Aug. 21, 2012
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
The Army softball team has two NCAA participants among a challenging eight-game fall slate with six home games at the Softball Complex and a pair of road games lined up as the Black Knights engage in a competitive non-traditional schedule.
The fall allows head coach Michelle DePolo an opportunity to evaluate the talents of her returning veterans along with the newcomers as she looks to replace the loss of four seniors to graduation. Among the returnees from last year's team that set a school mark for wins (37) and reached the championship finals of the Patriot League Tournament for the first time since 2006 are senior Alex Reynolds, juniors Amanda Nguyen and April Ortenzo, along with sophomores Morgan Lashley and Rae Anne Payleitner.
Lashley earned Patriot League Pitcher and Rookie of the Year honors in 2012, writing her name into Army's and the league's record book as the first player to garner a pair of major awards in the same season. In addition, she was named to the 2012 National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-Northeast Team with outfielder Nguyen. Lashley recorded 237 strikeouts compiling a 2.25 earned run average and 33-16 mark.
Nguyen, Reynolds and Payleitner earned All-Patriot League honors as an outfielder, second baseman and utility player, respectively. Nguyen and Ortenzo ranked among Army's batting leaders hitting .365 and .315, respectively, last spring. Reynolds, a two-time all-league first-team pick along with Nguyen, led Army in runs scored (37), and Payleitner batted .380 in 50 at bats with nine of her 19 hits going for extra bases.
Army opens the fall slate hosting Caldwell in a doubleheader on Sunday, Sept. 16, beginning at 1 p.m. The following Sunday, Sept. 23, the Black Knights entertain Fordham with a doubleheader starting at 3 p.m. The Rams defeated 2012 NCAA National champion Alabama this past spring during the regular season, 8-5, and went on to capture their first Atlantic 10 title while closing out their season at the NCAA Regionals en route to 42-19 mark. Army and Fordham met last fall at West Point with the Rams taking a 7-3 decision.
The Black Knights close out their home slate with mid-Hudson rival Marist on Sunday, Sept. 30, in a doubleheader at 1 p.m. before concluding the fall with a pair of games in Hempstead, N.Y., on Saturday, Oct. 6. Army plays Molloy at 11 a.m. followed at 1:15 p.m. by its second NCAA opponent when it takes on a Hofstra team that is coming off a 42-15 record and the school's first-ever appearance in the 2012 NCAA Super Regionals. The Pride closed out 2012 ranked No. 16 in the country.
2012 FALL SCHEDULE
Sept. 16 CALDWELL (2) 1/3 p.m.
Sept. 23 FORDHAM (2) 3/5 p.m.
Sept. 30 MARIST (2) 1/3 p.m.
Oct. 6 Molloy+ 11 a.m.
Oct. 6 at Hofstra 1:15 p.m.
Home games in CAPS