The Miami Dade College softball team is looking to improve on last season’s lackluster 23-24 record that included a 11-9 mark in conference play. Their season ended on the second day of the State Tournament.
Lady Sharks head softball coach Gina De Agüero said the team is poised for a comeback season.
“The chemistry on the team is a game changer,“ De Agüero said. “This season we are fortunate enough to have players that want to go out there and compete on a daily basis.”
The Lady Sharks are looking to reinvigorate their lineup with freshman pitchers Kiana East and Emma Maitland, who will help carry the team’s pitching load.
East, a freshman from Viera, Fla., was a First-Team All-State, Cape Coast Conference Champion and Brevard County Softball Player of the Year while playing for Viera High School.
Maitland, a freshman from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., was First-Team All-State selection at South Plantation High School in Broward High School.
“I have a very athletic freshman class and a sophomore class that needs to lead by example,” De Agüero said.
Two of those sophomores are outfielders Cortney Bunker and Samantha Arrastia, who missed significant time last year due to injury. Both are expected to contribute to the team’s success this year.
Arrastia, who only played in two games last year, had three hits and four stolen bases and a .500 batting average. Bunker tallied 15 hits, six RBI with a .556 batting average in nine games.
Both are excited to be back on the field.
“You have to find that rhythm,” Arrastia said. “It’s everybody knowing that we have each others backs and that no matter what, we’re gonna pick each other up every time.”
A major issue for the softball team last season was defending their home turf. The Lady Sharks went 7-5 in away games but only won nine out of 23 games at home.
The team hopes a change in temperament will correct that.
“The positive energy and the want to improve in every aspect of the game will play a significant role for this season,” De Agüero said.
The Lady Sharks start their season on Jan. 27 at 1 p.m. versus Motlow State Community College in Clearwater, Fla.