only half of their games completed, the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
softball team already has as many wins this year compared to all of last
Pointers own a record of 15-5 after their trip to Florida during spring break
and their first taste of conference action last weekend. Last year, the team
ended with a 14-24 record with only three conference wins.
shows how hard the girls worked over the offseason,” said Head Coach Jill
Millis. “They really took it to heart and wanted to improve.”
pitcher Michelle Jones has also seen a change for the better in this team.
“We’re making huge strides from last year,” Jones said. “It’s a great outlook
on things to come for this season.”
also points out that the team is still not satisfied with just being better
than last year.
we surpassed where we were last year, but that’s not good enough. We want to
keep pushing and pushing to see what we can do,” Millis said. “The players just
want to win.”
improvement of the team hit a climax last weekend when Jones tossed the sixth
perfect game in UWSP softball history.
very cool and very exciting,” Jones said. “I’m really glad that I got to share
that with my teammates.”
only tallied five strikeouts and went on to say that without the defense
backing her up, the perfect game wouldn’t have been possible. “I couldn’t have
done it without them.”
was thrilled to witness Jones’s performance. “She was incredibly efficient,”
averaged only nine pitches per inning according to Millis.
didn’t mow them down, but she did a great job of hitting her spots and getting
the hitters to hit her pitch,” Millis said.
also said that it was interesting to see the team participate in the perfect
game superstition. “Nobody said anything while we were in the dugout,” Millis
team’s hitting and fielding has also improved.
third baseman Katie Shulfer said that the team has improved their hitting with
runners in scoring position. “Most of the time we have been able to bring
runners in instead of leaving them out there,” Shulfer said.
said that the fielding has been a big improvement this season as well. “It’s
huge for pitchers to pitch with confidence when they know that their defense
has got their back and they don’t have to strike everybody out,” Millis said.
the case with every team, there are still some aspects that the team can
improve on. Both the coach and players explained that consistency and
discipline were points the team hoped to improve on.
need to be consistent on both sides of the ball,” Millis said. “Our defense has
improved, but has been inconsistent. When our defense has been inconsistent
this season, those have been the games we’ve lost.”
at the plate is also something the team is working on. “We need to become more
disciplined and not swing at pitches out of the strike zone,” Jones said.
need to swing at good pitches, not at pitches that the opposing pitcher wants
us to chase,” Millis said.
have some work to do, but Shulfer is confident in the team’s ability to make
adjustments and continue improving.
think that we have a great team this year. Everything that doesn’t look good
right now is fixable,” Shulfer said.