By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

Last week: Central Washington University ready for tournament





Staff Reporter


The Central Washington University softball team has been on fire the past couple of weeks, winning its last six games.

This has been a complete turnaround for the Wildcats. Prior to this winning streak, Central had lost five games in a row and seemed as if its chance of a conference championship was out of reach. It now seems the team has turned the tables and is now focusing on securing its spot in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference tournament.

What has been the change of direction with this recent success?

“We have a group of talented girls who all understand the idea of family and having each other’s back,” head coach Mallory Holtman said.

This goes to show how the softball team has come together as one, to lead to its recent victories.

In their last games, the Wildcats defeated Western Oregon (8-0 and 8-6) and Saint Martin’s University (9-3 and 3-1).  Sunday was also the  celebration of  senior day and the team’s last home game of the season.

“It was an exciting weekend for our team, especially knowing that this was the last time we will ever play at home together,” senior pitcher Maria Gau said. “It was a great way to end my four years on our home field.

Gau has been playing softball for nearly 15 years and knows it will be a weird transition once it’s all over.

“I’m going to miss playing with my teammates who have become my second family,” Gau said.

Gau and senior second baseman Jill McDaniels were named GNAC players of the week and have been crucial assets to the team. This past weekend Gau held the offense with her fourth win that week and 14th in the season. McDaniels went 10-for-18 this past week, as well as hitting two homeruns and driving in eight runs. Gau and McDaniels are just a few of the Wildcat seniors who will graduate this year, along with five others.

“Each and every senior has brought something to this team that will be either irreplaceable or hard shoes to fill,” sophomore short stop Andrea Hamada said. “They have showed us leadership and have led this team to its success this year and they will be missed greatly next year.”

The Wildcats are now  25-14 on the season and 14-6 in GNAC play. Central is currently second place in the conference, trailing Western Oregon by just two games.

The Wildcats will travel to Nampa, Idaho this upcoming week to take on Northwest Nazarene. They will be playing a four-game series on April 25 and 26. Central hopes to keep its winning streak alive and continue on its journey to a possible conference championship in the GNAC tournament, which will be held in Richland, Wash., from May 1-3.

“The girls are ready for it. We just need to focus on the goal and don’t take any team lightly,” Holtman said. “They need to play like this is the World Series.”

The Wildcats had a weekend off before they take on the Crusaders.

“We’re preparing for Northwest Nazarene like every other team we have prepared for,” Hamada said. “And that is to go in mentally and physically ready to play our best, because we know NNU is not going to give up till the last out of each game.”

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