Fremin enters second season

The Lady Lions finished with a 7-1 record in the fall season. They will be looking to build upon that momentum in the spring and become more cohesive with this new look roster. 
File photo/The Lion's Roar

The Lady Lions softball team is preparing for the 2017 regular season. Head Coach Rick Fremin is entering his second year as head coach of the Lady Lions and is looking to progress this season.

“Now that year one is out of the way and a lot of ground work has been done, we have a lot of pieces in place,” said Fremin. “Things have been much easier. Just with the staff and within the team in day-to-day operations. The players now know the expectations of the head coach and the staff. So things have been running very smoothly and it’s been pleasant.”

 Fremin is not intimidated by the competition the Lady Lions will face this season.

“Our goal is just to compete at a high level and to be in every ball game regardless of our opponent,” said Fremin. “And to be mentally strong and physically strong throughout the entire 56 game season.”

The Lady Lions have a mix of returning players and newcomers from junior college and high school. Returning junior outfielder Kinsey Nichols is coming off hitting .393 and her second straight All-Southland Conference honors. Former junior college players Maddie Edmonston and Kalyn Watts will be joining Nichols in the outfield. The pitching staff is welcoming five newcomers that add depth to the staff: Rachel Hayes, Lacey Hill, Alley McDonald, Ali McCoy and Tanner Wright. 

Fremin got a glimpse of how well these players play with each other during the eight game fall season.

“Based on the fall, and seeing the players kinda gel the transfers and freshmen that have come in, have been really talented along with the returning players that we retained,” said Fremin. “I think there is good team chemistry as well. I look forward to working with them throughout the spring and I do feel that the headway that we made in the fall will carry over.”

The first game of the season will be against Army in the first game of Lion Classic I on Feb. 11. Two Lion Classic tournaments will be played at North Oak Park before the first non-tournament match at Louisiana Tech on Feb. 22. Conference play will begin on Mar. 10-11 in a three game series against Abilene Christian. Only the top six teams in the conference will make it to the Southland Conference tournament. 

“We have already started training,” said Fremin. “The last two weeks we have been training outside or inside weather pending. We have been allowing them to get reps and get game ready. They came in a few weeks ago and did a conditioning test and now that that is out of the way, we were able to jump to practice and getting our pitchers arm ready for seven plus innings. We are ahead of schedule actually right now based on the work we got in so far.”