JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Oct. 17, 2012) – ETSU softball wrapped up its fall season last week after having six weeks of team practices and seven games.
Head ETSU softball coach Brad Irwin returns for a third season at the helm.
“We are excited about going into the spring now that we completed our fall season,” said Irwin. “I think as a whole we played with a little more passion, fight and competiveness which we have been stressing all fall. We are playing a little better as far as taking it to the opponent and being aggressive, which we have been preaching.”
The Buccaneers started the fall season with individual workouts that emphasized the fundamentals and being aggressive in all aspects of the game. The Bucs then used inter-squad scrimmages and situational drills to help prepare for their seven fall contests.
ETSU played doubleheaders against Walters State, Tusculum and Milligan, and squared off versus Mars Hill in a single game. In the Bucs’ seven games, ETSU had a mix veterans and newcomers step up and perform very well.
Freshman Jennine Duncan (Jonesborough, Tenn.) led the squad by going 7-for-13 for a .538 batting average and also slugged .615. Fellow freshman Samantha Carpenter (Forest City, N.C.) belted two home runs and led the team with a .800 slugging percentage and recorded a .333 batting average.
Nicole Fox (Peachtree City, Ga.), Whitley Hensley (Erwin, Tenn.), Casey Horner (Whitesburg, Tenn.), and Haley Thompson (Nicholson, Ga.) led the way for the returners. Hensley, a senior catcher, showed great leadership behind the dish, while batting .438 with a pair of doubles. The trio of sophomores, Fox, Horner, and Thompson recorded key hits in important situations. Thompson showed more pop in her bat compared to last season as she belted a pair home runs and slugged .706 with a .294 batting average. Fox looked sharp throughout the fall as she hit a solid .429 (6-for-14) after missing most of the 2012 season to a shoulder injury. Horner continued where she left off from the spring by slugging .667 and batting .400 with a home run and a double.
The Bucs’ pitching staff kept the opposition off-balance as returner Katie Wolff (LaGrange, Texas) and newcomers Elliana Cabrera (Hayden, Ariz.) and Samantha Harrell (Okeechobee, Fla.) showed great progress throughout the fall. All three pitchers seemed to really show their stuff by the last couple of games and should be three solid starters come February.
“We have a lot of work to do in the weight room between now and when we come back in January,” said Irwin. “Come January, we know there’s some work to be done in the cages and on the field, but I feel we have a pretty good base coming out of the fall.”
For more information on Buccaneer softball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the softball page.