Softball Starts Season At B&G Properties Tournament In San Marcos, Texas

Jan. 29, 2002

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OREGON THIS WEEK The 2002 softball season begins this Friday when the Ducks head to the B&G Properties Tournament hosted by Southwest Texas State in San Marcos, Texas. The three-day tournament kicks off Friday morning at 10 a.m. when Oregon faces Houston and runs through Sunday.

Schedule of EventsFriday, Feb.1Oregon vs. Houston, 10:00 a.m.Oregon vs. Texas Tech, 2:00 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 2Oregon vs. Texas A&M Corpus Christi, 10:00 a.m.Oregon vs. No.17 Southwest Texas State, 2:00 p.m.

Sunday, Feb. 3Oregon vs. Texas Tech, 10:00 a.m.

HEAD COACH BRENT RINCON Begninning his first year as the head coach at the University of Oregon, Brent Rincon (0-0 overall, 0-0 Oregon) brings a wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm to the program. Originally coming to Oregon to serve as an assistant for the upcoming season, Rincon took over the program as interim head coach in the Fall of 2001 following the depature of previous head coach, Rick Gamez. Rincon has been involved in softball as both a high school coach and as a head coach of various elite ASA travel teams. A highly successful high school and ASA coach in Arizona, Rincon helped develop many players who went on to play at the Division I level. In addition to coaching in the high school and ASA ranks, Rincon was also selected to coach the Arizona High School All-Stars in 1996.

2001 SEASON REVIEW Oregon finished the 2001 season 28-40 overall, 1-20 Pacific-10 Conference. The Ducks return 11 letterwinners and five starters this season, including junior infielder Alyssa Laux, who was second on the team with a .353 batting average a year ago. As a team, Oregon hit .263 in 68 games played. The Ducks' lone conference win was a 4-0 shut out over then-No. 9 Arizona State April 1. Connie McMurren took a bulk of the load on the mound for Oregon, pitching160.1 innings and finishing 9-18 overall. Freshman pitcher Anissa Meashintubby was a bright addition to Oregon's pitching staff, leading the Ducks with a 3.75 ERA and compiling a 4-3 overall record.

2002 PREVIEW With a new coaching staff in place -- Rincon, along with pitching coach Jennifer Jaime, who won a Big 12 Championship as a player and two championships as a graduate assistant at University of Oklahoma, and Holly Smith, a three year letterwinner at Arizona State (1998-200) -- the Ducks are aiming to return to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in the past five years. In addition to the returning letterwinners, seven newcomers come onto the scene eager to make an immediate impact. With just five starters returning, Rincon says the incoming players will need to step up early to fill the voids left by the departure of senior Triawn Custer, juniors Missy Coe and Lisa Wangler and sophomore Kate Peterson.

RANKING THE COMPETITION The Ducks usually face their toughest competiton when the Pac-10 season opens, but this season, three of Oregon's preseason opponents are ranked in the Top 25 heading into the season - No. 13 Alabama, No. 14 Notre Dame and No. 17 Southwest Texas State. The Pac-10 holds the top three spots, with Arizona No. 1, UCLA No. 2 and Stanford No. 3. The rest of the Pac-10 ranks in at: No. 5 California, No. 8 Arizona State, No. 9 Washington, No. 18 Oregon State.

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