GALION — Doug Hunt, head softball coach for the Galion Lady Tigers, prefers the element of surprise.
Hunt, now entering his second season as the skipper for the Galion squad, was very cryptic when it came to supplying preview information for the upcoming season.
“We just sort of want to surprise some people you could say,” stated Hunt in an interview.
Hunt and his staff, assistant coach Bethanie Schaffner (second year), junior varsity coach Josh Caudel (first year) and JV assistant and pitching coach Brittany McCleese (second year) are looking to improve on last season’s finish of 8-14 overall and 2-9 in a competitive Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference Red Division.
The Galion Lady Tigers lost five seniors — two were starters — to graduation from last year’s team. However, they will be returning 15 across both the varsity and jayvee levels. Among those players are seven seniors and eight returning letter winners.
A year ago, Gabby Kaple was named first-team all-conference for the Tigers while Emily Sedmak earned second-team all-MOAC Red as a freshman. Dusty Thomas will join Kaple and Sedmak as returning honors winners, as she was named all-conference honorable mention in 2016.
Jaime Ehrman won second-team all-conference honors during the 2015 season and Dani Schieber was named honorable mention, both will also suit up in the orange and blue for Galion this season.
“We have quite a few very talented freshmen and sophomores on this team,” says Hunt. “We may be a young team, but we are highly experienced which allows for constant building each year. This season we will focusing a lot more on the mental aspect of the game.”
The home and season opener for the Galion Lady Tigers is set to take place on Saturday,March 25 in a non-league game against the Bucyrus Lady Redmen. On Wednesday, March 29, league play will start for the Tigers when they travel to Delaware to meet up with the Buckeye Valley Lady Barons.
“We hope to compete with the top teams in our league and maintain a winning record in’17,” the head coach said.