Softball Begins Title Defense Preparations
Sept. 17, 2009
SEATTLE - It took the Washington softball program 17 years to finally win that first coveted National Championship, but with the team reporting to fall camp this week, there are no plans to wait another 17 years to put up another banner in Husky Softball Stadium.
With 12 players returning from that history-making club in 2009, including National Player of the Year and Women's College World Series MVP Danielle Lawrie, the Huskies will be re-loading for the upcoming season rather than rebuilding despite the loss of seven seniors.
Gone are All-American table setter Ashley Charters, quiet leader and steady force Alicia Blake, along with the sluggers Lauren Greer and Ashlyn Watson. But young stars emerged in the 2009 postseason such as sophomores Kimi Pohlman and Niki Williams and juniors Morgan Stuart and Jenn Salling, who have a hunger to keep the championship trophy on the shores of Lake Washington.
The Huskies also look forward to breaking in a large and talented freshman class, which includes six players. Local products Amanda Fitzsimmons, Baily Harris and Maggie Wagner, along with Californians Shawna Wright, Jerrin Faasua and Melanie Fagaly will put on the Purple and Gold this week for the first time as they look to fill some major shoes.
The team begins fall camp on Thursday with meetings, paperwork, physicals and other logistical requirements before trying on their new Nike uniforms. Following the fitting, the team will get their first physical work in as they take on a speed test with strength and conditioning coach Hans Straub.
Players will then finally hit the field for the first practice of the 2009-10 season at 3 p.m.
On Friday, freshmen get an introduction to the Husky weight room bright and early before team practice at 9:30 a.m. After a lunch break, the Huskies will hit the field in their uniforms for their first game action against Washington softball alumnae at 5:30 p.m. Old and new players alike will then come together for a barbeque at Husky Softball Field as they celebrate the program's first championship. More than 30 former players are expected to join in on the festivities (view alumni list here).
The weekend will be busy as the Huskies will be honored several times before and after the UW-USC football game (more information HERE) followed by the Cruise with the Champions on Sunday. For more information on Cruise with the Champions, click here.
The freshmen are then lucky enough to move into their dorm rooms on Monday before workouts, yoga, practice and meetings later in the day. Two-a-day practices take place all week before the team plays its first games on Saturday, Sept. 26, with a doubleheader against Boise State at Carlon Park in Selah, Wash. The team will then host a clinic at Carlon Park on Sunday.Practice resumes to a once-a-day schedule on Wednesday, Sept. 30 when classes finally start. UW then closes out the fall season when they host the Husky Softball Fall Classic, Oct. 2-4, featuring Seattle University, Lower Columbia College, Simon Fraser and Bellevue Community College.
Below is the complete Husky fall camp schedule:
Thu., Sept. 17 - Practice, 3 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 18 - Practice, 9-12:30; Alumni game - 5:30 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 19 - Football tailgate, The Zone ring ceremony, Halftime ceremony
Sun., Sept. 20 - Practice, Noon; Cruise with Champions, 4-6 p.m.
Mon., Sept 21 - Practice, 2 p.m.
Tue., Sept. 22 - Practice, 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Wed., Sept. 23 - Practice, 9 a.m. and Noon
Thu., Sept. 24 - Practice, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 25 - Travel to Yakima
Sat., Sept. 26 - Doubleheader vs. Boise State @ Carlon Park, Selah, WA
Sun., Sept. 27 - Clinic in Selah, 9 a.m.
Mon., Sept. 28 - Photo day
Tue., Sept. 29 - Practice, 1:30
Wed., Sept. 30 - Practice, 3 p.m.
Thu., Oct. 1 - Practice, 3 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 2 - Husky Softball Fall Classic
Sat., Oct. 3 - Husky Softball Fall Classic
Sun., Oct. 4 - Husky Softball Fall Classic