From the Spring 2019 edition of the "Softball News"....
Royal Carlson, who spent his career playing in the Tri-River League and the Fargo/Moorhead league, was one of the three fast pitch veterans elected to the softball Hall of Fame at the Selection Committee’s Meeting on January 19, 2019 in Jamestown. Eleven members of the committee were present and voting and seven votes were required to be elected.
Royal Carlson lived in Wolverton, Minnesota but played softball in both the Tri-River League and the Fargo/Moorhead league. His career spanned 26 years and resulted in 490 wins as a pitcher against 190 losses. He played in Wolverton for 14 years and served as manager and general manager as well as league officer and state representative for the Tri-River league. Royal was lured into Fargo to pitch for Schmidt Beer in the Twin City League where he pitch for 12 years. One of the teams for which he pitched was Western Products which won the 1991 state tournament as well as the Regional in their division and went on to play in the National Tournament in Reno, Nevada.
In addition to Royal’s talent on the diamond, he was very active in the softball community helping host four National Tournaments in Fargo and one ISF World Tournament. Royal was a tireless worker devoting a remarkable amount of time to his work in promoting National Tournaments in Fargo. He also held the position of Secretary for Men’s Fast pitch for the state organization for 15 years and was the league Representative to NDASA for eleven years.
Jack Peterson of Moorhead played fast pitch softball in Fargo/Moorhead for 23 years retiring in 1993 with a lifetime batting average approximately in the range of .290 to 295. He was a gifted outfielder blessed with good speed and a strong, accurate arm. At the plate, Peterson had power but excelled at hitting the ball in the holes between fielders. Primarily an outfielder, he could and often did play any infield position and continued to produce as a clutch hitter. He played in 24 State Tournaments, playing on five championship teams as a player and one as a sponsor. His teams also went to six Class A Regional Tournaments and four Class B Nationals.
In addition to his playing career, Peterson also sponsored several teams in the Tri-River League and he served on the Board of Directors for the Fargo Fast Pitch league for three years.
Lyle Rader has been a registered softball umpire for 44 years and currently serves on the state umpire staff as the Deputy UIC for Southeastern North Dakota. While he umpires both slow pitch and fast pitch, his first love remains fast pitch which be started working in Minot. He has umpired in 24 National Tournaments and also umpired in approximately 50 state tournaments. He also serves as the Umpire in Chief for the Wahpeton Softball League and has been in that capacity for 20 years. He has obtained the Elite level of umpiring excellence and is regarded as the expert in fast pitch softball mechanics and rules knowledge. He has attended a number of National Umpire Clinics and is a member of the McQuade Tournament Hall of Fame. His mechanics have been described as “textbook” and his knowledge of the rules is second to none. He has also mentored a number of young umpires and continues to conduct Rules Clinics both locally and around the state.
Don Siverson of Fargo had a number of athletic achievements on his resume before he ever began playing fast pitch softball. He quarterbacked his high school team to 29 consecutive wins, was a three year starter on the basketball team, a pole vaulter and played baseball on three state Junior Legion tournaments. He also quarterbacked the NDSU Bison football teams which won four conference and two National titles.
After all of that, he decided to try his hand at fast pitch softball starting in 1968 and retiring in 1992. During that 24 year period, he played in 22 state tournaments, four regionals and three National Tournaments. His teams won state championships in 1975 and 1981 and advanced to Regional play in 1975, 1984, 1985 and 1986. He played in National tournaments in1986, 1988 and 1991. Siverson was regarded as one of the best defensive players on any team on which he played. He played third base and sometimes at first base but was actually a catcher who could and did play all positions when called on to do so. His career batting average was near .300 and he was an excellent teammate who was liked and respected by teammates and opponents alike.
Mike Swanson of Bismarck was nominated by a Hall of Fame member and endorsed by two other Hall of Fame members and Scott Brahos, the current Vice President of USA Softball of North Dakota. Swanson has played slow pitch softball for 22 years and is still active in the game. He has played with a number of Elite teams including Coaches Choice, Tharaldsons and Sperle Masonry. His stats at the Elite level include an approximate batting average of .650. He has played in 27 state tournaments including 15 state titles at the highest level of softball. His teams also did well at the National Level finishing in second place in Class B Nationals in 2003. His personal stats include being named National Homerun Champ in Class B National in 2003, 1st team All American in 2002 and again in 2004.
Almost as impressive as his playing ability is the kind of person Mike is on and off the field. He is well liked and respected by both teammates and opponents. The word “Ambassadore” of Softball is used often in referring to Swanson.