By Teresa Tonkin
SC Staff Writer
As anticipation for the 2015 softball season at ESU grows, the Warriors are excited to hit the field again. ESU’s softball team was recently picked eighth in a preseason PSAC East softball poll.
The Warriors will kick things off on February 20 by traveling to Greeneville, Tennessee to play five games at the Tusculum Pioneer Classic.
Following the Classic, the Warriors will travel to Shepherdstown, West Virginia and then to Bowie, Maryland for a pair of doubleheaders before returning home to ESU to play Wilmington, Delaware’s Goldey-Beacom College.
The Warriors are headlined by three All-PSAC East players. They are senior first baseman Cara McNeil, sophomore pitcher Rachael Liguori, and junior pitcher Allison Mende.
Last season, McNeil hit 0.328 with a 0.466 slugging percentage. She had 29 RBI and scored 18 runs.
Southpaw pitcher Liguori posted a 3.60 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 24 games with 7 complete games and 1 shutout.
Bergen county, New Jersey resident Allison Mende was 4-4 with a 4.33 ERA in 17 games.
The trio will be joined by senior second baseman Jamie Smith, junior outfielder Sierra Wagner, junior third baseman Haley Thomas, senior outfielder Kasey Meckes, and sophomore shortstop Rae Holden.
Woods was a standout for the Warriors batting 0.302 with 11 RBI and 13 runs scored. Wagner was the 2013 PSAC East Freshman of the Year.
In addition to veteran pitchers Liguori and Mende, junior pitcher Amanda Carlin will be returning to the team.
In total, the Warriors will have three veteran pitchers and seven offensive starters back from last year’s team.
This year marks skipper Jill Fuduric’s ninth season as head coach of the softball team.
ESU finished last season with a 14-29 record. The Warriors were 9-19 in the PSAC. The Warriors will be seeking their first winning season since 2007.
ESU’s first conference game is against Lock Haven on March 20.
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