The Ellsworth Community College softball team finished their fall season in early October and are now looking to beginning their regular season with games and practices starting in the spring.
Kristi Larson, who was assistant coach last season for the Panthers, has made the transition to head coach under the guidance of Athletic Director and former Head Coach Nate Forsyth at the start of the 2018-19 year. During the summer both Forsyth and Larson recruited for the ECC squad. Forsyth will continue to help the team during the upcoming season as well as new pitching coach, Megan Kaestner.
The Panthers are a young team this season bringing back just two returners from last year. Infielders Mekenzie Wright (Platte City, MO) and Lexi Riggall (Centerville). "Mekenzie and Lexi are two really strong competitors coming back with a lot of experience," commented ECC Head Softball Coach Kristi Larson. "They have really picked it up this fall too and been leaders on our team."
ECC finishes the roster with 11 new incoming players. Sidney Larsen (Des Moines) played at Northwest Missouri state her freshman year and Madison DeWit (Knoxville) who attended DMACC but did not play softball her freshman year. The remaining nine players are true freshman. "The incoming class as a whole has a lot of talent," said Larson. "They really stepped in big. They took the roles that they needed to and ran with them."
ECC played ten different teams during the fall. "We faced some good teams. We got to see some DII schools and see what we are like against them. The team faced some adversity in some of those games and responded very well," commented Larson.
The 2019 spring season will open with two trips to the dome in February and then the team will take a spring trip to the Kansas City, MO area in early to mid-March. "We should see some touch competition during this trip," said Larson.
When asked about the goals Larson has for the team she commented, "I want us to compete in every game. I want our girls to know that they can win any single day. Its just about how you come out and what your effort and attitude level is that day."
Forsyth is looking forward to seeing what this team can do. "I'm excited for this season and the future of ECC softball. They had a good fall and it's a good group," commented Forsyth. "A lot of this group will be back again next year too. We learned a lot in the fall and they like to compete. That is something that Coach Larson will be able to hang her hat on. They will work hard."
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