Athletics

PBSC athletics adds women’s soccer, discontinues softball

Palm Beach State College leadership has made the decision to add a women’s soccer program and discontinue the College’s softball team.

The women’s soccer team will begin to play in the fall of 2021, and PBSC looks to hire a coach as soon as possible in order to begin recruiting for that season.

“We are extremely excited to be adding women’s soccer to our athletic programs,” said Palm Beach State President Ava L. Parker, J.D. “This allows us to engage with our community in new ways and continue to impact our area with new and exciting offerings.”

Over the last 10 years, participation in high school girls’ soccer has outpaced softball, and that trend has also been seen on Palm Beach State campuses. The soccer club has had record amounts of participation, with over 100 participants in the last year and on-the-field successes in the local Beaches Adult Soccer League. The club, which began in 2012, has grown to include students from multiple PBSC campuses.

By adding a women’s soccer program, the College will be able to increase the diversity of its athletics offerings, provide a new outlet for student life, and give the community an opportunity to connect with the College through the world’s most popular sport.

In order to provide this new program, the College leadership made the difficult decision to close the softball program at the end of the 2020 season. Softball at PBSC has a proud history and will leave a lasting legacy of success, sportsmanship and academic excellence.

“We are committed to the success of our student athletes both on and off the playing field.  As we make this change, we will stay dedicated to all of our teams in their academic and athletic endeavors,” said PBSC Athletics Director Tom Seitz.

Palm Beach State College is a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA), which has more than 525 member schools, and is also part of the Florida College System Activities Association (FCSAA), which is the governing body for state college athletics in Florida. PBSC has five varsity teams competing in the FCSAA and NJCAA Region 8, which include baseball, men’s and women’s basketball and women’s volleyball.

For more information on Palm Beach State Panthers athletics, visit www.PBSCPanthers.com.

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16 comments on “PBSC athletics adds women’s soccer, discontinues softball”

  1. I’m sorry, but this just really sucks! How can you justify axing the softball team? It can’t cost much for a few bus trips to play some away games every year. Couldn’t we just reduce the number of away games to save money? Our softball team has been national champions more than once. Crystl Bustos, a former PBSC softball team member, was a U.S. softball team Olympian. I think it’s a terrible decision to get rid of softball at PBSC. I’m going to be lost without a chance to interact with the team members nearly every day at practice and to cheer for them at nearly every game. Bad move, PBSC!

  2. I’m totally disappointed in PBSC decision on discontinuing PBSC women softball team. This decision is not in alignment with PBSC mission statement: “provide student-centered learning experiences that transform lives and strengthen our community.” And the community PBSC claims to strengthen should include various PBSC athletic programs and their students. I’m not sure if this decision is best for the “student-centered learning experiences”.

  3. This is ridiculous. Why not both? Any other sport have multiple championships, like the softball team? What about the legacy of the great John Anderson. This is a sad day for women’s sports at this school

  4. I’m saddened and shocked by this news. As a PBSC alum, the fact that the president is making the changes she is, not just in athletics, is hugely disappointing. Instead of reevaluating and adjusting and reallocating resources they already have, they are cutting a program that has given so many women amazing opportunities.

  5. Bad decision.
    There is a history of excellence in women’s softball, at PBSC that should be upheld.
    Many players continue their sport, into recreational teams, & into old age,
    In coed teams, etc.
    Add soccer, keep softball.
    The importance of exercise, team play, life skills, cannot be overstated.

  6. I have to agree with all of the other comments I have seen so far. There surely must be some place in the budget where funds can be reallocated to an extent which will be sufficient to continue to fund an existing softball program which already has an excellent field and all the equipment that it needs. New uniforms aren’t something that we have to have all that often. The number of away games can be reduced to save on travel costs. More travel-team tournaments can be hosted at John Anderson Field, with revenue from those helping to fund the coaching costs. Please don’t eliminate softball!

    1. The new president has made it so incredibly hard for outsiders to rent any of the PBSC facilities. They had a theatre generating enormous amounts of revenue and she no longer allows it to be rented when the college is open or on weekends, (as well as allowed substantial increase in cost to rent) so a ton of clients have been forced to move elsewhere. I’m pretty sure she is trying to sink any program not directly tied to a degree program. She is sinking PBSC and fast. It’s the reason I left PBSC as an employee after 13 years.

  7. We need to keep Softball and continue the proud tradition! Revenue from Women’s Soccer could support both programs. This decision seems to be a violation of Title IX. Does not make sense to have a fairly new softball facility only to discontinue the sport now.

    1. I absolutely agree with you, Brent! Frankly, I’m doubtful that it would be incredibly expensive to continue the softball team as a sport when the facilities and equipment are already in place. Surely, the budget could be tightened a bit to reduce waste in some other areas and increase revenue in others so that softball would not have to be sacrificed.

  8. Yesterday afternoon, I drove to Eastern Florida State College in Melbourne to watch the second game of the PBSC Softball Team’s doubleheader against EFSC. What a wonderful, top-notch facility they have there! The seating is a large, raised section of bleachers that fans around toward first and third base from behind the plate, with aluminum flooring that prevents litter from falling on the ground. Behind the seating is a large building with locker rooms specifically for the softball teams, and large restrooms for the public. It’s obvious how much Eastern Florida State College values and promotes its softball team as an integral part of the college. It saddens me that Palm Beach State College, with two former national champion teams, does not have anything close to the same level of appreciation for its softball program.

  9. it’s a really good idea that you guys are finally going to include women’s soccer at PBSC, but why is it going to take so long to begin ? I thought it was going to begin this 2019 fall season

  10. It’s a sad day in women sports, It’s just amazing me that as a coach we push our players to strive for greatness, but yet it’s getting harder and harder for players to achieve there goal because decision like this one pushes them away. This community should not tolerate this, what’s next?

    1. Marc, as far as your question, “What’s next?” goes, it’s been my experience that institutions which cut back on athletics often look to the arts as the next thing to cut, and vice versa. Cutting either one goes squarely against the Platonian ideal of educating the whole person–mind, spirit, and body. Even if I weren’t a member of the PBSC music faculty, I would still be complaining about the elimination of softball here, but as both a softball fan and a member of the arts community, I find this decision troubling on both fronts.

      1. You bring up a good point. Arts are usually next on the chopping block. We should be expanding, not eliminating

  11. It was great to see the fan support of our softball team at “Sophomore Day” on Monday, when we played our last home games, bringing the season to a close. Fans and team members decorated the bleachers with ribbons and bows, and chalk drawings in honor of the sophomores had been made on the sidewalks. Unfortunately, due to a rehearsal that evening, I couldn’t stay past 6:00 for the sophomore recognition ceremony between the two games, but I loved it that the sophomores asked me to pose on the field with them for a photo prior to the game. It was enjoyable meeting or renewing acquaintances with the players’ parents. I wish some of our administrators had been there to see how much this day meant to so many people. It’s a real shame that the College wants to end wonderful moments like these! Can’t we find one or two wealthy donors who want to make sure we keep our softball tradition alive?

  12. As a former PBSC softball player and part of the 1996 National Champions Softball team, this decision has really saddened me. I have always been so proud to say that I was part of that team that went with only 1 loss that 1996 year. Softball is still a very big sport and continues to show that people want to watch it. ESPN now plays the NCAA playoffs and World Series in Softball and has been for the last several years. Softball in Florida has been huge. The Florida Gators won the world series back to back years in 2014 and 2015 and Florida State is now the current world series champions. This decision is just heart breaking. I can no longer go back to where I played and support the current team. I truly hope that this decision will be reconsidered. A lot of schools have both soccer and softball.

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