Posted: Jan 23, 2019
ST. LOUIS - Westminster softball was predicted to finish first in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, earning seven first-place votes in a poll from the league's head coaches.
Greenville and Spalding also received first-place votes with Greenville earning 70 total points behind Westminster 78. Spalding and Fontbonne were both tied at 62 points to round out the top four.
The Blue Jays won the regular season for the second year in a row in 2018, falling in the SLIAC Tournament. This year, Westminster looks to secure the Tournament title as well with a strong base of players returning after losing just one senior to graduation.
Among the returners is Katie Price, the 2018 SLIAC Pitcher of the Year, who is returning for her junior season after a record sophomore year. In 2018, she set the season record for wins at Westminster with 14 and recorded five shutouts.
With solid returning pitching, Westminster also returns its best bats from a season ago, including the 2018 SLIAC Newcomer of the Year in Emily Holloway, who batted leadoff for the Blue Jays last season and led the team in on-base percentage at .437. First Team All-Conference member Brooke Laidley, batting last year in the power hitter spot, returns the highest slugging percentage from a season ago at .617. She also recorded the most RBIs among the returners at 30 and led the team in home runs last season with four.
Returning for the 2019 season after sitting out in 2018 due to injury is the 2017 SLIAC Newcomer of the Year Josie Cotter. She led the 2017 team in home runs with five and tied a gameday record for RBI (6) and home runs (2) in a game. She was also second on the team in slugging at .616.
Madison Washington, Madison Ingram, and Mackenzie Myers each were All-Conference nods in the 2018 season and will add depth in batting and pitching for the 2019 season.
Westminster opens up its season Feb 23-24 in Conway, Arkansas, where it will face Centenary. The Blue Jays open at home March 9-10 against Grinnell and Wisconsin-Platteville.
Softball Poll - Points (1st Place Votes)
1. Westminster - 78 (7)
2. Greenville - 70 (2)
T3. Spalding - 62 (1)
T3. Fontbonne - 62
5. Webster - 52
6. Eureka - 37
7. Blackburn - 31
8. Iowa Wesleyan - 29
9. Principia - 15
10. MacMurray - 12