Kingsport to host opening round of NAIA Baseball National Championship

KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL)—The Model City will host the 2024 NAIA Baseball National Championship Opening Round.

Kingsport was chosen as one of 10 locations across the U.S. for the opening round.

According to Visit Kingsport, 46 teams will play in 10 cities, with the winner from each city advancing to the Avista-NAIA Baseball National Championship in Lewiston, Idaho.

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Bradley Hoover, the Director of Sports for Visit Kingsport, told News Channel 11 that NAIA teams who compete in the Kingsport bracket have seen success further into the tournament.

“We’ve actually had four teams that have come through and won the whole thing at the World Series,” Hoover said. “So we like to joke and say that the championship with the World Series, the path cuts through Kingsport in order to get there.”

Four teams will come to Kingsport May 13-16 for a double elimination tournament during the opening round. The tournament will be played at Hunter Wright Stadium.

According to Hoover, Visit Kingsport is excited for the NAIA teams to play on the new turf at the stadium.

  • Photo: WJHL
    Photo: WJHL
  • Photo: WJHL
    Photo: WJHL
  • Photo: WJHL
    Photo: WJHL

The competing teams include Tennessee Wesleyan, Columbia (Missouri), Webber International and Freed-Hardeman. A full schedule with streaming information can be found online.

Hoover said the tournament is a boon for the City of Kingsport and the surrounding area.

“It’s an excellent economic impact on our area,” he said. “We have the team staying at our hotels, eating at our restaurants. They’re supporting our local small businesses and things like that. So if you happen to see those guys out and about in the city, be sure to smile and thank them for coming to Kingsport.”

2024 marks the 13th consecutive year Kingsport has been a host city for the opening round of the championship.

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