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Thread: NSA, ASA, Pony, USSSA???

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    I can talk softball all day Tewks's Avatar
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    Default NSA, ASA, Pony, USSSA???

    What's up with all the organizations? What are the best? Do they serve different roles? Why would I join one over another? I am definitely from the baseball world, trying to learn what the differences are.

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    3sDad
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    You dont have to necessarily join any of them, a league can be sanctioned, but you dont really join...Its a tournament sanctioning body and they usually all have an entry fee.....Most of them you have to play in (and win) certain tournaments of THEIRs to play in THEIR World Series, Nationals etc...like in ASA Nationals...You have to earn a berth to play in the Nationals...
    You can play in their tourneys but you dont have to stick with one or the other...In the Deep South, in the younger ages <14 USFA is by far the largest...NSA and USSSA virtually non existent and ASA (on life support now)only has a couple tourneys that make...
    BE VERY careful, ask travel teams in your area which sanctioning body (league...be it ASA, NSA, USSSA, they use...some are out for just your money, crappy tourneys at crappy fields...Buyer Beware!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tewks View Post
    What's up with all the organizations? What are the best? Do they serve different roles? Why would I join one over another? I am definitely from the baseball world, trying to learn what the differences are.

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    Certified softball maniac InsidePitch's Avatar
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    Someone figured out there was money to be made being the umbrella organization. Which one to join, that would probably be a team or coach decision based on the strength of the team. I think ASA has some B level stuff. We just finished up the Pony Nationals (Really a Regional) in NC and it was very well run considering they had over 150 teams playing over 5 days in heat well over 100. I can't speak to the other associations but am sure they probably put on a pretty good regional or National event.

    As for Baseball you guys seems to have quite a few orgs. Cal Ripken, LL, Babe Ruth, Pony, USSSA, Dixie. Just a confusing. )

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    MTR
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tewks View Post
    What's up with all the organizations? What are the best? Do they serve different roles? Why would I join one over another? I am definitely from the baseball world, trying to learn what the differences are.
    Remember when all the boxing associations appeared? Same thing.

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    3sDad
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    And for the record, I wouldnt attend another NSA touragedy again if they paid 150% of the expenses, but I digress...
    as a 'league' you will have to align (join) some sort of sanctioning body to be considered for their World Series...Little League, Dixie Youth... but as a travel team you can play them all...or just one...Its your decision...and again BUYER BEWARE

    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    Remember when all the boxing associations appeared? Same thing.

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    I can talk softball all day Bishop's Avatar
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    My opinion, there isn't a ton of difference between them in my area. I only have experience with NSA and ASA. I've never seen a Pony or USFA tournament around here. USSSA exists but the tournaments are far enough away that trying to compete there would drive up our costs too much.

    Our choices are ASA and NSA, we play both every year. We go to the 'best' tournaments available each weekend during our season. Best determined by expected strength of competition and who is hosting it. There are certain tournaments that traditionally have strong competition every year and certain organizations and TD's that always run a good event, regardless of sanctioning body.

    The other consideration would be what national you want to go to. For us that's determined by when and where. 10's and 12's have always gone to go to NSA in our organisation because ASA Nat's run right up against the start of middle school ball. The school coach isn't thrilled about the bulk of her team showing up to the first game with no team practice and worn out from finishing up at a gruelling tournament a day or two prior. Who could blame her.

    The differences are minor when it comes to rules. The biggest differences seem to be on the administration, registration and qualification areas of teams. It's the same game, different colored shirst on the Umpires. The only rules differences I even notice during a game are the substitution, courtisey runner and DP/Flex/EP rules. That really just boils down to remembering which alphabet soup acronym is associated with this weeks tournament when filling out my line up cards.

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    Softball Junkie mad hornet's Avatar
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    NSA and USSSA allow the use of EP's which gives the coach the option to bat 9, 10, or 11 in any game. Straight up ASA with no rule modifications only allows 9. As a coach I like the option of using EP's as you can also make free defensive substitutions with them. You have less parent issues if you play it right.

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    Certified softball maniac PA SB Dad's Avatar
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    I posted this a while back, but PONY went to EP this year as well, but does not use DP/FLEX, whereas in USSSA you can use BOTH EPs and the DP/Flex. ASA is strictly DP/Flex. Don't know about NSA.

    The main difference I've seen in eastern PA between the associations is that PONY is very much a regional organization that does not have a "national" reach, but attracts the better teams in the local/regional tournaments, especially at 14U and younger. USSSA seems to be making a lot of progress, but what I've seen here is that the majority of teams, even those from "A" organizations, register to play as a "B" team, in large part because there are just more B tournaments than A or Open tournaments in our area. The NSA organization is terrible in our part of the state, so there is little support for it here.

    ASA still has the most prestige, even in PA. But at the younger age groups, ASA is not that popular, in large part because they do not have as many tournaments, they do not make the registration and rostering process easy, and the National tournaments usually require a huge commitment in terms of travel and cost.

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    Softball Junkie mad hornet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PA SB Dad View Post
    I posted this a while back, but PONY went to EP this year as well, but does not use DP/FLEX, whereas in USSSA you can use BOTH EPs and the DP/Flex. ASA is strictly DP/Flex. Don't know about NSA.

    The main difference I've seen in eastern PA between the associations is that PONY is very much a regional organization that does not have a "national" reach, but attracts the better teams in the local/regional tournaments, especially at 14U and younger. USSSA seems to be making a lot of progress, but what I've seen here is that the majority of teams, even those from "A" organizations, register to play as a "B" team, in large part because there are just more B tournaments than A or Open tournaments in our area. The NSA organization is terrible in our part of the state, so there is little support for it here.

    ASA still has the most prestige, even in PA. But at the younger age groups, ASA is not that popular, in large part because they do not have as many tournaments, they do not make the registration and rostering process easy, and the National tournaments usually require a huge commitment in terms of travel and cost.
    NSA also allows DP / Flex or DH or whatever they call it. No Pony in Ohio that I know of and yes ASA still has the most prestige here as well.

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    Administrator Ken Krause's Avatar
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    I seem to recall that PONY was very big in Ohio a few years ago. The guy who took over the original Fastpitch Forum (on which this forum is based) was a big wheel in PONY back then. That was the early 2000s, I think.
    Ken Krause
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