Softball Opens 2013 Season on Friday vs. Wright State, #17 Texas A&M
Feb. 7, 2013
The 49er softball team, reigning Big West Champions, kick off the 2013 season this weekend as they head to UCLA to play in the Stacy Winsberg Memorial Tournament. The 49ers face Wright State at 11:30 am on Friday, followed by #17 Texas A&M. On Sunday, they will play Cal State Bakersfield at 2:00 pm.
2013 Season Outlook
Last year the 49ers won the Big West title and played in the Tempe Regional of the NCAA Tournament. Postseason play is always a goal for Head Coach Kim Sowder's teams, so returning to the NCAA field this May will also be a focus for the squad.
The 49ers are playing a tough preseason schedule which includes seven teams which are ranked in the top 25 poll. "We have to play a tough schedule in order to become a better team and give ourselves the best opportunity to compete in the postseason," said Sowder.
"This team has a lot of depth and experience and I am very pleased with our preparation and our effort up to this point. We are ready to start the season and be tested."
The 49ers open the season at UCLA with the Stacy Winsberg Memorial Tournament where they will take on Wright State, Texas A&M and Cal State Bakersfield.
Nalani St. Germain will start the season at first base. She is one of the team's most versatile athlete that can play many positions and will likely be in a few different spots throughout the season. St. Germain has been one of LBSU's most clutch hitters over the past three years. She is a great leader by example and has had a very strong fall season. Junior, Loni Tyler and Tennessee transfer Ashley Holmes will also see time at first base. All three have had a really good off-season.
At second base is Cya Neal. After a solid 2012 season both offensively and defensively, she looks to continue to be a leader on the infield for the 49ers.
Shayna Kimbrough returns to the short stop position after doing a solid job as a freshman. She will also be in the leadoff position on the offense. Her consistent effort and great attitude everyday are a coaches dream.
Hannah De Gaetano did a good job at third base last year after moving in from the outfield the year before. Having the entire fall to train at third base has helped her to increase her range and become even more comfortable at the hot corner. Hannah has been one of the team's most consistent bats for the past two years and the 49ers will look for her to continue to be a leader on the offense this year.
"This is a very versatile team with a lot of great athletes that can be moved around if needed," noted Sowder. "I have been very happy with the leadership and energy we have had up to this point. Now it is time to go put it to the test."
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