CONWAY, S.C. - The Coastal Carolina University softball team concluded its 2008 Fall schedule this past weekend, finishing the slate with a 3-1 record in four home contests.
The squad took on College of Charleston at Coastal Carolina Softball Field on Sept. 28, and defeated the Cougars 9-4 in game one of the doubleheader. The Chants dropped the second game 7-1.
On Oct. 5, the Chanticleers hosted the UNC-Pembroke Braves. The day featured an offensive explosion, as the Chants downed Pembroke 13-0 in game one and 2-1 in the second contest to sweep the doubleheader. In all, Coastal Carolina totaled 15 runs on 19 hits on the day.
Senior first baseman Brittany Birnbaum (Chino, Calif./Ayala), freshman shortstop Sarah Maples (Pasadena, Texas/Deer Park), and sophomore Michelle Evans (Upland, Calif./Upland)led the offensive charge in the preseason.Birnbaum was 6-for-12 for an even .500 batting average with a double, three walks and three runs scored. The freshman Maples hit 6-for-13 (.461) with two doubles and three runs scored, while Evans was 5-for-11 (.454) with a home-run, double and three runs scored.
Junior hurler Ashley Frederick (Lusby, Md./Patuxent) performed well in the circle for the Chants, tossing seven innings while striking out six batters and allowing only one run. Sophomore transfer Katelin Edwards (Greer, S.C./Byrnes (NewberryCollege)) was superb in game one against UNC-Pembroke, as she pitched four innings, struck out five Braves and allowed one hit.
“Our pitching is light years ahead of where it was last year,” stated 23rd year Head Coach Jess Dannelly. “The fact that we only allowed eight hits and three walks in 14 innings is excellent. Ashley (Frederick) did her usual good job on the mound, and if Katelin Edwards can throw like she did against Pembroke during the regular season, we could win a lot of games this year.”
The Chants will continue weight training and resume with individual workouts, something that Dannelly says will have a big part in the upcoming season.
“Physically, we are in great shape, and that can be attributed directly to Associate Head Coach Megan Matthews Buning,” Dannelly remarked. “She is really running the girls hard, and I think that will pay off when the season rolls around.”
Coastal Carolina opens the 2009 campaign on Feb. 13. The Chants will be tested right off the bat, as they travel to the University of Florida/Lipton Invitational which includes two 2008 NCAA Tournament qualifiers in Florida and Georgia Tech.