DePaul softball showing reasons for optimism in 2018 as defending Big East conference champions

For the second time this week, the DePaul Blue Demons won’t play due to weather. After their scheduled contest on Monday against Illinois State was cancelled, they won’t be playing in Omaha, Nebraska this weekend against Creighton either.

While DePaul no longer features the likes of slugger Nicole Pihl this year, the team has been fairly successful anyway in 2018. Currently, they hold a 24-13 overall record, and a record of 7-2 in conference play.

Photo from the DePaul Blue Demons

Pihl led DePaul and the BigEast conference with 14 home runs last season in conjunction with a .787 slugging percentage. But while there are obvious repercussions that come with losing a player who was that productive on a team, DePaul’s core has done an remarkable job filling that void by committee so far in 2018.

Blue Demons catcher and part-time third baseman Morgan Greenwood (Junior) has helped lead the charge so far, having registered five homers, 25 RBIs, and a .557 slugging percentage through 37 games played and 106 at bats.

NCAA Softball
Photo from the DePaul Blue Demons

Senior Megan Leyva has been equally valuable for the Blue Demons since their first game on February 9th at the Total Control Sports Invitational. In 36 games and 103 at bats, Leyva has hit six long balls, and has contributed 26 RBIs and a .583 slugging percentage at the plate. As a pitcher who sometimes plays in the outfield as well, Leyva has a vital role on the club defensively too, and is undoubtedly a major part of its leadership group.

Photo from the DePaulia

Another key piece of the puzzle for DePaul is Plainfield, Illinois native Jessica Cothern. Cothern definitely isn’t having anything even close to resembling a sophomore slump after winning the award for freshman of the year in the Big East conference last season. She’s hit six big flies, knocked in 21 runs, accompanied by a .492 slugging percentage.

Head coach Eugene Lenti is without question another key personnel member who will inevitably reappear in content that I produce moving forward about his team. Lenti has been affiliated with DePaul for over 36 years, and in February, he won his 1,300th game as the team’s head coach.

Courtesy of the Daily Herald

Although Lenti is the head coach for the Blue Demons, Lindsay Platt serves as an associate head coach, and she plays an extremely prominent role working with DePaul pitchers. Having also played for the Blue Demons during her time as a student, Platt is considered the best pitcher in program history.

Photo from DePaul Athletics

While it may seem like repeating as Big East champions in 2018 will be a tough task, the Blue Demons have an enthusiastic group with a strong desire to win each time they step out onto the field.

As I begin putting out content, I hope to share many wonderful moments with you via this website, and on social media. You can follow me on Twitter @davidpstein_, and stay tuned for an Instagram account that’s in the works.

The Blue Demons play their next game on April 18, against UIC at Cacciatore Stadium, and you can bet that I’ll be there to provide coverage.

For now, thanks for reading my first introductory piece, and be prepared for much more to come!

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