Softball team ready to get started

The IVCC Softball team traveled to Florida over spring break to start off their season.

The Eagles defeated West Virginia Wesleyan JV 7-6 in eight innings in their first game in Florida before dropping their next three games.

The softball team is searching to rebuild and repeat the similar success they had last season.

According to sophomore catcher TJ Chapman, “We will miss the girls from last season. They were great teammates and friends, but we still are a very talented team and have the potential to be just as good, if not better.”

The team lost seven total sophomores from last seasons’ roster.

One of the major losses was on the pitching mound. When asked about how the team’s pitching would be affected after losing a pitcher like Katie Nauman, sophomore first baseman Taylor Schmitt stated, “Katie was an incredible pitcher and leader on and off the field last year. Losing her of course is tough, but we do have a great rotation of four freshman pitchers this year that are all looking great. Having the numbers is always a good thing to have.”

In the 2014 season the team will be led by the four returning sophomores, TJ Chapman, Taylor Schmitt, Olivia Harcar, and Micky Fassino.

Last season, the team made it to the regional final and ultimately lost to Sauk Valley.

When asked how the captains can ensure that the team has similar success as last year, Schmitt said, “I expect the same amount of hard work and I hope we do make it as far as we did last year, if not further. Nationals are the ultimate goal and I think if the team chemistry is there like last year we have a chance at reaching that goal.”

Any playoff success starts in the regular season with conference competition.

When asked who the toughest competition in the conference would be, Chapman said, “I would expect Sauk Valley to be the toughest. They were a well-rounded team last year, and I know they have an incoming freshman pitcher who’s pretty good.”

Since this is a new year, however, all of the teams have new rosters. Schmitt said, “All of the competition was tough last year, so I expect nothing less this year.”

The Lady Eagles also have a challenge of having a very young team. Chapman said, “They (freshman) seem to be falling into their roles within the team and adapting to Cory’s coaching pretty smoothly.”

Schmitt added, “Like all new first year players we are learning together and working to build that team chemistry. I think we are all doing well becoming friends and adjusting to a new team.”

Building chemistry and building wins are at the front of the captains’ minds. As sophomores, they have seen what it takes to have a well-run team and now it’s their turn to grab the wheel.