2004 Softball Season Outlook
Feb. 9, 2004
The George Washington University softball team is entering its second season of play, but with all the changes, it can certainly be considered a new and exciting beginning. The coaching staff is brand new and the roster has only three holdovers from the 2003 inaugural edition of Colonials softball. Head coach Shaunte' Fremin joins the GW community after spending time at her alma mater, Louisiana State, where she helped build the fledging program into one of the nation's best as a player and coach. She also served as an assistant coach with one of the SEC's premier programs, Georgia. She brings with her one of the outstanding college softball players of the past five seasons, Trena Peel, who also played at LSU.
The staff has already brought a blue-collar approach to winning and they plan to out work, out prepare and out teach all of their opponents. The coaching staff feels that preparation and motivation are the keys to success and by getting their roster to push the limit physically, while preparing them mentally, the 2004 edition of the Colonials wil have a chance to compete in the Atlantic 10 Conference.
The coaches will be working with one of the youngest teams in America. The roster contains no seniors or juniors and only five sophomores, with the rest being first year college students. Thus, the returnees will have to step up as leaders, before the average sophomore would be expected to do so.
One of the vital players to the upcoming season will be Elana Meyers, the only returning starter. Meyers is 100% committed to improving on last season and the coaches expect her to be one of the best switch-hitters in the league. She is evolving into one of the top defensive players in the country at shortstop and was recognized as such by being one of only 50 players to be invited to try out for the USA Junior Olympic team this past summer.
Fellow returnee Kristen Miller will have a chance to contribute at the corners and may be the most improved hitter from the fall. She is making huge strides daily and her work ethic should allow her to have an impact on the 2004 Colonials.
Rebecca Schumer has jumped to the left side of the batters box in order to use her speed to her advantage. She is goal-oriented and determined and the coaches can always count on her to be a leader in the weightroom and during training sessions. With continued advancement, Schumer should be solid in rightfield as well as at the plate and on the base paths.
First-year sophomore Tonya Brown will provide speed on the base paths. Brown should contribute by opening up the flow of what is expected to be an aggressive running attack.
The Colonials will get an injection of talent and energy from their nine freshman. The group has already grown from their fall season and will obviously play an integral part in setting the foundation of Colonials softball for seasons to come.
Lisa Cohen will battle for time at third base. Her work ethic sets a great example for the rest of the team and may make it difficult for the coaches to keep her out of the lineup.
Gabby Culp should make a huge splash in the Atlantic 10 both at the plate and on the mound. Her ferocity and power sets a tone that the rest of the team feeds off of every day. If she continues to work and develops her approach to the game, she has a chance to be the most dominant players to wear a GW uniform.
The catching duties will be handled primarily by Kristen Dimeo, who exudes the qualitites of a field general. She has the ability to bring out the best in the pitching staff, and the emotion she competes with is infectious. Dimeo brings an aggressive style to the plate and is capable of using all fields, which makes her a pure run-producing and scoring threat.
Katy Harrigan is the leader in the outfield. She plays as if she has something to prove, which could turn her into one of the teams biggest surprises. Her skills in the field combined with her ability at the plate should have her firmly entrenched in centerfield all season.
The vocal leader of the team is Ashley Horner, who will primarily handle the duties in left field. The coaching staff describes her as the type of player who will make a diving catch to win a game. She will provide power in the middle of the lineup and could be the team's leading RBI producer this spring.
The Colonials will look for Jen Hrycyna to provide a major contribution on the mound, along with being one of the best defensive players, while playing first base. Her ability to locate her pitches could make her one of the toughest pitchers to face in the Atlantic 10. She shows composure and confidence on the mound and isn't easily rattled, which will prove to be essential as GW moves through their tough schedule.
Colleen Kegler is the consumate team player and will be rock solid at second base, while backing up the catching position. She is willing to do anything it takes to help the Colonials, and is capable of winning a number of games for the team. The coaching staff expects her to provide some punch at the plate, and should be stroking doubles all season long.
The "silent assasin" of the team is Melanie Lewis, who will anchor the defense at first base and in the pitching circle. The coaches describe her as the type of player that just gets the job done. Her consistency and explosiveness at the plate will have the coaching staff calling her number in crucial situations, and she will provide a change-of-pace on the mound with her wide array of pitches.
Sara Neumann, a versatile player, has the ability to play both infield and outfield. She takes great pride in playing for GW, which, when combined with her work ethic and great attitude, will make her one of the most valuable Colonials on the roster.
The roster is young, but competitive and hard-working. The ability is there and the coaching staff will settle for nothing less than the best from each member of the 2004 George Washington Colonials. GW expects to be competitive in every game, and with their ability to control tempo and manage a game, they will most certainly improve on the inaugural season of George Washington softball.