The Titans had an impressive run in 2016, going 45-16 (17-4 in the Big West Conference) and reaching the NCAA tournament before losing to UCLA at regionals – that was the first postseason appearance for CSF since 2009.
Senior outfielder Delynn Rippy is back after leading the team in hitting at .373; she also stole 14 bases and drove in 34 runs. Samantha Vandiver, a junior, did excellent work as leadoff hitter, closing at .340 with a team-high 48 runs. Providing power will be Alexis Gonzalez, who had nine home runs and 45 RBI to go with a solid .416 on-base percentage.
The pitching situation will require some clarity, although a key returning arm belongs to sophomore Sydney Golden, who was 18-6 last year with a 1.97 ERA in 138.2 innings. Whether she increases her workload or not, there’s about 240 innings of work remaining to be tackled.
NOTE: Freshman Kelsie Whitmore played co-ed baseball in the summer of 2016 with the Sonoma Stompers, making her one of a handful of women to play professional baseball since the 1950’s. She played on her high school baseball team in Temecula, CA. NCAA rules allow her to play one sport professionally without affecting her eligibility in softball.