SALINA, Kan. -

After 17 years, the NJCAA Division 1 Women's Basketball National Championship is moving out of Salina.

The Salina Area Chamber of Commerce announced this morning that the NJCAA Tournament will be held in Salina in 2015, then it will move to Lubbock, Texas for the 2016-2018 tournaments.

“The NJCAA greatly appreciates the hard work and passion that the city of Salina, its volunteers and tournament director Tiffany Benien have put in to this championship over the last 17 years," said Mary Ellen Leicht, Executive Director of the NJCAA in a press release. "The decision to part ways was a difficult one and was not taken lightly by the Championship Events Committee.”

Salina has hosted the NJCAA Tournament since the 97-98 season.

“Certainly this is not the outcome we’d hoped for,” stated Tiffany Benien, Sports & Special Events Manager for the Chamber. “The Chamber, the Bicentennial Center, the business community and our dedicated volunteers – 250 strong - have supported this event whole-heartedly. It has been a great pleasure to work with the NJCAA, and we welcome the opportunity to continue that relationship as other opportunities arise.”

The National Championship will be held at the Salina Bicentennial Center from March 16-21, 2015.