By Brody Feldmann
Coming off of a state championship season, the Mustang Lady Broncos softball team knows they will have a target on their back.
“It is going to take a lot of patience early on, but we definitely have the talent to be competitive and we still have high expectations,” said head coach Jamie Roberts. “We plan to continue to be a state contender even though we are young.”
Mustang brings back a handful of seniors with varsity experience but will have to rely on inexperienced underclassmen to step up in big roles.
The biggest role that the Broncos will need filled is in the circle with Kylie Dodson and Anna Hammer graduating last spring.
“Our biggest gaps to fill is going to be in the circle,” said Roberts.
Mustang has a couple of arms to choose from with Olivia Roberts and Michaela Harcrow, but neither have much experience. The pitcher’s battery mate also will be a new face and hasn’t been named.
But, with multiple girls stepping up the Broncos will have some choices behind the plate with Kaitlyn Peters, Kendall Hannon and a possible freshman or two.
“We are looking for an everyday catcher, whoever is hitting,” said Roberts.
One familiar face will be manning the shortstop position with University of Oklahoma commit Kenzie Donihoo returning for her senior season.
Her middle infield partner will likely be Mallory McCoy with the two of them turning double-plays together.
Makenzie Richards looks to get starting time at third base as a senior. She has playing experience for the Lady Broncos, just not an abundance of experience.
The outfield will be where the merry-go-round could be going this season for the Broncos with the likes of; Allee Ashbaugh, Peyton Henry, Kali Roberts, Kayla Mantooth and many more.
Mustang’s defense will have to step up behind whomever is in the circle, but the Broncos offense will be able to score with just about anybody.
“We know we are going to have to play some great defense behind our pitchers this year because they don’t bring a whole lot of experience in varsity play,” Roberts said. “We know we can hit, we are going to put up runs and that is just an expectation we have for this team.”
The season kicks off for Mustang next Tuesday at home against Southmoore at 6:30 p.m.