LYNDON CENTER Vt. – The Hornets have landed in Clermont, Florida where they will open up their 2015 season on Sunday morning against Davenport University.
"Every year you're looking for the answer," said Head Coach Bill Johnson. "We have to re-configure the infield this season so that's a challenge."
It will be the first of 12 games that Lyndon will play at the National Training Center. Last year was a bit of a rocky start for Lyndon, as they went just 1 and 9. The North Atlantic Conference treated them a little bit better as they went 6 and 8, finishing fifth and earning them a NAC playoff birth. The Hornets eventually ended up losing to Husson in the semi-finals, knocking them out of the tournament.
"What we're looking for out of the seniors is for them to be consistent," said Johnson. "A lot of what we do will be contributed by them because they are playing key roles."
Davis finished first in Strikeouts with 98, and fourth in NAC victories with 9. Lyndon will also be relying on potential leadoff batter and arguably the fastest player in the NAC, Shelby Sheridan.
"I thought Shelby was the best kept secret in division three softball last year," said Johnson. "She gives us that legitimate leadoff threat and is someone who can get on base in front of the power hitters."
Last year, she batted .392 while finishing with 14 stolen bases, enough to tie for first place in the NAC. Lyndon's offensive attack will be led by Dakota Crane, striking out just six times in 92 at-bats during the 2014 season.
"Here's a player who makes contact on almost every at bat," said Johnson. "And for a small girl she's got some pop and can really drive the ball."
Johnson said he will also be looking for production out of the new players on the team.
"We've got some young players who can be some really good offensive players," he said. "I really think if the freshmen and sophomores can play key roles, then we can meet our goal."
That goal – making it back to Championship Sunday and coming out of it with their first ever North Atlantic Conference championship.
By Matt Drew, Sports Information Assistant