Umpires Announced for the 2018 NECBL All-Star Game

Mahwah, NJ – July 23, 2018 – Joe Gravina (Johnston, RI) will serve as crew chief for the 2018 New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) All-Star Game, to be played Sunday, July 29 at Mackenzie Field, home of the Valley Blue Sox.

Gravina, in his second NECBL All-Star Game (2017), will be joined by three umpires making their debut. Ryan Benson (Gaylordsville, CT) will call balls and strikes, Johnathan Conrad (Wallingford, CT), and Steve Williams (Quincy, MA), who worked the 2018 NCAA Division III College World Series.

With a crew comprised of umpires who have taken different paths – NCAA and professional baseball – to this assignment, UCU Executive VP, Alex Skandalis believes this is representative of an organizational philosophy to embrace umpires cycling out of professional baseball, all highly trained, while prioritizing training and development of staff members who do not have a professional background.

Skandalis said,“We have a crew of Division I conference level umpires representing our vision in the NECBL’s signature event with three of them new to the league this year. We take immense pride in seeing Joe and Steve succeed and advance, having embraced our program, and have immense respect for the talented umpires like Johnathan and Ryan who exit minor league baseball and immediately make our staff better. I look forward to this crew complimenting the talented student-athletes on the NECBL All-Star Game stage.”

About United Collegiate Umpires

Founded in 2014, UCU supervises baseball conferences in Division I (America East, Ivy League, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Northeast Conference), Division III (Atlantic East, Empire 8, Liberty, NEAC, and SUNYAC), NJCAA Region III and XIX, Interstate Collegiate Baseball League, Metropolitan Collegiate Baseball League, New England Collegiate Baseball League, and the New York Collegiate Baseball League. Offering superior continuing umpire education, UCU has participated in the implementation of training programs throughout the country, including several presentations made as part of the NCAA Umpire Improvement Program.

About New England Collegiate Baseball League

The New England Collegiate Baseball League is a wooden bat college summer league fielding teams in all six New England states, with 13 organizations overall. Partially funded by Major League Baseball, the NECBL started to play in 1994 and has sent over 100 alumni to the Major Leagues. Visit

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