What To Watch For At The 2019 NPF Championship Series


With a 9-1 win over the Beijing Eagles last Wednesday night, the Chicago Bandits captured the 2019 National ProFastpitch regular-season championship. Concluding their 14th season, the Bandits are heading to familiar territory as they host the National Pro Fastpitch Championship Series Aug. 15-19 at Parkway Bank Sports Complex in Rosemont LIVE on FloSoftball.

NPF Championship Series | How To Watch

The Bandits will face longtime rival the USSSA Pride for this year’s Cowles Cup, as the two are the most decorated teams in the league and have faced off six times before in the championship series. With a 10-2 win back on Aug. 2nd over the Pride, the Bandits snapped an eight-game losing streak against their rivals, which included last season’s playoffs. 

The Bandits took a two-game set against the Pride in Rosemont this past weekend to close out the final weekend of the regular season.

Each team can boast of multiple titles.

Chicago won in 2008, 2011, 2015 and 2016, while The Pride captured titles in 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2018. Other than the 2012 title, when the championship series was rained out, the only year since 2010 that the Bandits or Pride didn’t win the title was 2017 when the Houston Scrap Yard Dawgs beat the Pride.



The Pride weathered a rough July, with former Florida stars Amanda Lorenz and Nicole DeWitt, and Oklahoma's Falepolima Aviu out for the season with knee injuries. Late pickup Kat Moore and Chelsea Goodacre are sidelined with finger injuries, and they join last year's top hitter on the injured list, Sierra Romero, who injured her knee in a preseason exhibition.

In a bold roster move, they sent former Oklahoma stars, pitcher Paige Parker and right fielder Nicole Pendley, to Cleveland for sluggers Brittany Cervantes of Kentucky and Emily Carosone of Auburn, along with the rights to former Florida State pitcher Meghan King.

Taran Alvelo leads the Pride staff with a 1.10 ERA, and with Jolene Henderson and Jailyn Ford lead a strong staff that also includes Megan Good and Jessica Burroughs. Avelo leads all NPF pitchers with a 0.68 WHIP, while Henderson has logged the most innings from the circle in the league with 91.1 innings pitched.

Highlighting recent action, Cervantes, hitting in the cleanup spot, capped a 3-for-3 night with a walk-off home run to beat the Canadian Wild 5-4. NPF leader in both hits (49) and runs (28), Sydney Romero had an explosive series against Beijing, launching a bomb on July 24 and then going 4-for-4 with four runs and three RBI in an 8-0 win against the Eagles. 

On the basepaths, speedy Alexis "Chip" Bennett has been giving opponents headaches, ranking second in the NPF with 15 stolen bases. 


The Bandits are strong from the circle, featuring former Florida Gators pitching stars Kelly Barnhill and Aleshia Ocasio as well as Danielle O'Toole of Arizona and Haylie Wagner of Michigan. Ocasio’s 0.89 ERA ranks second in the NPF stat roll, with Wagner’s 1.02 mark right behind her at third. 

Rachele Fico, the NPF leader in wins with 11, can dominate as well having posted a 7-inning perfect game against the Aussie Peppers back in July, striking out six.

At the plate, catcher Amanda Chidester has been leading the way for the Bandits as the league’s top hitter. In her first year with the Bandits, she sits atop the NPF in home runs with 15, RBIs with 35, a .815 slugging percentage.

Abbey Cheek sits atop the NPF with a .378 batting average, and along with 2018 NPF Player of the Year Brenna Moss, Hannah Flippen’s league-leading four triples, and Gwen Svekis who leads the league in doubles with 12, also provide plenty of pop for the Bandits lineup.

With a sweep of the NPF weekly honors for week 10 of the season, the Bandits are firing on all cylinders heading into the final week of regular season play and the championship series.

Chidester earned Player of the Week honors, tallying at least one extra-base hit in every game she played during the week, along with a home run in four consecutive games. She hit two home runs against the Beijing Eagles and in a game against the Pride, along with posting a five-RBI game against the latter.

Pitcher of the Week honors went to Fico who in the second game of a doubleheader against Beijing held the Eagles to just four hits, with one walk and three strikeouts en route to a 5-1 win.

Fico entered in the bottom of the fifth against the Pride and pitched the rest of the way to a 4-3 win, only allowing one hit and two walks while striking out six in four innings of work to earn the win.

Completing the sweep of the NPF honors, Cheek picked up the Rookie of the Week award after landing a hit in all her games during the week, along with two separate 3-RBI games. During the nightcap of a doubleheader against Beijing, she went 2-for-3 with a double, a home run, and three RBI’s.

The NPF Championship series is set to open with a first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 15th in Rosemont.

2020 PGF 99% Showcase: How To Watch, Time, & Live Stream Info


May 30-31, 2020 FloSoftball will be streaming the PGF 99% Showcase in Clermont, Florida.

Carlyn Wynn Named Minnesota Associate Head Softball Coach

Carly Wynn has been named the Gopher softball associate head coach after most recently spending 2016 through the 2020 shortened season at Arizona State University as an assistant coach, head coach Piper Ritter announced Wednesday. 

Rising Star: 2022 Oklahoma State-Commit Haidyn Sokoloski


Haidyn Sokoloski was nine years old when she hit her first home run, a high fly ball that just managed to clear the fence on a field designed more for baseball than softball. That was seven years ago, but she remembers the scene like it was yesterday.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Gulf Coast Fastpitch League To Launch Summer 2020


The Gulf Coast Fastpitch League (GCFL) is pleased to announce the most exciting structured event to take place in softball in many years. Leaders from some of the top programs in the state of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama have come together to figure out a new way of presenting our sport.

2020 Triple Crown Texas 4th Of July: How To Watch, Time, & Live Stream Info

July 1-5, 2020 FloSoftball will be streaming the 4th of July Texas region with elite squads out of the Lone Star State playing at the Scrap Yard in Conroe.

What You Should Know About Tulsa Elite 21/22 Wood


Tulsa Elite 21/22 Head Coach Darrell Wood dedicated much of his time developing one of the most competitive teams in Oklahoma and nationally. This squad is gritty and versatile. Coach Wood shares how the program started and what you should know about every player on their roster.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Zoom With Chez On Recruiting

Things are changing fast and there are so many questions surrounding the Division I Council’s decision to extend dead period and eligibility for those student-athletes affected by COVID-19 season cancellations.

Rising Star: Oklahoma Bound Shortstop Avery Hodge

Last fall couldn’t have ended better for Avery Hodge. After nearly capturing the PGF Premier Nationals 16U title with Texas Bombers-Jones last summer, the left-handed-hitting shortstop was selected to represent Team USA at the U-17 Women’s Pan American Championship.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

California Berkeley Hires Chelsea Spencer As New Head Softball Coach

BERKELEY – Chelsea Spencer, who won an NCAA title during an All-American career at Cal before embarking on a coaching career, has agreed to become the next softball head coach for the Golden Bears.

What To Watch For At The 2020 Tulsa Elite Summer Invite


After what has seemed like a lifetime without any softball, the annual Tulsa Elite Summer Invitational is getting ready to play ball and bring us back out of the pits of despair. What started in 2011 with 4 fields and 16 teams, has grown to become one of the Nation's Top recruiting events of the year, featuring 96 teams all set to take the field June 4-7 LIVE on FloSoftball.