New Coast Senior Softball League (NCSSL)
In the early 1980s a few retirees (Nick Kotas, Link Lincavage, and John Rawlings) got together and remembered their younger days of playing baseball. They each had enjoyed playing baseball in Little League (or whatever semi-organized baseball was available), school, college, military, or company ball. Plenty of good memories and good times on the fields. Over a few beers they thought it would be great if they could play again in their retirement. They decided to start up a league of their own, the senior softball league.
They put announcements in store windows, flyers on car windows, church bulletins, in the newspaper, anywhere they could get the attention of others that would like to play. As interest quickly grew, among both men and women, they had enough players to choose some coed teams and start playing games. They found an available ballfield at Pacific Beach Community Park and started playing weekly games. They all committed to at least one game each week.
Eventually word got around that seniors were playing baseball each week and their numbers grew. They had over 100 players and formed as many as 6 teams with 3 games each week. Needing more room for games they looked around for a park with more baseball fields. The moved to Cadman recreation center where 2 fields were available. That allowed them to play 2 morning and 1 afternoon game each week. For the next 3 years the league evolved, grew and shrank, into what it is today, the New Coast Senior Softball League. We share a lot of fun and get some good exercise while enjoying a sport we all love. We also enjoy the after game lunches with stories of our great playing at the game and our better years long ago.
Due to Covid 19 we were off the fields for over 2 years. We also lost the use of Cadman parks during school hours which eliminated our Thursday games.
The league began a search for a new location to restart playing when Covid 19 restrictions allowed a resumption of outdoor sporting events. The league evaluated over 40 potential softball fields during the search and were lucky enough to find the ideal playing facility for senior softball at Coronado Tidelands Park. Initially there was reluctancy by some players to move to Coronado after years of playing at Cadman. After getting a chance to play on these great fields, experience the ideal location/views, great weather and the excellent support from the Recreation Department, we expect Tidelands to be our long-term home. Since arriving in Coronado we have had the pleasure of adding a number of new players from Coronado and the surrounding area. We currently have 4 co-ed teams that play 2 games every week on 2 fields at Tidelands. As we continue to grow the league, we add new players to teams and we will look at adding new teams as appropriate
The league caters to players of all levels of ability that desire to enjoy comradery on the field and enhance their softball skills through practice and support of others. Many of our new players have not played in a decade(s) and start out rusty and then begin to improve their skills but most importantly enjoy the exercise and being part of a team. Other new players have been playing in one of the many nearby leagues and are enjoy adding another day they can play the game they love. Nick, Link and John played with us into their ’90s enjoying each moment. We have had the added pleasure of playing with two National Senior Softball Hall of Fame players John Rawlings class of 2009 and Ken Lockman class of 2017. Both were excellent players, great people and fantastic coaches on and off the field.
We welcome men and women who are over 55 years old. We are at the fields (Tidelands Park) playing every Thursday morning warming up from 9-10am and games start at 10am. New players are always welcomed to come out give it a try for a few weeks. If you decide to continue, we have very reasonable yearly rates for area residents. We are a fun and exercise league and don’t keep stats or win/loss records.
The mission of the NCSSL is to maintain a recreational softball league for people, aged 55 and above, in San Diego County which promotes in order of priorities: safety, sportsmanship, exercise, enjoyment, camaraderie, enhancing skills, softball knowledge, equitable competition and, finally, winning. Our goal is to create an enjoyable atmosphere for team play, which fosters respect for the individual and the game for players of all abilities.
At this point there are several different senior softball leagues all over San Diego. They play almost every day of the week and at both morning and evening games. Some of the teams have played in the San Diego Senior Olympics, and the Senior Softball World Series.
For more information go to our website, ncssl.org or contact:
John Meyers: 619-319-0861
Email: [email protected]