By, Nicole Grazioli '12
SANTA CLARA, Calif. – October 4th marked the official start of Santa Clara University softball's fall season. The team welcomes eight new freshmen and two new transfers to its 2012 roster, including junior All-America shortstop Alyssa Jepsen and true freshman Jaymi Bautista-Geiger, who has played with the Peruvian National Team.
Bautista-Geiger and Jepsen are part of an outstanding incoming class, which includes Briana Rios, Jordan Newell, Ashley Haney, Jenna Krummen, Breezy Bernard, Carissa Theis, Sarah Haga and Amity Tello.
The young players should add depth to a Bronco team that returns ten players including highly accomplished seniors Kristin Welsh, Briana Knight (All-PCSC First Team) and Catherine Surane (All-PCSC Second Team).
"Everyone is getting along great," said newcomer Bautista-Geiger, who was excited for fall practices to officially start and added that the squad is working hard to prepare for the season. "The returners have really welcomed the new players and made us feel a part of the team."
Head coach Lisa Mize is also happy with how smoothly everything has been going, especially dealing with the largest squad the team has had in what is now her fourth year as head coach.
"Since we have so many new players this year, we are really focusing on bonding and learning to play as a team," Mize remarked about the preseason. "The rookies, however, have transitioned very well and are working extremely hard."
The program recently announced its 2011 fall schedule and will be playing its first game tonight, Friday, October 14 at San Jose City College at 3 p.m. The Broncos are looking forward to a season filled with success and are eager to get back playing games.
"I can't wait to play in our game tonight and I know that everyone else on the team is just as excited as I am," said Bautista-Geiger. "It'll be interesting to see how everyone plays together and how we are as a team, but my overall feeling is that this year will be a good one."