Weed High School graduate Darin Delgado is the head coach for an All-Star team that is preparing to face the USA Softball Women’s National Team in an exhibition doubleheader Thursday evening, July 13, at Raley Field in Sacramento.
Delgado is the associate head coach at American River College, where his sister Lisa is the head coach.
He called it “a real honor” to be selected by USA Softball Sacramento to coach the All-Star team, which he put together with mostly players who have ties to the Sacramento area and have played in college.
“It’s exciting and humbling,” Delgado said of “coaching some of the best players in the world and playing against some of the best.”
“USA Softball Sacramento is excited to welcome the best-of-the-best in women’s softball to Sacramento,” states program director Cassi Ponzo in a news release about the exhibition. “This event gives our community a chance to see softball played at the highest level by what could be future 2020 Olympians... all right here in our own backyard. With the added exclusive events such as the Player Camp and the VIP Meet & Greet, plus the chance to see so much of our local talent compete, this event will be fun for the whole family.”
Delgado said the name Sacramento Rush was chosen for his team via a contest on social media.
While recruiting players for the Rush, he said he started with players he coached on a top-notch travel team in the Sacramento area when his daughter Cara, now age 24, was playing.
One of those players is Stephanie Tofft, who went on to play at the University of Florida and was on the 2014 team there that won the national championship her senior year.
“I tried to find as many local players as possible so fans can see a local team – the most talented players from the area,” Delgado said. “Softball is very big in the Sacramento area. The players are excited to compete.”
The National team also features players from the Sacramento area, including Ali Aguilar of Orangevale, Ally Carda of Elk Grove, and Jessica Moore of Sutter.
Delgado said he initially got a call from USA Softball Sacramento to interview for the head coach position, which he saw as a great opportunity.
He said he’s been going non-stop ever since they chose him, and things started heating up this week as the 17 Rush players arrived from around the country to start practicing in preparation for Thursday’s games. The games are scheduled for 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. at Raley Field in West Sacramento. An autograph session with Team USA will follow. See more at: www.usasoftballsacramento.org.
Delgado said more than 5,000 people had signed up to attend the doubleheader as of Monday morning, and Raley Field can hold 14,000.
He will also be going to Oklahoma City later this summer to coach a 12 and under All-Star team in the USA Softball All-American Games.
A 1988 graduate of Weed High School, Delgado went on to play baseball at College of the Siskiyous and Chico State. He said he got involved in coaching softball more than 20 years ago, helping Lisa when she was the head coach at Butte College and he was in Chico.
“I fell in love with the game,” he said.
After coaching travel ball for several years, he again joined Lisa at American River, where she’s been the head coach since 2003.
Their parents are Bob and Adele Delgado of Weed.
Darin operates a Sports Academy that offers private instruction and camps, and he does software development. He said a learning management system he created is being used by 23 leagues and USA Softball Sacramento; and he’s been communicating with the president of USA Softball about the possibility of using it nation-wide.