February 10, 201712345678RHE
Win: DIXON (1-0) 8.0510011
Loss: JORDAN (0-1) 7.182205
ZERKLE (MAR) 402000
D'Orazio (MAR) 412000
BRAXTON (MAR) 402000
February 10, 201712345RHE
Florida State4090X13110
Win: Burroughs (1-0) 4.031116
Loss: THOMAS (0-1) 0.003330
WARD (LIP) 211111
HIGGINS (LIP) 201000
Klaevemann M (FS) 322010
Powers (FS) 232010
Gordon (FS) 312100
Harrod (FS) 312200
Softball ready to open season at Florida State
Thursday, February 9, 2017
By Mark McGee
Softball ready to open season at Florida State

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Sometimes one slogan is not enough.

The Lipscomb Lady Bisons softball team is entering the season with two slogans – “Show Up” and “Perfect Effort”.

Lipscomb coach Kristin Ryman admits that “Show Up” goes much deeper for the players who chose the slogan during fall practices than it might appear to those not part of the program.

“For the players it is an acronym for `same heart, one way, united passion’,” Ryman said. “It is a way of saying the same thing three ways, but it all ties together for them stressing team unity.

“We have a way of doing things. We want to make sure everybody is on board with what we are doing. If one person has not bought in, that passion we want to play with is not going to be united.”

At the beginning of practice the players “stack it up” and shout “Show Up”. At the end of practice if everyone has worked hard they “stack it up” again and shout “Showed Up”.

“It has been kind of fun,” Ryman said.  “It gives them closure at the end of practice by saying they accomplished what they intended to do.”

Ryman also thinks that for those outside the program it might be difficult for them to understand the influence of the slogan “Perfect Effort”.

“It is the idea that we can’t control the outcome,” Ryman said.  “It is so easy in our sport to get caught up in the outcome like what is my batting average and what is my ERA? Those things figure in, but we have to be more mindful on a daily basis of the process.

“What are we doing to hit .350? If we want to win the ASUN Conference what are we doing to get there? We can make the effort perfect even if we don’t always have control over the outcome.”

They get to their first official test of the season Friday morning when they face Marshall at 10 in the first day of the Unconquered Invitational hosted by Florida State University.

At 12:30 p.m. they return to the field against host Florida State, No.3 nationally in preseason. All games are being played at JoAnne Graf Field.

Saturday they play Furman at 10 a.m. with the rest of the weekend schedule to be determined through Sunday.

Lipscomb is 1-2 overall against Marshall. The last time the two teams met was in 2012.

Florida State is 2-0 against Lipscomb with a doubleheader sweep by scores of 5-1 and 11-3 during the 2008 season. Florida State was an NCAA semifinalist last season and has won the ACC tournament title the past three years and the regular season title the past four years.

The Lady Bisons enter the season with a large pitching staff which is low on numbers of innings pitched in a Division I softball game. Sophomore Mandy Jordan, senior McCarley Thomas, freshman Megan Gray and senior Taylor Neuhart are joined by two position players who can also pitch in junior Caitlin Plocheck and freshman Chloe Yeager.

The bulk of the catching duties will be handled by junior Abby Fenichel who is a preseason All-ASUN Conference selection. Third baseman Sarah Higgins is also available as well behind the plate.

In the infield Plocheck returns at first base. Also working at the position are Yeager and redshirt freshman Jenna Pealor.

The middle of the infield is expected to be held down by a pair of freshmen with Hannah DeVault at second base and Peyton Ward at shortstop.

Higgins, a preseason All-ASUN pick, is expected to return at third. Also getting looks will be redshirt junior Mimi Cartwright.

The outfield will have a similar look as last season. Sophomore Destinee Brewer, who played several games in center last season, will start there.

Senior Kasey Gibson moves from right field to left field. Freshman Abby White is also spending time in left field, but can play any of the outfield positions.

In right field Cartwright is penciled in as the starter.

Sophomore Khayla Green could play a number of positions this season from right field to shortstop.

Ryman only has 16 players on the roster so having a player with the ability to play multiple positions is a plus.

Ryman thinks her team is ready for the challenges this weekend.

“We always have a challenging schedule and we base it on the type of team we expect to have,” Ryman said. “I like this team. I have confidence in this team.”