Jan. 31, 2014
Savannah King enters her junior campaign as the most experienced pitcher on the staff. King has positioned herself to etch her name into the Pitt Softball Record Book as she is approaching some of the top marks in program history.
We caught up with Savannah to dicuss the competition Pitt will be facing this year, the learning experiences she and the took from last year's campaign and what she did to keep herself in playing shape over the summer.
Sidenote: Pitt leaves for California for its first competition IN EXACTLY ONE WEEK!!!
Jan. 29, 2014
No video interviews today, but the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 Preseason Poll was released yesterday. Pitt will play six teams ranked inside the Preseason Top 25, including three of the top four teams in the nation (No. 1 Tennessee, No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 4 Michigan). All of those contests will come within the first two weeks of the season.
From the ACC, only Florida State is ranked in the preseason poll (No. 12), while five other schools are receiving votes (NC State, Virginia Tech, Notre Dame, Syracuse and UNC...in that order).
Jan. 27, 2014
Jenna Lieber hails from Yorba Linda, Calif., which is about five minutes from Pitt's first tournament of the season at Cal State Fullerton. Jenna talks about the excitement of playing her first collegiate softball in front of friends and family.
Jenna, a pitcher, also touches upon the help that upperclassmen Savannah King and Alexa Larkin have provided so far, as the two juniors have had the ball in the circle for the majority of the past two years.
Jan. 24, 2014
Fun Fact: 44 percent of the Pitt softball roster hails from the state of California. The Panthers have eight players from Cali, including freshman Kaitlin Manuel.
Kaitlin is our first freshman featured in Preseason Central and she talks about the adjustments that she has made going from high school to college softball, and from living in California to living in Pittsburgh.
Jan. 21, 2014
Junior Kaila Balatgek has moved from short stop to third base for the 2014 campaign. We talked to her about the adjusments she has had to make.
Also - Kaila played summer ball with teammates Alexa Larkin and Carissa Throckmorton. While sporting her new hair-do, she talked about the chemistry the team has built together and how that will help on the field.
Jan. 20, 2014
Center fielder Carly Thea hit .302 and led the team in doubles during Big East action last season. Carly discusses how she plans to keep that production rolling into the 2014 campaign, and also the excitment of facing a challenging schedule which includes WCWS teams in Oklahoma, Tennessee, Michigan and USF.
Jan. 17, 2014
Jan. 15, 2014
Second baseman Maggie Sevilla will return for her third year at Pitt, but will play as a redshirt sophomore after suffering a season-ending injury in Pitt's seventh game of 2013. Sevilla was batting .476 with 10 hits in 21 at bats prior to the injury.
The power-hitting infielder will play a vital role in Pitt's success this year with the consistency she brings at the plate and the leadership she provides in the field. We caught up with Maggie to see how her off-season went and what she looks forward to in 2014.
Jan. 13, 2014
The University of Pittsburgh softball team official begins its inaugural season in the ACC on Tuesday, January 14. Preseason Central will be your all-access look into the Pitt softball team as the Panthers prepare for their trip to California in early February where they will compete at CSU Bakersfield and then in the Cal State Fullerton Tournament.
Pitt returns 14 players from last year's roster and adds four newcomers. Tori Nirschl is back for her sophomore campaign after leading the team in almost every offensive statistical category en route to being named the 2013 Big East Rookie of the Year.
We caught up with Tori to kick off Preseason Central. Be sure to check back every day throughout the preseason for continuous content including videos, Q&A's and photo galleries.