KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. - The Oregon Tech softball team will throw out the first pitch of the season this coming weekend with a trip to California. They enter the season as the number 26th ranked team in the 2018 NAIA preseason coaches' poll.
The Lady Owls are coming off a strong 2017 where they ended their season in the Championship game of the Costa Mesa Bracket of the NAIA National Tournament, dropping their final game to nationally ranked No. 4 Marian and missing out on a ticket to the NAIA World Series.
Head Coach Greg Stewart spent the offseason addressing the needs of the team, to strengthen the squad and set them back on track for another National Tournament appearance. While the team is returning two All-Americans in Outfielder Tara Moatesand DP/Pitcher Ali Graham, they also lost three All-CCC award winners Katie Virtue, Sadie Birch and Rashaun Sells.
Coach Stewart comments about his pitching recruits, "We had a great opportunity to strengthen our pitching core on the team with NJCAA All-American transfer Amy Robinson from Yavapai College. We are also excited to see what 1st Team All-State (Ore.) Pitcher Sarah Abramson can do for us in the circle." Adding these two highly rated pitchers to an accomplished returning staff should see Tech be very solid from the circle all season and give them additional depth that can help carry a team through a tough regular season schedule.
Stewart continues, "We also brought in several new infielders and local Klamath Falls Catcher McKenna Armantrout to compete for us." Armantrout, a true freshman, was the 2017 OSAA 4A Player of the Year, while Cierra Barkis and Dre Sotelo are both All-American transfers at their former colleges. Redshirt Junior second basemen Kiahna Brown and transfer shortstop Shayna Ige will reload Tech with a talented middle infield.
The CCC preseason coaches' poll has Oregon Tech tied with Corban University as the #2 team in conference. Coach Stewart states, "We will have our work cut out for us. The CCC is always challenging, but a tough preseason schedule should prepare us for what is to come. We have the potential to be a very good team this season, but with many new additions, we will need to figure out how all our pieces work together. I am excited to see what this team can accomplish this year."
The Oregon Tech Softball team will head to Redding, California this Saturday and Sunday to take on No. 18 Simpson University and NCAA D II Notre Dame De Namur to begin the 2018 season.
Follow the softball team for the latest news, stats and updates at www.OregonTechOwls.com, Twitter and Instagram @OregonTechOwls
Press release from Oregon Tech Sports Information.