James Tencza has been involved in sixteen-inch softball as a player and coach for forty-five years. He started playing softball in 1964 at McKinley Park on Chicago’s South Side. He also played at Mark White Park (now McGuane Park). He started out playing centerfield but switched to shortstop after a knee injury.
After his fifth knee injury on the same knee, he decided to give up playing and switched to coaching in 1985 with Mick Ballestri. During his career, teams he played on or coached racked-up three ASA “A” National second place finishes with the Scooters in 1995 and Crush in 2001. Flash took second in the ASA Majors in 2004. His teams won two ASA Major titles – 2008 and 2009 with Flashback. In 2011 Flashback won the SSA title. In 2010 they took second in the ASA Majors, losing to Windy City.
His teams were equally successful in the Forest Glove No-Glove Nationals. Crush was runner-up in 2001 and Maxim took second in 2006. Flash won the title in 2005. Flashback won the No-Glove title three years-in-a-row from 2010 to 2012.
His Chicago Police Department team won the City of Chicago championship more than twenty times.