(Story reproduced with the kind permission of the PacWest Conference)
– PacWest conference sports news directors voted for Concordia, led by Ben Rosehartas the 2022 PacWest Sports Information Department of the Year, which is Concordia’s first time winning the award.
Rosehart has been at Concordia for four years and oversees the school’s sports information efforts for all 19 varsity sports and five club sports, the most of any PacWest school. He manages Concordia’s website and social media and plays a lead role in game day operations for all sporting events held at Concordia.
One of Rosehart’s greatest accomplishments over the past two years has been her role in hosting the Concordia Kickoff Classic in softball. For years, the Desert Stinger was the premier softball tournament in the West Region in the early weeks of the season, but in just two years, Concordia’s Kickoff Classic has become a destination tournament for teams from softball in February. In three days, Concordia successfully hosted 52 softball games featuring the top NCAA Division II teams in the West Region.
“Over the past four years, it’s been a privilege to work with Ben and see him perform at all the events he hosts,” said Jared Pine, director of sports communications for PacWest. “He is uniquely qualified to succeed in the position to which he has been called. Few people in this profession can match his can-do attitude, and I believe that is what it takes to succeed as the only full-time SID at a school with the most athletic programs in our conference. What he has accomplished in training his graduate assistants year after year is truly remarkable.
Rosehart did not achieve all of this without the help of her part-time assistants. Kara Vincitorio, Alex Kline, Zachary Fidel and Cayden Jones have all played an important role in the success of the sports information service.
“It is extremely humbling and gratifying to be recognized by your peers in this way,” Rosehart said. “I want to make sure to thank our Sports Information Assistant Kara Vincitorio and all of our graduate assistants as we have all worked tirelessly this year in Concordia’s sports information department to help us evolve in the way we promote our student-athletes and our teams. With all the sports we sponsor, it’s truly a team effort to serve our 24 programs which include over 550 student-athletes. We are very proud to see them succeed and to be able to share their stories and accomplishments.”
Vincitorio has been working part-time with Rosehart for years and primarily helps with volleyball, water polo and baseball beats. She was the starting libero for the Concordia women’s volleyball team that won the 2012 NAIA National Championship and still holds the school record for career digs. Concordia is also the only member of PacWest to offer a men’s volleyball program and a beach volleyball team in the spring.
Vincitorio and Concordia’s graduate assistants all help Rosehart in various ways with recording stats during CUI home games, writing story recaps, and posting content to social media including video clips, action plans , final score charts and milestones.
“Follower numbers on our social media platforms have grown by almost 20% in the past 18 months, and it’s not something that happens overnight,” Rosehart said. “It’s something the whole group is extremely proud to see come to fruition as we continue to evolve.”
With a strong background in graphic design, Kline helped Rosehart implement new strategies for the athletic department’s social media accounts and helped create dozens of graphic templates for online and on-campus promotions. The former Cal Poly Pomona catcher focused on hitting baseball and basketball while earning his MBA.
Fellow graduate assistants Fidel and Jones have also played a huge role in improving the quality and quantity of video content for CUI Athletics. Jones is a former CUI football player and has helped carry the torch for the football and athletics teams, while Fidel has mainly helped cover tennis, swimming and diving. Both will take on larger roles as they enter the second year of their master’s programs.
“We sometimes joke that it’s never a dull moment – there’s always a great story to discover, a new milestone to watch, or a highlight to share,” Rosehart added. “It’s pretty cool that we have a lot of school firsts and records to promote too since our school transitioned to the NCAA DII level just a few years ago.”
Concordia has hosted the NCAA West Regional in softball four times in the past five years, earning one of the region’s top two seeds each time. That’s the most a Western Region school has hosted a softball region since Concordia became eligible for the NCAA playoffs.
“I really enjoy working with the whole group that we have at Concordia and also with people from all of our schools throughout the conference,” Rosehart said. “I feel like every year we’ve gotten better in how we serve here at Concordia, and I’m so grateful to the league SIDs who have helped me out when I have random questions, like we all do from time to time.”
For the past five years, former CUI Sports Information Graduate Assistants have worked in the college athletic departments of Biola, St. Katherine and Lewis-Clark State College as well as the Los Angeles Sparks.