In the next few weeks most college softball programs across the country will be taking the field for their first pre-season games of spring semester. It’s an exciting time of year for athletes, coaches and fans of fastpitch alike. We checked in on our network of NCAA programs to learn more about the upcoming season and who to check out.

In our backyard, Linfield College’s DIII softball program kicks off their season on February 19th with an away game at LaVerne College in LaVerne, California. The Linfield Wildcats continue to field a strong team of dedicated student athletes who have come together under head coach, Jackson Vaughan, to win the last 11 straight Northwest Conference championships. Can they do it again? Well, in a pre-season poll, the NWC coaches just picked the Wildcats to win the conference once again in 2015. Let’s hope it’s a harbinger of a great season for the Cats.

Across the coast in DIII fastpitch softball, the Tufts Jumbos are also looking to retain a DIII title: the NCAA DIII National Championship! The Jumbos head to Florida next month to escape the brutal Northeast weather (3 feet of snow this past week in their home of Medford, Massachusetts). Their first games (double-header) are scheduled for March 14 in Claremont, Florida against University of New England at 9 a.m. and the Coast Guard Academy at 11 a.m. They’ll continue a week of preseason games in Florida before returning to a hopefully snow-free Boston-metro at the end of March. Is another DIII National Championship in store for the Jumbos? We’ll have to wait and find out.

In DII softball, the William Jewell Cardinals take the field against Oklahoma Panhandle State University on February 15. The Cardinals, under head coach Dustin Combs, have put together some exciting seasons, battling a tough Great Lakes Valley conference. Last year they finished with a 22-14-0 record. We’re excited to see what they can do this season with returning athletes taking the lead. If you want to hear more from William Jewell athletes and their head coach, check out the Softball Chatter blog for archived and new entries from the team.

If you didn’t already have the itch to feel the dirt under you cleats and smell the fresh-cut grass, the start of the NCAA season is sure to get the excitement going. For high school and club athletes, their seasons are just beginning or will begin soon as well. Softball season is here! We’ll see you on the diamond!.

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