New Coach, New Era Set To Begin In Logger Softball
A new era begins this weekend for the Puget Sound softball team when it takes the field for the first time. Four seniors return to lead the Loggers on the field but newcomers will also play a huge role in filling out the lineup card all season long.
The 2013 season will be the first for head coach Kellyn Tate. Her group of four seniors will help Tate lead the program through the beginning of a rebuilding process in one of the toughest conferences in the nation.
"The team has been working hard the past month and we're looking forward to competing against a team other than ourselves," said head coach Kellyn Tate. "We are excited to begin a new chapter in Logger softball with some tough competition at the Northwest Cup to help prepare us for conference play."
Amy Schmeckpeper will make the move from third base to catcher for her senior campaign to lead the Loggers throughout the year. Last season, she had an on-base percentage of .384, which is tops among all returners. She drew a team-high 13 walks while smacking four extra base hits, including one homer.
Senior Brianna Huber will return to the infield to finish out her career. She hit a pair of homers last year, which is also tops among the group of returners. Sophomore Marissa Jeffers will also return at first and most likely toward the middle of the lineup. Jeffers showed some signs of power last year as over half of her hits went for extra bases and she drove in eight runs.
Junior Jenica Holt's .248 batting average from 2012 is the tops among returners as she will roam the outfield again and look to solidfy a spot near the top of the lineup card. She also hit out one homer last year and drove in eight runs. Senior Tahni Arndt will join her in the outfield.
The freshman class will also play a huge role on the Loggers' squad this year with a smaller roster size calling for the newcomers to make an immediate impact. Most noticeably, the Loggers will have a couple of new arms in the circle with all three pitchers from 2012 graduating last year.
Senior Shannon Reed will look to eat up some innings. She saw limited time last year in the field due to injury but is healthy now and ready to make an impact. Freshman Megan Campbell will also see some major time in the circle.
The Loggers were picked to finish eighth in the NWC's preseason poll. Last year, the Loggers finished in a tie for seventh in a tough NWC.
First pitch for the 2013 season is set for Saturday at 1 p.m. when the Loggers take on the College of Idaho in the Northwest Cup.