Four teams from Chesapeake and Potomac Softball (CAPS) League represented the D.C. area at last week’s Gay Softball World Series in Columbus, Ohio, with DC Union bringing home a third-place trophy to the nation’s capital in the second-highest division.
“This is my seventh straight year of going to the Gay Softball World Series and the first time I’ve won a trophy at the event,” says Tony Mace, CAPS’ assistant commissioner and a member of DC Union. “Do I feel like we had a great team? Yes, but if you would’ve asked me before we went if we would finish in the top three, I would’ve probably told you no. I’m still on an emotional high from our performance last week!”
In gay softball, teams are divided into divisions along ability levels. DC Union, playing in the B Division, placed third out of 40 teams. DC Envy, playing in the C Division, finished seventh among a field of 60. The two teams in the D Division, the DC Shockers and the DC Titans, finished 25th and 33rd, respectively, from among 54 teams.
“We are very proud of how all four DC teams played,” says Matthew Rinker, the commissioner of CAPS. “DC Union finished third out of 40 teams. At that level of skill, Union worked hard in every game to bring home that trophy. DC Envy had an amazing week in Columbus as well, showing power all week long.
“Our two D level teams didn’t finish as high in the standings, but both had good, strong showings, Rinker adds. “The Shockers had a great last day of play, beating two teams before being eliminated by the No. 1 seeded team. And while the Titans finished in 33rd place, they were close in every game and tied the team who came in fourth place, and then lost by two to the team that won second. Our teams showed that CAPS is a league to watch in future years.”
Two other CAPS members, Ed Vincent, the former CAPS commissioner, and Roger Grant, participated as part of the Norfolk Gunners in the Gay Softball World Series’ Master Division, which is designated for those softball players over the age of 50. The Gunners ended up placing fifth out of 19 teams.
Rinker notes that the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance (NAGAAA), the national organization to which CAPS belongs, is seeing growth in membership, with this year marking the largest tournament in the history of the Gay Softball World Series. D.C. previously hosted the Mid-Atlantic Gay Invitational Classic (MAGIC) tournament over the July 4 weekend, and the number of team entries increased by eight over last year.
Rinker says softball is becoming more popular locally, even attracting straight allies who wish to play in the 19-member men’s league or the eight-member women’s league, which is a member of the Amateur Sports Alliance of North America (ASANA). A combined women’s team, DC Swag, will represent CAPS at the ASANA World Series in Orlando in October.
Rinker says CAPS is now preparing for its Fall Ball season, which starts on Sept. 19.
“It’s a great place for people who are interested to come out and play,” Rinker says. “We assign players to teams, so it’s a great place to come out and learn the game if you’ve never played before.”
The Chesapeake and Potomac Softball League’s Fall Ball season starts on Saturday, Sept. 19. To register, or for more information, visit capssoftball.leagueapps.com.
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