08/22/2017 3:58 PM -
Whiting, Ind. – Aug. 22, 2017 – While the 2018 Northwest Indiana Oilmen roster will begin to take shape in the coming weeks and months, the organization has cemented its communications team for the new season.
A trio of familiar faces will handle the team’s broadcasting, statistics, media relations and communications this season. The announcement is headlined by the return of Brandon Vickrey, who will lead the way as the Director of Communications and primary play-by-play broadcaster during the 2018 season after a one-year hiatus. This will be Vickrey’s sixth season with the team after a previous five-year stint that started in the team’s inaugural 2012 season and continued through the 2016 campaign.
“The experience, knowledge and passion for Oilmen baseball that Brandon brings to our organization is unparalleled,” Oilmen President Don Popravak said. “He was a fixture for the first five seasons of Oilmen baseball and we’re excited to welcome him back for the 2018 campaign.”
Vickrey will also continue his full-time role at Division-I Valparaiso University as an Assistant Director of Athletics for Media Relations. He is the primary media contact for Valpo football, women’s basketball, baseball, men’s soccer, men’s and women’s golf and men’s and women’s tennis.
“I made the decision to take the 2017 season off to gauge how much energy I would have left following a busy fall, winter and spring as a sports information director and determine whether or not it would be feasible to work a summer season as well,” Vickrey said. “When my spring baseball season ended and I started having summer nights and weekends off, that was an odd feeling. I belong at the ballpark and I love the Northwest Indiana Oilmen. I look forward to spending summer nights at beautiful Oil City Stadium surrounded by all of my friends from the organization in 2018 and beyond.”
The Oilmen have also announced the return of Director of Sports Information David Bork, who enters his fifth season with the team. Bork came on board in 2014 as an intern and was promoted after that season. He is planning to pursue a master’s degree at Purdue University Northwest, where he earned his bachelor’s degree and was a sports information student assistant.
“The Oilmen is a great place to gain valuable experience and it has helped me grow in my field for the last few years,” Bork said. “I’m glad to be back and see what next year’s team brings after having the best regular season in team history in 2017.”
Bork is in charge of official scoring for all home games, coordinating league statistics and assisting with content for the team and league’s website, including press releases, previews and recaps.
“It’s great news for the organization that David will be back for another season,” Vickrey said. “On several occasions I’ve referred to him as ‘my best friend in Oilmen baseball,’ and I mean it. Since 2014, there have been over a dozen color commentators sitting to my right during games at Oil City Stadium, but there’s only been one official scorer to my left. He’s always been my right-hand man when it comes to Oilmen baseball.”
In addition, the Oilmen have announced the return of Conor Fredland to the broadcasting and communications team for his second season. After serving as a broadcasting intern in 2017, Fredland has been promoted to the Assistant Director of Communications for 2018. He and Vickrey will compile game notes, scribe game stories and maintain NWIOilmen.com and the team’s social media accounts.
“I am extremely proud to say that I will be returning to the Oilmen broadcast booth,” Fredland said. “It was a great experience in 2017, and 2018 promises to bring more great memories and experience.”
Fredland will again serve as the color commentator and secondary play-by-play broadcaster on the Oilmen Broadcasting Network. He will occasionally fill in for Vickrey, who will miss several games due to conflicts with his role at Valpo and scheduled time off. Fredland is an undergraduate student at Western Illinois University, majoring in sports broadcasting.
“When I filled in as the play-by-play broadcaster for several games during the 2017 season, I was impressed by Conor’s eagerness to learn and improve and his appreciation of the opportunity to broadcast Oilmen games,” Vickrey said. “At that time, I already knew my return for the 2018 season was possible, and it quickly became clear that Conor was someone I’d like to have sitting next to me.”
The Oilmen are seeking a broadcasting intern for the 2018 season. College credit is available, and the opportunity will help the selected intern gain valuable experience in the sports broadcasting and media relations industry. The intern will have an on-air role in every home Oilmen broadcast, assist with pre- and postgame shows and will handle color commentary for select games. Those interested are encouraged to send their resume and cover letter to Brandon Vickrey at [email protected]