Softball: Wildcats head to Baton Rouge to face top competition

Rebecca Friedman, Reporter

After ending last season full of disappointment, Northwestern is aiming to take advantage of its stacked lineup and experienced pitching staff to get off to a quick start this year.

The Wildcats’ offense exploded at the season-opening Kajikawa Classic over the weekend, scoring double-digit runs in three of four games. The first few tournaments of the year will be key in determining how NU matches up against the top talent in the country and in preparing them for an always-competitive Big Ten conference.

The Cats had an incredibly focused offseason and the amount of experience that the team already had allowed them to focus on small things in order to fine-tune their game.

“We’re all just excited to play again,” senior Marisa Bast said. “We’re feeling good and ready for the rest of the season. We’ve put ourselves in a good position to be successful.”

The purple and white lost pitcher Meghan Lamberth and leadoff hitter and outfielder Kristen Scharkey to graduation, leaving behind a deep, experienced squad.

The next stop for the Cats is Baton Rouge, La., for the Tiger Invitational. Once again the Cats will be matched against the top talent in the country, battling against conference rival Penn State, followed by back-to-back matchups against George Washington and No. 21 Louisiana State.

However, with their offense as powerful as last weekend and their pitching staff as effective, the Cats will be a force to be reckoned with in Louisiana and throughout the rest of the season. After next weekend, the Cats will face off in three more national tournaments before beginning the Big Ten season.

“We’re constantly cheering and yelling,” sophomore Kristen Wood said, regarding the Cats’ excitement about doing well in their opening tournament. “It’s a great start and we’re going to keep it up every weekend.”

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