The Notre Dame de Namur University softball team has been sharing Notre Dame High School’s softball field for fall ball, preseason, and season games. However, because it is not an official NCAA field, certain games cannot be played there.
NDNU does not have a place for the softball team to play games or practice on campus so they use NDHS’ field for games and occasionally Notre Dame Elementary School’s field to practice. Players have mentioned that in the past, there was a smaller field in the back on NDNU’s campus next to NDES where athletes were able to practice on, but balls would hit the windows and cars around them.
Not only are NDNU players not able to call a field their home to play on but they are also required to find transportation to go to the batting cages where they can practice their hits.
Abriana Arzaga a sophomore on the NDNU softball team said frustrated, “I don’t understand why Joshua Doody created a 10k budget for a drug test but can’t put payments down for a softball field.” Arzaga also mentioned that, “four years ago Belmont residents were willing to pay for a brand-new softball stadium but NDNU said no.”
Players feel as though there could be more effort from the school to create a plan to put a home softball field in place and are confused as to why NDNU would turn down an offer by Belmont residents to supply NDNU with a softball field.
Ashley Carter who has been the NDNU softball coach for a year mentioned, “We don’t have a softball field, the one we would rarely practice on was sold to the elementary school down the hill.” Carter also stated that, “The school does not allow the softball team to reach out to donors for money, we are required to do our own fundraising.” Although the high school allows the NDNU softball team to use their softball field there have been conflicting schedules, “Sometimes we have to change the times of our games and then family members even ones who came from out of state can’t watch their students play.”
Although Carter is able to have the team practice and play on NDHS’s softball field, “It would be nice for the softball team to have a field and if not a field then batting cages or at least a bathroom next to the high school’s softball field. We use a porta-potty down there.”
Although athletes would like to have a softball field at NDNU the head of the athletic department at NDNU Joshua Doody stated that it would be somewhat difficult to have one due to a couple of factors, “We could put a softball field on Deer Field but that could be a potential hazard because it would be blocking the fire path.” The paved path next to Deer Field that is used for emergencies would be cut off if there were an athletic field in the way. Doody also mentioned that, “we have a trade off with Notre Dame High School where we can use their softball field and take care of it while they use our soccer field and do the same. That’s out agreement.” So could NDNU potentially have a softball field? “If we tried digging out a softball field on the Lacrosse Field it wouldn’t workout because there are no lights.”
“Lets say our players make it to the NCAA playoff’s they wouldn’t be able to use Notre Dame High School’s softball field because it doesn’t have to the right measurements to be an official softball field,” said Doody. As of 2017, there are no plans to build a new softball field on the NDNU campus.