The Chattanooga Lady Mocs softball team announced its spring roster Monday shortly after wrapping up practice at Frost Stadium. The weather provided a perfect day on the field and a chance for the 2014 Lady Mocs to prepare for the upcoming 2013 RBI Club Fall Classic with its 24-member squad.
“We have been able to be on the field a lot these past couple of weeks and get a lot of reps in,” Head Coach Frank Reed said. “We have a lot of girls on the team this year and we’ve had so many great chances to be outside and work together.”
The 2014 roster features nine newcomers to the program – including four transfers – and the Lady Mocs return 15 from last season’s roster. Chattanooga looks to veterans Kaiti Dutton (Tulsa, Okla.), Stephanie Rieck (Chandler, Ariz.), Tyler Templet (Woodstock, Ga.) and Hannah Thurley (Nashville, Tenn.) for its senior leadership.
Returners for the Lady Mocs also include juniors Taylor Deason (Clarksville, Tenn.), Courtney Ervin (Seymour, Tenn.), Nicole Osterman (Kissimmee, Fla.) and Sarah Beth Roberts (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.). Sophomore returners are Rachel Albritton (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), Yoshi Hooks (Cleveland, Tenn.), Anyssa Robles (Lawrenceville, Ga.), Amanda Ross (Torrance, Calif.) and redshirt sophomore Jenny Garcia (Miami, Fla.).
The Chattanooga newcomers begin with four transfers – Criket Blanco (Maryville, Tenn.), Kaitlyn Henderson (Hixson, Tenn.), Shelby Carter (Maple Valley, Wash.) and Marina Wilkerson (Hogansville, Ga.).
Blanco transfers from Georgia after spending her first season with the Bulldogs. The shortstop started 26 games and played in 39, batting .250. The Maryville, Tenn., native collected 13 hits in 52 at-bats and drove in seven runs. The speedy infielder was 2-2 in stolen base attempts.
The second SEC transfer to join UTC is Henderson, a former Silverdale Academy standout. The Hixson, Tenn., resident returns to Chattanooga after spending a season with Kentucky. The right-hander dealt a 3-1 record with the Wildcats and maintained a 1.88 ERA. Thus far, her collegiate career highlight is pitching a no-hitter against North Carolina.
Former Chattanooga State standout Marina Wilkerson signed with the Lady Mocs soon after her sophomore season with the Tigers. Wilkerson was a key part of the Tigers’ 2012 National Championship, leading the team with 14 home runs, a .358 average and 43 RBI. The Hogansville, Ga., native smashed 14 home runs again in 2013.
Carter also joins UTC as a JUCO transfer. Carter, from Maple Valley, Wash., played her first two seasons for North Idaho where she set the career home run record with 38 in two seasons. The 2013 Regional All-Tournament selection transfers in as a catcher and infielder.
Freshmen joining the Mocs representing the newest recruiting class include Savannah Goldsmith (Ringgold, Ga.), Liana Rodrigues (Chattanooga, Tenn.) and Jesslyn Stockard (Ringgold, Ga.). Both Goldsmith and Stockard signed out of Heritage High School and were teammates with the Generals under Head Coach Steve Chattin. Rodrigues joins the Mocs from the Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences where she recorded a 0.35 ERA in her final season with the Patriots.
The roster is announced just as Chattanooga hosts the 2013 Lady Moc RBI Club Fall Classic at Frost Stadium Friday, Oct. 4 - Sunday, Oct. 6. The third annual event is sponsored by the UTC RBI Club and is a fundraiser benefitting the UTC softball program. Admission for the event is $5 per day as fans watch 14 games played at Frost Stadium and a selected field at Warner Park. The RBI Classic schedule is as follows:
Friday, Oct. 4th
- Frost Stadium
1 p.m. - Chatt State vs. Gadsden State
3 p.m. - Cleveland State vs. Gadsden State
5 p.m. - Cleveland State vs. Chattanooga
7 p.m. - Chatt State vs. Chattanooga
Saturday, Oct. 5th
- Frost Stadium - Warner Park Field #1
10 a.m. - Roane State vs. Chattanooga 10 a.m. - Bryan vs. Chatt State
12 p.m. - Shorter vs. Chatt State 12 p.m. - Bryan vs. Roane State
2 p.m. - Shorter vs. Chattanooga
4 p.m. - Bryan vs. Chattanooga 4:30 p.m. - Roane State vs. Shorter
Sunday, Oct. 6th
- Frost Stadium
2 p.m. - Gadsden State vs. Chattanooga
4 p.m. - Gadsden State vs. Chattanooga