EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – After nearly three weeks of practice, the SIUE softball team will start the fall season with four games this weekend.
The sites will be split for the weekend. On Saturday, SIUE travels to St. Louis to take on Washington University at noon followed by a 4 p.m. contest against the Saint Louis Billikens. On Sunday, SIUE plays at Cougar Field against Wabash Valley at 2 p.m. and Lindenwood-Belleville at 4 p.m. Wabash Valley and Lindenwood-Belleville face off at noon.
SIUE, coming off its fourth consecutive year of advancing to the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament championship game, has four new freshmen this season. Infielder/outfielder Alana Cobb-Adams, infielder Bailley Concatto, infielder Jill Niehaus and pitcher Corrina Rivas figure to see their first collegiate action this weekend.
SIUE Head Coach Sandy Montgomery likes the quality of talent in her team's dugout.
"I think they are extremely talented, but we're very young," said Montgomery, who passed the 1,000-win mark last season. "We're going to be putting a lot of young players on the field together so we still have a lot of things to cover and a lot of things to clean up."
The Cougars will be looking for players to step into leadership roles after losing six seniors from last year's 41-13 team.
"They need to learn how to lead themselves, figure out the level we want to play at, handle adversity and continue to get better as we play," said Montgomery.
With 18 players on the fall roster, Montgomery said versatility will be important.
"We have a lot of players who can play multiple positions," she said. "We have a lot of players who can be in different places in the lineup so we're going to see where we think they may fit. You'll see a multitude of lineups."