With the success of the 2007 season in the books, the Marietta College softball team is ready for another stellar campaign in 2008. Under the direction of Jeanne Arbuckle, who will begin her 21st season as head softball coach, the Pioneers are looking to build off their most successful season in school history, which ended with an appearance in the NCAA Regional Tournament, a second place finish in the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Tournament and an overall record of 34-12.
Following the loss of four seniors, Marietta will rely heavily on its veteran junior and senior players throughout the 2008 season.
With eight returning letter winners and a host of talented freshmen and sophomores, the Pioneers are looking to make another run for the OAC title.
2007 national champion Linfield (Ore.) was voted atop the poll. No. 2 Wartburg (Iowa) and No. 3 SUNY-Plattsburg followed Linfield in the rankings with Louisiana and St. Thomas (Minn.) tying for fourth place and rounding out the Top 5.
The Pioneers are slated to take on two Preseason Top 25 teams this season; they will battle No. 14 Coe (Iowa) on March 11 while at the Rebel Spring Games and then take on rival No. 18 Muskingum in New Concord on April 1.
Marietta will open the 2008 season in Kissimmee, Fla., at the Rebel Spring Games March 9 to 14.
Its home opener is scheduled for March 25 against Wooster. The Pioneers will play eight doubleheaders at home on Marietta Field this spring. Their OAC home opener is against Otterbein on March 29.