Looking Back & Looking Forward!

I really dropped the ball, no pun intended, with the blog as the end of the 2013 season approached. This post will give all of you Georgia Softball fans a quick recap of some of the awards and accomplishments Georgia garnered in 2013.

Georgia finished the 2013 season with an overall record of 40-21 to go along with making the  championship game of the Tempe Regional against the Arizona State Sun Devils. The keys to the pitching puzzle seemed to fit towards the end of the season as Montemayor and Wilkinson baffled opponents consistently for the last month of the season. Perhaps this will be a sign of things to come in the circle next year?! Last I heard, Geri Ann has been working very hard on her approach and spin in the off season and I super excited to see how she looks in the Fall.

For her outstanding performance at both the plate and in the circle in 2013, the NFCA tabbed Georgia rookie standout, Geri Ann Glasco, as a 3rd-Team All American. Paige Wilson was named an Easton 1st-Team All American, while Geri Ann Glasco and Kaylee Puailoa both garnered 2nd-Team honors.

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1st Team All-SEC and Easton 2nd Team All-American rookie slugger, Kaylee Puailoa, takes a healthy cut in a 2013 contest. (Courtesy GeorgiaDogs.com, shot by Evan Stichler)

Paige Wilson led the 2013 Georgia Bulldogs at the plate with a .403 average, 16 home runs, 66 RBI, and an impressive 1.169 OPS. Geri Ann Glasco (.363, 19 HR, 61 RBI, 1.204 OPS) and Kaylee Puailoa (.380, 16 HR, 54 RBI, 1.182 OPS) also put up monster numbers from the plate as rookies!

Georgia has two incoming freshmen that are poised to make an immediate impact in the form of Malia Rivers (Brentwood, CA) and Maeve McGuire (Downers Grove, IL). Over the Summer, Malia Rivers was tagged as the Player of the Year in the Bay Valley Athletic League and also earned 1st-Team All East Bay honors after batting .595 at the plate with a team-high 25 runs batted in. Over a thousand miles away from Malia, Maeve McGuire was racking up hits at the plate as well. In her senior season, the returning Chicago Sun-Times Player of the Year batted a .515 clip with nine home runs and 51 RBIs. McGuire finished her career at Benet Academy with a .472 career average and 25 home runs.

Malia Rivers takes a swing in a 2013 game for Western High School. (Courtesy, The Press Online)

It is no secret that Georgia’s offense was just as explosive as it has been in recent years in 2013. I cannot begin to imagine about how powerful our offense can be in 2014 if things gradually are progressing and hard work is being put in over the Summer! I truly believe that Malia Rivers is going to be as good as they come in the SEC once she settles in. Combine her speed and athleticism with the power and discipline of Maeve McGuire and you have two stud rookies on your roster!

Pencil in a last second surprise or two, a transfer, and some much-needed improvements in pitching strategy and I think Georgia is going to give everyone a run for their money for the next three years. We have some pretty big match-ups in 2014, including finally getting to face off against Owen from Mississippi State and an already-looming match-up against Alabama in Tuscaloosa this time around. There is no doubt in my mind that if pitching would have been as good as it was in the end for the entire season, that the 2013 squad could have made it much further in the post season, but hey, that’s what it is all about…Learning!

I believe we can expect to see a much-improved pitching staff in 2014 in the form of Morgan Montemayor, Chelsea Wilkinson, and Geri Ann Glasco. If the hitting gets even 1% better from 2013 to 2014, we will still be able to out-hit a majority of the opponents we face, including most of the SEC programs. No doubt about it, we are not the only young team that is looking for a trophy…Kentucky, LSU, and Florida just to name a few.

With the graduation of the likes of Ivy Renfroe, Chelsea Thomas, Rachele Fico, Raven Chavanne, and others, the SEC becomes a wide-open race for the top spot. With their strong, reloaded offense, and with some improved work from the circle, I have complete confidence that the Bulldogs are going to pose a huge threat in 2014.

Here’s looking forward to another great season in 2014! To think, only two months or so until Fall Practices and three months away from some Fall Ball games! Bring it on!

As always, Go Dawgs!

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Glasco Earns Third SEC Freshman of the Week Award

(Story Courtesy GeorgiaDogs.com)

 “Georgia freshman Geri Ann Glasco has been tabbed the Southeastern Conference Softball Freshman of the Week for April 8-14. It is third time this season that Glasco has picked up the honor and the fourth time that a Georgia player has be recognized for an SEC weekly award this season.

The Watkinsville, Ga., native finished with a .412 batting average over five games to help the Bulldogs to a 4-1 record. She also slugged at a 1.176 clip and registered an OPS of 1.620. Glasco accounted for 16 of Georgia’s 32 runs last week, scoring five and driving in 11.

Glasco went 7-for-17 at the plate with a double and four home runs, all of which were two-run blasts. Each of her home runs were either go-ahead homers or eventual game winners. 

In Georgia’s 7-6 win over South Carolina last Saturday, Glasco hit three, two-run home runs, becoming the first player in program history to hit three homers in a game. Two of her blasts came in consecutive at bats, with the second one tying the game at 4-4. In her final at bat of the game, she hit what proved to be the game winning home run that helped the Bulldogs take the second game of the weekend 7-6. Glasco hit her fourth two-run home run in two games in the rubber game of the series against South Carolina. Georgia went on to win the contest 2-0.

In Georgia’s nonconference doubleheader against Western Carolina, Glasco finished with three RBI with a double and two singles. She also went 1-1 in the circle with two complete-game performances, including a one-hitter against Western Carolina. 

The four home runs last weekend brought her season total to a team and SEC-leading 17. Glasco is also one of only two freshmen in the nation to hit 17 home runs this season. Glasco now leads the SEC in home runs (17), RBI (53), total bases (112) and is second in slugging percentage (.855). 

Glasco and the Bulldogs return to action when they welcome No. 24 USC Upstate to Jack Turner Stadium on Wednesday, April 17 at 6 p.m.”