The Arizona State University women’s softball team is more than half way through the season and is gearing up for the remainder of the schedule and a possible postseason run.
With three of the four remaining series of the regular season being Pac-12 matchups, Head Coach Craig Nicholson said preparation for success in the rest of the season will include consistency.
“At this time of year it’s about continuing to work on consistency and just trying to stay sharp.” Nicholson said. “There’s nothing that’s going to happen in a game where we’re not going to react the way we should react. It’s more about just consistency of being able to make pitches, being able to have quality at-bats, being able to make plays.”
The strategy for the rest of the season and postseason won’t be different from that of any other game, Nicholson said.
“It’s still about going out and doing things the right way, and if we can continue to do that, we’ll be in good shape,” he said.
The Sun Devils started the season strong with 18 wins in a row. The streak was broken on Feb. 27 in a 3-2 loss to South Carolina. Their season record up to this point is 38 wins and six losses.
Right-handed pitcher and senior Dallas Escobedo feels the season is going well, but thinks that they can do better.
“We’ve been playing really well, but we still haven’t been our best,” she said. “As a whole I think we can still get better, and so we haven’t really hit our peak and I think that as we grow we will be able to during postseason when it’s most important.”
She also said every Pac-12 matchup is preparation for the postseason.
“You play a great team each weekend in a three game series and anything can really happen,” she said.
Escobedo has an ERA of 1.71 and was named Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week for the week of April 7.
“I have more confidence than I have ever out on the mound,” Escobedo said of her performance this season.
ASU has a winning record against Pac-12 teams with 12 wins and three losses. With 12 regular season games left, Nicholson isn’t focused on the postseason quite yet, though.
“For us, it’s one game at a time,” Nicholson said.
The Sun Devils swept Utah in a three-game home series this past weekend, and Nicholson won his 1,000th game as a head coach. Despite the accomplishment, Nicholson will not consider his first season a success unless they can make a run in the postseason, he said.
“If we can find the consistency that we need to make a run deep in the postseason, then I’ll give myself a good grade,” he said. “If not, then I won’t.”
Nicholson was previously employed as head coach at Ball State, and this is his first season with the Sun Devils.
ASU will be heading to Washington next to take on the Huskies in a three-game series beginning Thursday, April 17.