For the fifth year, the Grizzlies’ softball players left their snow boots in Indiana and headed for Kissimmee, Florida, last week.
The team played eight games in a span of four days during the Citrus Games, a series of collegiate level games hosted by Diamond 9 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.
“We try to do that every year because the weather is so bad up here that we couldn’t play,” said head coach Butch Zike.
The team ended the road trip 4-4, which freshman Kayla Selzer see as a sign for improvement.
“Overall, I don’t think the team performed at our best,” Selzer said. “We went 4-4, which might not seem too bad to some, but I think our team is capable of much more.”
Zike agreed, adding that the trip showed many areas for improvement, specifically offensively.
“I think our overall play was just about what you would expect early in the season. We need to improve a bit defensively, improve a lot offensively,” Zike said. “We didn’t hit in clutch situations very well, and if we had, we would have won a couple more games.”
During the trip, the softball team played against some of the top-ranked teams in the nation including the nation’s number two team, St. John Fisher. Despite the challenge and 1-0 loss, Selzer said it was one of the best games of the trip.
“The team really came together, fought hard and competed,” she said. “This game really showed that we can compete with anyone.”
While Zike said the trip went as he expected, he noted that he was overly impressed with the team’s intensity throughout the games.
Aside from competition, Zike said the trip was great, especially being able to play at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
“It’s a fantastic facility with class, and it was just a great experience for the players and the coaches,” Zike said.
Overall, Kayla Selzer said she was pleased with the trip and the team’s performance, and ultimately called it a learning experience for the entire team.
“Although we did have some hard losses, I think we learned a lot individually and as a team that we can take away and improve on,” she said.
The team plays again today at 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. against Capital University at Grizzly Park.