crews called to overnight fire in Ellison

Kelowna Fire first received the call around 9:55 p.m.

Kelowna RCMP make arrest in fatal stabbing of 16-year-old Elijah Beauregard

An 18-year-old woman is in police custody facing a manslughter charge.

Kelowna Firefighters douse suspicious hedge fire

A 30’ section of cedar hedge burned prompting an RCMP investigation.

West Kelowna director nominated for Juno Award

Johnny Jansen directed B.C. band Said the Whale’s ‘Record Shop’ video

West Kelowna Warriors edge Vernon Vipers 6-4

The teams meet again on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 6 p.m. for the final game of regular season

VIDEO: 2020 BC Winter Games wrap up in Fort St. John as torch passes to Maple Ridge

More than 1,000 athletes competed in the 2020 BC Winter Games

First win, fifth win highlight BC Senior Curling finals

Donna Mychaluk wins first title after finishing second five times; Wes Craig takes fifth crown

Still six cases of COVID-19 in B.C. despite reports of Air Canada passenger: ministry

Health ministry wouldn’t comment on specific flight routes

Violent ends to past Indigenous protests haunt Trudeau government

Trudeau adopted a more assertive tone Friday, insisting the barricade must come down

HIGHLIGHTS: Day one and two at the 2020 BC Winter Games

Athletes had sunny – but cold – weather to work with in Fort St. John

BC Senior Curling titles to be decided in Vernon

Wes Craig, Penny Shantz looking for fifth championships; Steve Wright, Donna Mychaluk into finals

B.C. money laundering inquiry to begin amid hopes for answers, accountability

Eby argued that most B.C. residents already know the previous government, at best, turned a blind eye

Most Read