Softball struggles in conference play

With a current record of 4-12 overall and 4-6 in the conference, the UVa-Wise softball team continued to compete against conference opponents in the last half of March.

Currently, junior pitcher Kellie Way­caster leads the team with a batting average of .429, freshman catcher Bridget Henzel leads the team with 11 runs and junior out­fielder Mindy Combs leads the team with four home runs.

According to Waycaster there is some pressure to be successful this season after the team’s title winning season of 2014, and it’s going to take their experience and drive to get back to the conference champi­onship this season.

I think there’s a ton of pressure. Es­pecially from our parents, people around campus and returners. Everyone wants to see us succeed like we did last year if not better. Being a returner, I feel the pressure of it as well, just wanting to have that feel­ing again of being the best,” Waycaster said. “We have to know that this is going to be a rough road, but to set it aside and play like it’s our last game every game. We have to go into each game with confidence that we will walk away with a win if not two wins.”

Another returner, sophomore outfielder Sarah Beamer, thinks that the rough begin­nings of the season are coming to an end.

“I think the team can improve by con­tinuing to move forward and get better. While we have had a rough start, things are starting to mellow out for us and our puzzle is starting to finally come together,” Beamer said.

As of right now, the Cavaliers are ranked eighth in the conference with less than half of the scheduled games left to play.

According to Beamer the stint of bad weather did not have a negative of effect on the team’s momentum.

“During the two weeks of no school we still had lifting, conditioning, and prac­tices either working on footwork for infield and outfield or hitting drills,” she said. “I feel as if it did not affect us in any nega­tive way because we still worked hard and improved.”

The softball team is preparing to om­pete at home in a doubleheader against West Virginia Wesleyan College on Satur­day, April 11 at 1 p.m. as their season con­tinues to progress.

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