CSU softball will be playing in the biggest tournament of its season this weekend.
The University of South Florida Under Armour Showcase will feature 20 teams playing on nine fields. The Rams head to Clearwater, Fla. today, and will play against Central Michigan at 3:30 p.m. and Maryland at 6 p.m.
The Rams are coming off a rough weekend, going 1-4 while hosting the Colorado State Classic. CSU gave up 60 runs in their four losses and will look to improve on a tough start to the season.
â€œItâ€™s been really difficult,â€ said first year CSU coach Jen Fisher. â€œIâ€™m proud of the way theyâ€™re pushing through it, keeping a good positive prospective on where weâ€™re at and what we need to keep doing.â€
Fisher said the team is staying together even in the tough times.
â€œTheyâ€™re encouraged by how they get along as a team,â€ Fisher said.
With a young team it can take time to see improvements and gain confidence. The fundamentals â€“â€“Â pitching and playing good defense â€“â€“Â will be areas of focus, Fisher said.
Freshmen have been important to the teamâ€™s success all season, both at the plate and in the pitching circle. Alysa Greckel is coming off a big offensive weekend at home where she hit five home runs in as many games.
â€œIt was needed,â€ said Greckel, who has emerged as one of CSUâ€™s biggest offensive threats. â€œIt felt good to help contribute to my team and get a win (against Santa Clara).â€
Greckel and the rest of the team have worked hard at making improvements in hopes they will show up on the field.
â€œI changed my swing a little bit mechanically and just got a better mental approach at the plate,â€ Greckel said. â€œI just started seeing the ball a little better.â€
CSU (4-15) continues play Saturday against the Universities of Massachusetts and Connecticut at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. On Sunday the Rams wrap up the Showcase at 10 a.m. when they take on Long Island University.
The Rams will remain in Clearwater for another week to play a double-header against Boston University on March 15, and Texas Tech University on March 17.
CSU will play in another tournament hosted by South Florida next weekend, playing five games from March 18 through 20.
Softball Beat Reporter Travis Todd can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org._
- Tournament: University of South Florida Under Armour Showcase
- Where: Clearwater, Florida.
- When: Today, Saturday and Sunday