MONMOUTH — Another season of softball is here, and the Western Oregon University softball team is ready for it.
Senior Kennedy Coy is excited for her final season with the team she has been part of for four years.
“The thing that I look forward to every season is building team chemistry, winning games, and making great memories along the way,” she said. “This may sound like a cliche answer, but my favorite part of being on this team is the people I play with and play for.”
The Wolves hope to build off of last year’s successes, which included competing at the National Collegiate Athletics Association Division II West Region tournament, where the team fell with a 5-0 loss to Concordia-Irvine. Coy looks back on that season fondly.
“Last season was one of the most successful ones that we have had in awhile,” she said. “We excelled in preseason and performed consistently well during our regular season, which is what gave us a shot at regionals.”
So what does the team need to do to build off of last year?
“By staying hungry and winning the games that we can,” Coy said. “That was the key to last year’s success.”
This year’s team is smaller than in years past, which has brought up challenges for the team so far.
“We have 18 people on the team including a handful that are internal rotation players,” Coy said. “Not being two-three deep in every position is a change for us from previous years. We also have a smaller pitching staff, but the pitchers that we do have work hard for us and get the job done.”
Of the many games the Wolves will play this season, there is one in particular that Coy said she is looking forward to.
“Our senior night,” she said. “This is my last year playing softball and I’ve been playing since I was 9 years old. We have such amazing, supportive fans, and I know they are all going to show up for that game. It’s going to be a bitter sweet, very special day.”
Opening play on Saturday with a doubleheader scheduled at Saint Martins, the Wolves fell 12-11 in 10 innings. The second game of the day was postponed because of weather.
On Sunday, at Central Washington University for a doubleheader, the Wolves split games, winning the first contest 10-6, but losing 8-4 to close out the day.
The Wolves have seven GNAC home games this year: Montana State University Billings March 13-14; Central Washington on April 4; Saint Martin’s on April 5; Western Washington April 10; and Concordia April 25.