Arizona softball season opener: Old faces, new faces — and lots of switching places

2013-02-07T20:00:00Z Arizona softball season opener: Old faces, new faces — and lots of switching placesBy Patrick Finley Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
February 07, 2013 8:00 pm  • 

The Arizona Wildcats will have a new starter everywhere but pitcher when they take the field for the first time today.

You can look it up.

“Oh my gosh,” said Hallie Wilson, who has moved from centerfield to first base after playing exactly one game there last year. “Wow.”

“That’s really weird,” Chelsea Goodacre, today’s designated player, said. “I never thought about that.”

Four of the team’s eight position players at today’s Kajikawa Classic in Tempe are new to the UA: University of Pacific transfer Kelsey Rodriguez (catcher) and freshmen Mandie Perez (second base), Lauren Young (third base) and Courtney Rodriguez (right field).

Another four are veterans playing new spots.

Wilson is breaking in a first baseman’s glove the Wildcats bought her two weeks ago. Alex Lavine, a reserve last year, will play her first-ever inning of collegiate centerfield, in Wilson’s place, today.

Chelsea Suitos, who appeared in 11 games in left field last year before moving to right field for 37, returns to left.

And, for the first time, Brigette Del Ponte moves from third base to replace first-team All-Pac-12 shortstop Shelby Pendley, who transferred to Oklahoma last month.

“I don’t think we’ve ever been this young, and this new,” UA coach Mike Candrea said.

Read more about the Wildcats and their season-opening tournament in Tempe in Friday's Arizona Daily Star.

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