Annual Softball Tournament Raises Record $17,500
Months of preparation and beautiful weather combined to produce one of the most successful annual North Grounds Softball Invitational to date last weekend, with a record high charitable donation of $17,500 to local nonprofit Children, Youth & Family Services.
With over 1,400 students and professors playing on 112 teams from 48 law schools in this year's invitational, held March 30-April 1, student members of the North Grounds Softball League, particularly tournament directors Kelli Scheid and John Bates, had their hands full in organizing the event, which Scheid called the "the focal point of our year as an organization." However, despite a rise in the number of participants from previous years, favorable weather conditions made the event easier to manage than last year's rain-plagued tournament, Scheid said.
"As you might imagine, coordinating 250 softball games on 13 fields while keeping 1,400 people happy is a huge undertaking," Scheid said. "Thankfully, the weather held for us this year, which made our jobs much easier."
The effort paid off: before expenses, the tournament raised approximately $90,000. Besides the record-high donation of $17,500 to CYFS, the primary beneficiary of the tournament proceeds for eight years running, the Public Interest Law Association received a donation of $3,000, and the Legal Aid Justice Center received $2,500 at the Homerun Derby on Saturday.
"Overall, I think it was very successful," Scheid said.
Of the six teams from UVA participating this year, UVA Men's Gold came out on top in the men's division for the fifth consecutive year, defeating Regent in the eighth inning, 9-8.
UVA experienced a heartbreaking loss as well: Maryland ended UVA Co-Rec Gold's eight-year winning steak, winning with a walk-off homer in the bottom of the seventh inning. Additionally, UVA Co-Rec Orange advanced to the Elite 8, losing in the quarterfinals. Florida Coastal defeated Maryland in the final co-rec round.
NGSL Commissioner Matt Watson echoed Scheid's positive evaluation of the event.
"The invitational is unique in its capacity to bring together law students from across the country for an extremely competitive and social weekend," he said. "NGSL delights in showing off the best of Charlottesville to students from other schools."