Saturday, December 15, 2012

The MAAC's Newest Teams

Yesterday the MAAC announced the expansion of the conference, welcoming Quinnipiac and Monmouth to the fold. Both schools have solid softball programs, and will begin competition as full fledged members of the MAAC in the 2014 season. Here's a brief look at the two newcomers.

2012 Quinnipiac Bobcats

Quinnipiac is coached by Germaine Fairchild, who has won 276 games during her 12 year career with the Bobcats. The team has won 32 games in each of their previous two seasons; and have participated in seven NEC tournaments.Quinnipiac plays fellow Connecticut school Fairfield every year in a home and home series; that rivalry will really heat up beginning in 2014.

QU's Ashley Heiberger slides against Fairfield's Lauren Liseth. The two Connecticut based teams are already very familiar with each other.
2012 Monmouth Hawks
The Monmouth Hawks are coached by Louie Berndt, who completed her third season with the school in 2012. She's a coach with lots of experience however, spending a decade as associate head coach at Florida State where she helped that team to two World Series appearances. She has notched 75 wins in her three years at Monmouth, leading the Hawks to two NEC tournament appearances in that time. Monmouth has made a total of 15 NEC tournaments. In 2014, MAAC fans will get a chance to watch reigning NEC Player Of The Year Kaitie Schumacher, who will be a senior that season.

NEC POY Kaitie Schumacher hit .388 in 2012
Although no announcement has yet been made, it is likely that the MAAC conference schedule will be expanded to 20 games. Hopefully the tournament field will also be expanded. In my opinion, the inclusion of these two programs will raise the level of play in the softball MAAC.

Quinnipiac vs. Monmouth, 2012 NEC Tournament  

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