OKLAHOMA CITY –– USA Softball is thrilled to announce that Oklahoma City, Okla. will serve as host for the 2022 USA Softball Junior Olympic (JO) Cup. The 14-Under division will kick off the competition on Wednesday, June 29 at the Softball Capital of the World® with the Championship Game slated for Monday, July 4. Scheduled to take place July 11-16, the 16-Under and 18-Under divisions will take the field the following week with games being played at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex (2801 NE 50th Street, Oklahoma City, OK) and Wildhorse Park (1201 N Mustang Rd., Mustang, OK). The two age divisions will share both sites before concluding the tournament at the Softball Capital of the World® where a 2022 Junior Olympic Champion will be crowned in their respective age divisions.
The USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex has played host to the best softball competitions in the world such as the NCAA Women’s College World Series (WCWS) and the USA Softball International Cup, in addition to hosting the 2020 U.S. Olympic Softball Team for an exhibition contest prior to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. With the sport of softball continuing to grow in the Oklahoma City area, the historic facility recently underwent a series of renovations, which added 4,000 seats to the USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium – OGE Energy Field to increase the overall capacity to 9,000 permanent seats. Additional renovations also added new restrooms, suites, and concessions stands to enhance the fan experience. The four-field complex is located in the heart of the OKC Adventure District, offering many nearby activities for all visitors.
Wildhorse Park has been home to various fast pitch and slow pitch events over the years including multiple USA Softball GOLD National Championships. The 158-acre park features walking and biking trails, two playgrounds, a pond, a dog park, three small pavilions, one large pavilion, six baseball fields, five softball fields, a soccer complex, and an aquatic facility. Also located in Wildhorse Park is the Mustang Town Center which houses the library, recreation center, senior center, and banquet facilities.
Created in 2015, the inaugural USA Softball JO Cup included a total of 32 teams competing in the 18-Under division and has since grown to include a 16-Under division the past six years (2016-2021) and 14-Under division the past four years (2018-2021). Coming to Oklahoma City for the first time since its creation, the 2022 JO Cup will include a total of 96 teams across the three divisions while featuring a five-game guarantee with three pool play games into double-elimination bracket play. A blind draw will be conducted for each bracket with protection given to the first and second-place finishers from the 2021 USA Softball JO Cup.
The 2021 JO Cup saw one Champion emerge from each age division in Columbus, Ga. with Atlanta Vipers 14U Harris taking the 14-Under division trophy with a 3-0 shutout win over Florida Impact Gold Ladd 06. In the 16-Under division, Hotshots Premier 2022 Alabama got down early in the Championship Game but fought back to defeat Ohio Hawks 16U National, 5-3. The final game of the week ended in dramatic fashion as LLG DPS Corn rallied from behind to clinch a 6-5 victory over Atlanta Vipers 18U-Holbrook, securing their second consecutive USA Softball JO Cup Championship.
In addition to facing some of the top competition in the country, the USA Softball JO Cup serves as an opportunity for evaluation by the USA Softball coaching staff and the Women’s National Team Selection Committee (WNTSC).