WAYNE – With the non-conference softball season schedule to start in February, the NSIC Preseason Softball Coaches’ Poll was posted last Thursday.
According to a release from the Wayne State Athletics office, the Wildcats were listed 15th in the preseason rankings with 36 points. Senior third baseman Ashley Hernandez and senior pitcher Maddie Moser were selected as Wildcat Players to Watch in the NSIC this season.
The Wildcats return seven position starters and four pitchers from last year’s team that was 10-13 in non-conference play when the remainder of the 2020 season was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Augustana was voted as the team to beat in the NSIC this season with 222 points and 12 first-place votes followed by Winona State with 210 points and the remaining three first-place votes. Minnesota State (194), St. Cloud State (180) and Minnesota Duluth (161) close out the top five teams.
Concordia-St. Paul came in sixth with 150 points while Northern State (146), Minot State (122), Sioux Falls (120) and Southwest Minnesota State (94) round out the top 10 teams.
University of Mary (85 points) was 11th followed by Bemidji State (65), Upper Iowa (61), Minnesota Crookston (46), Wayne State (36) and MSU Moorhead (28) filling out the coaches’ poll.
Ashley Hernandez, a 5-4 senior third baseman from Omaha (Millard North HS), hit .418 last spring with seven homers and 22 RBI in just 23 games. She was tied for fourth in the NSIC in RBI, fifth in home runs and tied for sixth in hits (28) last season.
Maddie Moser, a 5-9 senior pitcher from Central City (Central City HS), had a 4-2 record last spring in 12 appearances (four starts) with a 4.67 ERA. She is a four-year starter in the circle for the Wildcats.
Also, the 90 spots filled up quickly for a rescheduled high school prospect camp. The camp will take place on Sunday, February 7 from 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the WSC Recreation Center.
The camp will cover all aspects of the game that include pitching, catching, defense, hitting and base running. This is a fast-paced skills camp with feedback provided to help prepare for collegiate level softball.
The Wayne State College softball team will open their 2021 season with a pair of trips to Emporia and Topeka, Kansas before visiting Truman State in Kirksville, Missouri for a doubleheader. WSC will open league play at the Pete Chapman Softball Complex on Tuesday, March 30 hosting Augustana.