2012 Olivet College Softball Preview
As the Olivet College softball team begins its final preparations for the 2012 season, the Comets are focused on putting last season behind them. A year ago, Olivet got off to a fast start with a 9-3 record during its spring break trip. Upon returning home to Michigan, the Comets finished its northern schedule with five wins to finish the year with a 14-21 overall record.
PITCHERS: Senior co-captain Rachel Cook (Traverse City/Central) returns as the ace of the pitching staff, hoping to end her collegiate career the way it began instead of the middle two years. As a freshman in 2009, she won 11 games, while over the last two seasons, she won only four games. The other two pitchers on the team are freshmen Jessica Duell (Ionia) and Nicole McCoy (Detroit/Mumford).
CATCHERS: Senior co-captain Christine Daub (Hudson) is back for her final season of collegiate softball. After a stellar junior season, she was off to a fast start in 2011 and then suffered a season-ending foot injury in the sixth game. In 2010, Daub started every game behind the plate and had a .323 batting average to go along with 30 hits, 21 runs scored and 16 RBI. She also broke Olivet's single-season fielding percentage record at .994 with only one error in 173 chances.
INFIELD: For the majority of the games last year, senior Brooke Coshow (Niles/Brandywine) started in place of Daub at catcher, but returns to the infield this season. She had a breakout 2011 season after transferring from Lake Michigan College. Coshow was second on the team with a .343 batting average, and led the team in almost every other offensive category: runs scored (27), hits (34), home runs (7), RBI (28), slugging percentage (.606) and on-base percentage (.435).
Sophomore Lauren Lenard (Dimondale/Lansing Catholic) is back after leading the team with a .356 batting average during her freshman campaign. She is going to get an opportunity to play first base. Junior captain Lindsey Maas (Pinckney) started 31-of-32 games played last year at third base and is the favorite for that starting spot this year. She has a career .287 batting average, including a .315 clip last year. Sophomore Sarah Mecham (Eaton Rapids) is another returning infielder.
Juniors Allison Iuelle (Kentwood/Kelloggsville) and Marlene Packer (Grand Rapids/Creston) played at Grand Rapids Community College before transferring to Olivet for the 2012 season. Both had batting averages higher than .300 for the Raiders, with Iuelle hitting 10 home runs during the 2011 season. Look for Packer to play in the infield, while Iuelle could play in either the infield or outfield.
OUTFIELD: Junior Ciara Santos (Lansing/Everett) leads the group of returning outfielders. She had a higher batting average during her freshman season but last season, her other stats were higher. Overall in two years, Santos has a .300 batting average along with 24 runs scored, 39 hits, five doubles, five home runs and 28 RBI.
Sophomores Terri Hurosky (Nashville/Maple Valley) and Alyssa Nielsen (Greenville) each started 26 games in 2011 and finished with nearly identical batting averages at .294 and .291, respectively. Junior Ali Lund (Owosso) returns for her junior season. She has played in 11 games over the last two years and scored seven runs, while collecting six hits in 19 at-bats for a .316 batting average.
Sophomore Mary Lamp (Alpena) joins the team this season. She has played two years of soccer, and the Comets look to utilize her speed on the base paths in the outfield and as a pinch runner.
SCHEDULE: For the eighth straight season, Olivet will open its season with 12 games at the Gene Cusic Classic in Fort Myers, Fla. The Comets have had a lot of success in Florida, compiling a 53-23 record over the last seven years.
Upon returning home, Olivet will play four non-conference doubleheaders, including three at home, before opening Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association play April 5 at Kalamazoo College. The Comets' first home league doubleheader is April 11 against Adrian College.