Steve Vail

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Minnesotan Named ISC UIC

Monday, January 7th, 2019

ISC Press Release
Dec. 19, 2018

The International Softball Congress is pleased to announce the appointment of Steve Vail of Cottage Grove, Minn. as ISC Umpire-in-Chief.

Steve is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin River Falls where he played football and baseball. While at River Falls he started officiating under the direction of Donald Page.

  • He has umpired and officiated football, basketball, baseball and fast pitch softball for the past 54 years.
  • Officiating is not a job to Steve , it is a passion, His umpiring has taken him all over the US, Canada and other parts of the world.

    Steve is looking forward for the opportunity of being the UIC for the ISC allowing him to remain in an active roll with fast pitch softball at the highest level in the world.

    **Visit the ISC website at: ISC Fastpitch**

    No show leads umpire Cliff Whitson into men’s fastpitch

    Thursday, August 10th, 2017

    WHITE BEAR LAKE, Minn. – An umpire missed an assignment and suddenly Cliff Whitson found himself crouched behind home plate with his nerves rattling and knees knocking.

    “In 1989 I had just finished umpiring a junior varsity softball game when I got a call that an umpire didn’t show up for a men’s fastpitch game at Dunning Field,” recalled Whitson.

    So he said, sure, he could fill in. But the game wasn’t quite what he expected. For the two ball clubs Whitson would arbiter weren’t your run-of-the-mill league teams.

    Click to continue reading “No show leads umpire Cliff Whitson into men’s fastpitch”

    35th Annual Chopper’s Hollywood Tournament

    Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

    WATERTOWN, Minn. – Chopper’s Hollywood Men’s Fastpitch Tournament is one of the longest running men’s fastpitch tournaments in Minnesota.

    This weekend, July 12-13, marks the 35th consecutive year the popular tournament will be held at the Hollywood Sports Complex near Watertown.

    Eight teams are competing in two pools, with a single elimination format on Sunday to crown a champion.

    Click to continue reading “35th Annual Chopper’s Hollywood Tournament”

    Only the best umpires make the calls in the Wanderoos

    Friday, August 3rd, 2012


    2009 ISC World Tournament umpires include, front row, from left, Leon Watson, Serge Laflamne, Paul Baier, Daryl Helmer, Gary Schmit. Back row, from left, Bruce Bierman, Roger Cheyne, Chris Lamer, Mike Clark, Jay McGivern, Ed Otterman and Les Novak. Contributed photo, ISC.

    “…for us umpires and Deputy UIC for the ISC, Les Novak, this is better known as the Wanderoos World Invitational.” – Gary Johnston

    WANDEROOS, WI – Gary Johnston has traveled near and far umpiring men’s fastpitch softball: from small towns hosting lower-division tournaments to the sport’s premiere event – the ISC World Tournament.

    This weekend (Aug. 3-5), Johnston, along with Roger Cheyne, Mark MacFarlane and Rob Durand, will be making the calls on the ball diamond at the Wanderoos Area Lions Club Men’s Fastpitch Tournament.

    All three officials come with decades of experience and have umpired at the highest levels.

    So why umpire in Wanderoos, a small town about 50 miles northeast of St. Paul, Minnesota? Part of it is preparation for the crew’s upcoming work in both the World Tournament and NAFA World Series. But for Johnston, it’s far more personal.

    “I have had the pleasure of umpiring that tournament for many years now,” he said. “Part of the charm of the tournament is that it is a one-field tournament and the field itself is a throwback.

    Click to continue reading “Only the best umpires make the calls in the Wanderoos”