Twenty-four teams of neurosurgeons from top medical institutions competed June 4th in Central Park at the 8th Annual Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament.
Endorsed by the American Association of Neurological Surgeons(AANS) and hosted by Columbia University, the event benefited brain tumor research via the Neurosurgery Research and Education Foundation (NREF) of the AANS.
This year’s competing Departments of Neurosurgery included Alabama, Albert Einstein, Barrow Neurological Institute, Colorado, Cornell / Memorial Sloan-Kettering, Dartmouth, Duke, Emory, Florida, Harvard, Hopkins, Miami, Mount Sinai, Northwestern, NYU, Penn, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Jefferson, Toronto, and Utah.
The playoff field included Cornell/MSK and Columbia from the New York division; Alabama and Emory from the South division, Barrow and Pittsburgh from the West division, and Penn and Harvard from the East division. The Final Four teams were Emory, Alabama, Barrow, and Penn. The Barrow claimed their second consecutive championship by beating Alabama in the finals.
The Annual Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament has rapidly evolved into an international competition, with Toronto joining the field in 2010. The first two championships were claimed by Columbia University in 2004 and 2005, while the University of Pennsylvania repeated their title runs in 2006 and 2007. Harvard followed by winning in convincing fashion during the 2008 tournament. Columbia won their third overall championship in 2009 and the Barrow has won in 2010 and 2011. The championship trophy, named “The J. Lawrence Pool Memorial Trophy” in honor of the former Columbia chairman, will be housed in Phoenix for another year.
For the eighth consecutive year, the Steinbrenner family and the New York Yankees have sponsored the tournament. Supported by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, this date has been declared “Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament Day” in the City of New York.
The Annual Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament has become a tradition within the neurosurgical community and represents the amiable competition, social camaraderie, and charitable nature within our field. In particular, the dedication of participating programs, particularly traveling teams, has been impressive.
Partnership with the American Association of Neurological Surgeons has been instrumental for transitioning from an institutional effort to an international initiative, with this collaboration allowing funding to support NREF neuro-oncology research fellowships.
The planning, coordinated and supervised without a hitch for the past 3 years by Greta Petrovic, has already begun for the games to continue next year in June 2012 for the 9th Annual Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament, with potentially an expanded field of 30+ teams across the US and Canada.
Check out this story about the event and its founder Dr. Ricardo Komotar in the Wall Street Journal: Softball and Charity on the Brain
Read our last article, Summer Brings Our 8th Annual Neurosurgery Charity Softball Tournament, to learn the origins of this international charity event.
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