Western softball prepares to face off in a double-header against the Pittsburg State Gorillas on Saturday, March 29.
The Gorillas and the Griffons met on the field last season for yet another double-header, and Western peeled out of Gorilla territory with victories in both games.
This time around, Western invites Pitt State to play in St. Joseph, and they are more than prepared to face the opposition.
“Pitt is always a good team, so we need to keep focusing and work hard to get the job done and win those games,” outfielder Bre Fleschner said.
Western is confident that, although Pitt State is a tough team in their books, they can play just as hard and secure a win.
“Pitt has great hitters and good pitching, but I definitely believe that we can beat them,” infielder Tiffany Gillaspy said.
Despite Western’s confidence, they do not plan on underestimating their opponents, regardless of last seasons’ victories over the Gorillas.
“Pitt State is a team that is on the rise. They are a solid team who competes well and always plays us very tough,” pitcher Jackie Bishop said. “It will take more than just an ‘okay’ day to come out with a win.”
Pitt State is currently 15-12 in the regular season and 2-4 in conference play.
The Gorillas have a slew of heavy hitters in their lineup, but Western can respond with heavy hitters of their own, which will make for a very intense matchup.
“Pitt State has always been a tough opponent. Their hitting has been really good this year,” infielder/outfielder Brooke Schaeban said. “But, I feel like, as long as our pitching pitches a smart game, our hitters will be able to out-hit them.”
Although Western plays Pitt State in what most would consider an exhausting double-header, the Griffons are fully aware of the aspects needed to snag both games.
“Double-headers are always interesting, because it is one thing to beat good team once. But, it’s an entirely different thing to beat a good time twice in a row,” Schaeban said. “Pitching changes make a huge difference between games, so we will need to bring our A game consecutively.”
Western is at a 38-16 overall record for the season, and are 20-8 in MIAA play. The Griffons hope to improve their record as they advance into the matchup against the Gorillas.
“Our team has been working hard at all aspects of the game, whether it be hitting, defense or pitching to improve, because every single game we play the rest of the season is important, and we need to be at our best each and every game,” Bishop said.
Western will welcome Pitt State on Saturday, March 29. First pitch is scheduled for noon.