Travel Softball

The Watchung Hills Wolverines travel softball program is designed for girls who want to play a more competitive brand of the game than they will generally see in recreation leagues.


The Wolverines travel softball program aims to:

  • Provide a positive and supportive atmosphere in which to engage in healthy athletic competition against peers with similar abilities.
  • Teach the fundamentals of softball.
  • Promote teamwork, self-confidence, pride in team, and a love for the game.
  • Foster good sportsmanship in victory and defeat.
  • Encourage players to cultivate friendships and have fun.
WBSI wolverine logo


The travel softball program is open to residents of Warren, Watchung, and Green Brook. Players from nearby towns may try out if their hometown does not have a travel softball program; however, players from Warren, Watchung, and Green Brook will generally be given priority. Players must participate in spring rec softball or middle school softball to be eligible for travel softball.

A player’s age group (8U, 10U, etc.) is based on her birth year. Age groups for the spring and summer 2023 seasons are as follows:

  • 14U - birth years 2008 & 2009
  • 12U - birth years 2010 & 2011
  • 10U - birth years 2012 & 2013
  • 8U - birth years 2014 to 2016

During the fall season, travel softball programs typically encourage players who are nearing completion of their time at a particular age group to “age up” to the level they will play in the upcoming spring/summer season.

For example, a current 12U player born in 2010 will age up to play 14U fall ball this year. Aging up in the fall gives players a chance to play in a less competitive season in order to get acclimated to the new rules for the higher level. While it is recommended that second year players age up in the fall, team placement may ultimately be based on the player’s skill level and team needs.

Commitment & Annual Schedule

Travel softball can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it requires a significant commitment from players, parents, and coaches. There are 4 seasons of travel softball: fall, winter, spring, and summer. Participation in all 4 seasons is highly encouraged.


  • Teams often compete in the USA Softball D2 Fall League. 
  • The 8-game regular season begins during the second week of September and is followed by a playoff tournament in mid/late October. 
  • Teams play games once or twice per week on weeknights and weekends. 14U plays mostly Sunday doubleheaders, with an occasional Thursday game; 12U plays Thursday and/or Saturday; 10U plays Friday and/or Saturday; 8U plays mostly Saturdays, with some Thursday or Friday games.
  • Most teams practice once a week.


  • Indoor winter training takes place once a week (often on weekends) from January to March.
  • Pitchers are encouraged to practice pitching once or twice a week. WBSI typically secures gym space for this purpose. Contact your coach for details.


  • Teams often compete in the USA Softball D2 Spring League. 
  • The 8-game regular season typically begins in early April and ends with a playoff tournament in mid-May.
  • Games take place on Sundays to avoid conflicts with rec softball games.



  • Teams often compete in the USA Softball D2 Parkway League.
  • The 10-game regular season begins during the second week of June and is followed by a playoff tournament in mid-July.
  • Games take place 2-3 times per week on weeknights only.
  • Teams often practice once a week.
  • Many teams participate in one or more weekend tournaments.

Occasional schedule changes due to weather and field availability are to be expected. Players and parents should plan to be flexible. When planning summer vacations we ask families to make a good faith effort to avoid missing playoff games in mid- to late-July. There are no games in August. Some teams, particularly those moving up in age level, may decide to practice occasionally during August.

If your daughter is not available to play during one or more seasons, please be sure to communicate this prior to tryouts. Players who miss a season are not guaranteed to be reunited with their original team.

Tryout & Selection Process

Open tryouts take place once a year in late July and/or early August. It is expected that selected players will remain with the same team for the entire year (fall to summer). Additional tryouts may take place prior to the spring and/or summer seasons if there are open roster spots.

Players’ hitting, fielding, and throwing skills will be impartially evaluated by coaches from other age groups and external evaluators. Coaches for a particular age group may facilitate the tryout, but will not evaluate players.

Players will be selected based on evaluation scores, head coach input regarding the player’s performance in previous seasons, commitment level (e.g., players who regularly attend games/practices and are willing to participate in all 4 seasons), attitude, and team needs (e.g., the player’s primary position). Previous participation in the travel program does not guarantee a roster spot.

Rosters are typically made up of 12 players. If enough player interest exists and there are a sufficient number of committed coaches, more than one team may be created at a particular age group. These teams are usually assembled by skill level to provide players the best opportunity to compete against peers with similar abilities and have a positive experience.

The travel softball program maintains the goal of including as many girls as possible, and as such, we seek to keep cuts to an absolute minimum.



  • Demonstrate good sportsmanship – win or lose. Appreciate the good play of our opponents and remain humble during shining moments.
  • Respect coaches, teammates, opponents, parents, and umpires. 
  • Be a team player and get along with your teammates.
  • Regularly attend practices and games and be on time.
  • Learn the rules of the game and play by them.
  • Hustle on defense, when running the bases, and on/off the field between innings.
  • Participate in spring rec or school softball.
  • Try your best.
  • Have fun!


  • Model good sportsmanship – win or lose.
  • Respect coaches, opponents, parents, and umpires.
  • If your daughter is unable to attend a game or practice, please provide advance notice. Good communication is needed to ensure that the team never forfeits a game or plays short-handed. 
  • Only coaches should deliver feedback about mistakes players make during games or practices. Parents should focus on supporting players and coaches. Part of being supportive is trusting that the players are trying their best and the coaches are making decisions that are in the best interests of the team.
  • If you have a concern, please talk to a coach at an appropriate time. Please remember that we are all volunteers and are doing this for the kids.
  • Review the Parent Code of Conduct.

Playing Time

Although both are played for fun, travel softball is not rec softball. All players will be given opportunities to bat and play the field; however, playing time at certain positions and lineup slots may be earned through performance, effort, and attitude demonstrated at practices and games.

Coaches have the right to limit a player's playing time due to lack of commitment to the team, which could include missing practices or games, or due to unsportsmanlike conduct.


The Watchung Hills travel program is part of WBSI, a non-profit, volunteer-based organization. Teams incur expenses such as league and tournament registration fees, softballs and other equipment, umpire fees, insurance, utilities, and groundskeeping costs. These expenses are divided equally.

Player dues for each travel season are approximately $125 for teams that participate in league play only. If your team chooses to participate in tournaments, the cost for each player is typically between $40-$70 per tournament. Winter workouts costs vary by the location chosen and frequency, and generally ranges from $175-$300 per player. The cost of the uniform (jersey, socks, and belt) is $60. Players may reuse their uniform.

If you have any questions, contact Alex Romero or Matt Barnas.