After a slow start at the Big Red tournament in Nebraska, the CSU softball team brings its four-game winning streak home this weekend, looking to finish the fall season winning nine consecutive games.
“The team is playing very well, we’re hitting the ball and really coming together on defense,” said head coach Mary Yori. “A lot of people are seeing action, so we’re getting a chance to see what’s going to work this spring.” This weekend marks the end of a successful fall campaign, but before the Rams gear up for off-season training they’ll face stiff Division II competition at the Triple Crown tournament at Ram field.
“Because they are Division II schools we expect to win this weekend, but we certainly are not going to overlook any of our opponents,” Yori said.
The Rams first outing of the fall season was against Big 12 powerhouse Nebraska in Lincoln, where the team blew an early lead and fell to the Cornhuskers. But since that doubleheader loss to Nebraska, the Rams are the hottest team on campus – having outscored opponents 36-2, including two back-to-back shutouts over Northern Colorado.
“Our girls have been hitting the ball real well this fall, and our pitching staff has looked great,” Yori said. “We’ve been trying to get early leads so that we can throw in some of the new players and get a good look at the team and so far we’ve been able to do that”
The Rams have been led this fall by returning MWC player of the year Steph Roberts, along with talented newcomers Brittany Huerta, Jess Strickland and sophomore transfer Rochelle Padeway.
“Brittany has gotten of to an incredible start, she’s homered twice this season and has had a hot bat all fall,” Yori said. “She should be looking at a solid spot on the spring lineup.”
Questions about third base seem to have been answered through Padeway, while returning sophomore pitcher Jaycee Wood has had a great off-season and should be a top pitcher come spring.
“The team is really looking strong, the girls are playing great team defense and the pitching has been coming along better than expected,” Yori said. “We lost our first two (games), but considering it was our first game, I think we did pretty well. This weekend we’ll hopefully be able to have somebody throw a complete game, something we’ve yet to accomplish this fall,”
Coming home the Rams now have the chance to close the fall season with a nine game win streak, something any team would love to carry into the spring.
“We expect to win all these games this weekend,” Yori said. “We’re a strong, talented team and we are playing very well together. I think we’re in for quite a year.”