Marcus Connolly

The UTSA softball team is ready to go. Following an impressive 2015 season in which the Roadrunners topped C-USA’s West Division, the team will travel to California this weekend to kick off their 2016 season.

Head Coach Michelle Cheatham will look to pick up right where they left off last year. Cheatham’s squad finished last year with a 36-18 overall record and went 16-for-7 in conference play, but lost in the playoffs to eventual C-USA champions Florida Atlantic (39-19, 16-7 C-USA).

The Roadrunners made a splash with their bats last year, and UTSA fans can expect more of the same as their home opener approaches.

“We returned a lot of our big strong hitters…we had several young kids step up last year that are returnees,” Coach Cheatham said of the team’s offensive prowess. “Randee Crawford had a fantastic year. She was probably our best hitter last year with all the RBIs that she had, so we’re really excited to see her coming back.”

In addition to Crawford, who led the league with 19 home runs and tied the UTSA RBI record with 64, the Roadrunners are also counting on a repeat performance from Kendall Burton, the speedy leadoff hitter who led the league in triples last year.

The C-USA preseason poll has the Roadrunners tabbed to finish fourth, a good chip to have on their shoulder as the season finally gets underway. If they are able to repeat their offensive performance of last season and complement it with a nearly intact pitching rotation, the Roadrunners will be a fun team to watch as they put runs on the board and wear out opposing pitchers.

The Roadrunners will kick off their 2016 campaign at the Titan Classic in Fullerton, Calif. with double-headers on both Friday and Saturday. Friday’s matchups will feature matchups against Weber State and tournament host Cal State Fullerton while Saturday’s contests are against San Diego State and Canisius. They will also play San Diego State on Sunday, Feb. 14 before returning for their home opener against North Dakota on Tuesday, Feb. 19.

Conference play will begin on March 12 with a 3-game home series against North Texas. The team also has marquee non-conference matchups against Baylor on Tuesday, March 22 and Texas on April 6 – both at home.

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