Our Program

Program and Philosophy

Organized since 1993, the North Clackamas Junior Softball Association offers both competitive and recreational girls fastpitch softball programs.  NCJSA objectives are to promote good sportsmanship, develop skills, encourage physical fitness and promote the sport of softball.  

NCJSA is different from other associations in that we encourage kids from the same school and neighborhoods to play on the same team. We find this benefits the children as well as the parents by fostering relationships, carpooling, etc.  Financial scholarships are available.

Organization

NCJSA is governed by an all-volunteer Board of Directors who work closely with our school board and business community to ensure that all girls who wish to play softball and t-ball have the opportunity to do so.  We are here to serve the kids of our community so please contact us with your concerns or suggestions...or become a coach or board member to really pitch in!

Monthly Board/Coach Meeting Schedule

The NCJSA Board, together with the Coaches of our league meet together on the third Sunday of every month at 6:30PM.  Parents are encouraged to attend.  Meetings are usually held at Mocha Express.  Check the Calendar of Events for details about the next board meeting.

Explanation of Participant Age Levels

Each girl can make the choice to join a team at or above their age and skill levels (the U means under, the 10U category is for ages 10 and Under, 9 and 10 year olds as well as 8 year olds who are ready to compete at that level)

Teams are broken down as follows:

T-Ball ages 5 - 7, 8U, 10U, 12U, 14U, 18U

A participant's age is determined by her age as of Dec 31 of the prior year.  As an example, if a participant turned 15 on Jan 12, 2012, she could play on a 14U, 16U, or 18U team during the 2012 season since she was age 14 on Dec 31, 2010.

Explanation of Competition Levels

For ages 8U through 18U, the teams are further broken down by skill level.

Competitive Teams "Practice so they won't get it wrong":

  • level: The highest level of competition.  This is full pitching speeds and highly competitive softball.
  • B level: The basic level of 'competitive' softball.  These teams can have fast pitchers, great hitters and excellent fielders.  There tends to be a wide variation in skills at this level, from experienced teams that are on the edge of being 'A' level to less experienced teams that have just recently made the transition from 'C' level.

Recreational Teams "Practice to get it right":

  • C level: These recreational teams tend to have players that are learning the sport or playing purely for fun, camaraderie and exercise.  The league monitors the performance of these teams and sometimes will require a 'C' team to move to 'B' level if they win too many games: this assures the recreational teams are focused on fun, learning, and exercise instead of winning.

Therefore you will find teams designated: T-Ball, 10U-A, 10U-B, 10U-C, 12U-A, 12U-B. 12U-C, 14U-A, 14U-B, 14U-C and so forth.  Depending on the number of registrants throughout all the leagues NCJSA plays against,  you will not find all skill levels at all ages: there tend to be a minimal number of 'A' Teams at younger ages, 'B' teams abound at most ages, and fewer 'C' teams exist at the older ages.

If You are a New Player

Girls who are new to the sport tend to start playing at the 'C' level.  Coaching at the 'C' level is strongly focused on skills development and a positive experience for each participant.  New players should not hesitate to play at this level since 'C' coaches are specifically focused on skills development.

New participants are also frequently found at the 'B' level and can be quite successful at the 'B' level with a strong work ethic.  New participants are encouraged to enter at the 'B' level when they have close friends on the team (since sports is about team play and friendship) or have a natural aptitude for the sport.

Season

Practices typically start right around spring break (mid-to-late March).  All teams are practicing during April.  League games usually start in late April or early May and run through the end of June.  A few  competitive or tournament teams practice well before March and play games all the way through Summer into Fall ball.

Practice Schedule

Practice schedules are set by the coaches and limited by field availability.  Most teams practice 2-3 days per week during the March/April practice season. Practices are usually 2 weeknights and possibly a Saturday practice.  Some coaches try to incorporate indoor gym time for practices during inclement weather, however since the significant cost of gym time is borne exclusively by the coach, the team sponsors and team members, gym practices are typically performed only by the more competitive team classes (A, B and Tournament-only teams).

After the game season has started in May, many coaches will reduce practices to one or two days per week since there are frequently two league games during each week.

Practice Fields

Practice fields are located throughout North Clackamas County.  Refer to the field locations page for a list of fields and maps to their locations.

Game Schedule

All games are scheduled to start at 6:30pm unless otherwise arranged by coaches.  League games are M-TH unless other arrangements are made for special circumstances or in rescheduling "rain out" games.

League games are on weeknights.  Many teams will schedule themselves to play tournament games on various weekends throughout the season: tournament games are completely at the discretion (and expense) of the coach, the team sponsors and team players.

Teams (except T-Ball) will typically play two league games per week during May and June. Rainout re-schedules are the responsibility of the two coaches to find a mutually compatible re-schedule time and available field.  If a coach fails to re-schedule a rainout game during the season, that team will forfeit the game.

Game time limits vary by age level. Typically, most games will conclude within 2 hours of the start time.

Game Fields

Game fields are located throughout Clackamas County.  Refer to the field locations page for a list of all the home fields and some of the 'away' fields plus maps to their locations.

League games may be in localities such as Milwaukie, Molalla, Canby, Lake Oswego, West Linn, Oregon City, Colton and Portland. Each season is slightly different and depends on the age group and composition of opposing teams throughout Clackamas County.

Tournaments

The NCJSA league sponsors the Family Fun Day (Opening Day) exhibition games, plus the End of Season Tournament for ages 8 - 14 B and C level.

Many NCJSA teams decide to play in invitational weekend tournaments.  It is up to the coach, the team sponsors and the team parents to decide which tournaments they would like to participate in and to generate the funds to sign up for each tournament.  There are numerous tournaments available all year long: the NCJSA links page lists some of the web sites where tournaments can be found.

Umpires

For age 10 and above, the league makes every effort to schedule a youth or adult formally trained umpire for each game, however, due to the large volume of games played throughout the county, some games will not have paid umpires available and a parent volunteer may be sought: parent/coach volunteer umpires are needed more often with the younger or  'recreational' level teams than with the older or  'competitive' level teams.  Umpire training is offered by CCGSA during the early part of the season and individuals interested in becoming a paid umpire are always sought by CCGSA:  please see the CCGSA website for more information.


 
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