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APSU Softball begins Practice, releases Fall Schedule

 

APSU SoftballClarksville, TN – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) softball team will opened its fall team practice schedule Monday, September 8th, at Cathi Maynard Park-Cheryl Holt Field, as they prepare for their fall schedule of contests and the 2020 regular season.

Austin Peay Softball plays doubleheader against Trevecca at home on September 21st. (APSU Sports Information)

Austin Peay Softball plays doubleheader against Trevecca at home on September 21st. (APSU Sports Information)

This fall marks the 35th year for the softball program and the second under head coach Kassie Stanfill, who posted a 33-22 overall mark in her first season – including a 16-6 mark in Ohio Valley Conference play.

“It’s always nice when you get everyone back on campus,” Stanfill said. “This is team 35 for us this year and it’s neat to start figuring out our identity and start building our culture.

“We are going to be a younger squad this year than we were overall last season, but we are focusing on our mindset and trying to outhustle whoever we’re playing against and know we’re the hardest working team in the OVC. We are going to be gritty and play with a lot of heart and hope that comes together in a family atmosphere and shows up on the field for us.”

Although the Govs graduated six senior stars from last year’s team, the cupboard isn’t bare for Stanfill, as All-OVC Second-Team third baseman Lexi Osowski returns for her sophomore season, along with fellow starters Kelsey Gross (P/1B), Drew Dudley (2B), Brooke Pfefferle (SS), Bailey Shorter (OF).

The Govs will also see the return of redshirt sophomore Emily Harkleroad, who sat out last season due to an injury after starting at first base as a freshman in 2018, as well as seniors Emily Moore, Brett Jackson, Kelsey Gray, Victoria Eccleston and juniors Katelyn Smith and Katie Keen.

“Even with graduation, we have a solid group of returners in our upper class,” Stanfill said. “So when I look at our roster, I’m not super worried. Yes, we do have a few holes in the circle to fill and that’s going to be our biggest challenge this fall, along with not being as much of a home run hitting team as we were last year.”

Looking to fill the hole in the circle will be junior college transfer Harley Mullins, who pitched her freshman season at Northeast Mississippi Community College, and true freshman Shelby Harpe.

“We’re fortunate to have Kelsey’s (Gross) leadership and Brett (Jackson) behind the plate to help recharge our pitching and I know Coach (Breanna) Wonderly is extremely excited and working with them and seeing what we truly have in the circle, so I think with her help they are going to build and transform into what we need them to be.”

Along with the two new pitchers, the Govs also have six other newcomers that are battling for starting spots on this year’s squad, in junior college transfer Ali King (IF) and five true freshmen: Maddie Boykin (IF), Alex Grubbs (UT), Morgan McMahon (UT), Riley Suits (C) and Kendyl Weinzapfel (OF).

“There is no lock on any position,” Stanfill said. “So, I think that brings out the competitive edge to practices and scrimmages because it is wide open, and every player knows every day they’re out earning their positions.”

Along with the practices this fall, the Govs will have seven fall home contests, beginning with doubleheader versus Trevecca, at 1:00pm, on September 21st and a 3:00pm, twinbill versus Wabash Valley College on October. 4th.

They will wrap up their fall slate with their team inter-squad Red and Black World Series on October 21st-23rd.


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