SPORTS SHORTS: UNI athletics begin with ‘Kickoff’ event

CEDAR FALLS – The University of Northern Iowa will open the 2013-14 athletic year with the Panther Season Kickoff Aug. 22 at 5 p.m.

The event will start with a tailgate on the Eldon Miller Plaza with the voice of the UNI Panthers’ Gary Rima hosting his hour-long sports talk show On Press Row. Rima will interview UNI coaches and student-athletes on the plaza as fans enjoy complimentary hot dogs, potato chips and soft drinks courtesy of the Panther Scholarship Club. Food will be served from 5-6:30 p.m.

Panther fans can also watch the UNI football team take part in an intra-squad scrimmage starting at 6:45 p.m. Fans can stick around after the scrimmage for autographs from Panther players and coaches.

Season tickets for all Panther athletic events will be available for purchase at the event. Fans looking to purchase seats can enjoy a ‘Select-A-Seat’ program to view which seats are available for the upcoming season.

Men’s fastpitch hits Des Moines metro

DES MOINES – More than 120 men’s fastpitch softball teams from all over the United States and Canada will be in the Des Moines area in the coming days as the 21st annual North American Fastpitch Association World Series takes place from Aug. 7-18 in Des Moines, West Des Moines and Urbandale.

The 12-day NAFA World Series features top-ranked teams from the U.S. and Canada trying to claim a championship in five different divisions. Games will start at 5 p.m. Wednesday at three locations – Greater Des Moines Softball Complex in Des Moines, the Walker-Johnston Softball Complex in Urbandale and Raccoon River Park Softball Complex in West Des Moines.

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