The Basehor-Linwood Bobcats softball team got off to a 4-0 start to the year entering Wednesday’s game at Pleasant Ridge with wins over Bishop Ward and Turner.
The wins came after a productive set of practices, according to head coach Susan Mayberry.
According to Mayberry, this year’s key things will be depth and athleticism.
“We have a large group of athletes who are going to be pushing themselves to get better and in turn will push their teammates to rise to the occasion,” Mayberry said. “We feel like this year we have options where we have players who can play multiple positions. We are more athletic. We are more competitive. We are more united.”
This year’s Bobcats have four returning players from last year’s squad and two seniors. Mayberry said the team will find out who the key contributors will be as the season plays out.
“It will take tremendous effort and improvement by all involved,” she said. “I don't want to give the opponent a free scouting report.”
She said the team has three goals this season.
“(First is) to re-establish our Bobcat softball culture that breeds success,” Mayberry said “Meaning every coach, team manager and player in this program will pull in the same direction. We will all give every ounce of energy and focus that we have toward the team. (Second is) to finish in the top two of our conference. (Third is) for every person affiliated with our program to make individual sacrifices for the strength of our team.”
This season will see the Bobcats move into the new United Kansas Conference and the team jumping up to 5A. Mayberry said the team tries to not get caught up in the classification hype and the Bobcats have traditionally played 5A and 6A schools in the past.
“Our mindset is we will play whoever, whenever and wherever,” she said. “It is irrelevant how many students are enrolled at a particular school.”
She also said the new conference will present the softball team with a great opportunity with the team joining established programs like Shawnee Heights.
Mayberry said the team is looking forward to all of the games with each game being the most important one.
Prior to the first game, she said the staff was excited for the year.
“The coaching staff is very excited for the season,” Mayberry said. “We have a solid group of parents and alumni who embrace the Bobcat softball way. We have a great group of managers who work very hard so that we can work toward our goals. For our players, being able to put egos aside and do what is best for the team will be a huge factor in our success.”