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Photo by: Sarah Angeron

Nicholls softball team huddles between plays against Jackson State University on February 17.

Softball team reflects on past season as new season begins

February 2, 2017

The Nicholls State University women’s softball team finished second in the Southland Conference during last year’s regular season before falling in the Southland Conference Tournament.

“We can come into a season where everybody expects us not to be that great and still have a great season,” senior shortstop Brooke Morris said on her biggest takeaway from last season.

The Colonels finished last season with an overall record of 39-17 and a conference record of 21-5, their most overall and conference wins since 1998. It was also the first season that Nicholls had the most first team All-Southland Conference honorees since 1997.

“I think it was maturity more than anything. A lot of the players really expanded their mindsets on what it was going to take for the team to win.” Angel Santiago, the head coach for the Nicholls softball team, said. Among those things, Santiago indicated that it was essential for his players to sacrifice time in order to put together more diligent practices.

Nicholls opened last season with the very same event they look to open this season with, the Lion Classic, hosted by Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, La. The Colonels won all but their last game at the classic before moving on to take down Jackson State University two games in a row.

Nicholls was met with their first set of obstacles of the season at the Black and Gold Tournament in Montgomery, Alabama. There the Colonels dropped three of their five games. The Colonels went 2-3 in the Mississippi Gulf Coast Classic and 3-2 in the Mean Green Spring Fling.

Shortly after entering conference play last season, Nicholls found their stride with an eight-game winning streak, and then another 13-game win streak after going 1-2 against McNeese State University. Aside from two games during each of those streaks, each of the Colonels’ opponents during that time were from the Southland Conference.

“You want to forget but you also want to learn,” Morris said on carrying last season’s victories into this year.

“If we stay on the right track and if we’re really in shape, we can push through.”

The Colonels season came to an end during the Southland Conference Tournament, where they only managed to win one of three games.

“We never gave up. You can really see the difference between last year and the years before when we had a tough game and we had to fight, we really won those games, where in the years before we would have just crumbled,” Morris said.

Nearing the start of the upcoming season, the Colonels intend to continue to improve the game plan that started to make them more successful last season.

“When it comes to the overall athleticism of our team, we are more capable now in taking an outfielder and putting them in the infield,” Santiago said on the team’s versatility moving forward into this year.

With 56 games scheduled for this year’s softball season, the same number of games the Colonels played last year, Nicholls cannot help but look back at the success of last year before moving forward.

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