Broncos Kick Off 2014 at Kajikawa Classic
Rebecca Patton started 28 games last season

Feb. 6, 2014

Season Preview Interview | Boise State Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader | Utah Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Boise State softball opens the 2014 season at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz. The Broncos will play five games over three days beginning Friday (Feb. 8). It is the second-straight year Boise State has opened its season at the Kajikawa Classic.

The Broncos will take on Utah (10 a.m. MT) and Creighton (12:30 p.m. MT) Friday to kick off the season.

The tournament continues Saturday, with games against power-conference foes North Carolina State (3 p.m. MT) and Northwestern (8 p.m. MT). It is the first meeting NC State, the defending ACC Tournament champion. Boise State defeated the Wildcats at last year's Kajikawa Classic in the first meeting between the teams.

Competition wraps up Sunday with a showdown against No. 8 Oregon. This marks the fifth-consecutive year the teams have played each other. The Broncos also faced Oregon on the final day of the Kajikawa Classic last season. The Ducks hold a 7-0 advantage in the all-time series.

Live stats will be available for select games. Check the schedule page at BroncoSports.com for more information.

About the Broncos
Boise State softball enters its sixth season with a wealth of experience. The Broncos return nine starters among 15 returning letterwinners from a year ago.

Seniors Devon Bridges and Mackenzie Whyte are four-year starters, combining for 307 starts in their career. Bridges, Boise State's career home run leader, is a three-time all-conference selection. Whyte will hold down shortstop for the fourth season. Fellow senior Tara Glover joined the Broncos as a sophomore and will patrol center field for the third year. Glover has been named All-MW in each of her two seasons with the Broncos, including an All-America campaign in 2012.

Broncos Picked Third in Preseason Poll
The Mountain West head coaches picked Boise State to finish third in the conference.The Broncos 42 points in the poll, checking in behind two-time defending champion San Diego State (63) and Fresno State (56). Boise State placed ahead of Colorado State (38), San Jose State (38) Nevada (36), UNLV (27), New Mexico (13) and Utah State (11). Boise State was picked to finish third in 2012 and fourth in 2013.

Strength in the Circle
Boise State returns the two pitchers who saw the most time in the circle last season for the Broncos. Redshirt senior Rebecca Patton and junior Kenzie Cole combined for 40 starts and 244.2 innings pitched. Patton made 28 starts for Boise State last season, her Bronco debut after transferring from Cal Poly. Patton was 11-10 with a 3.39 ERA. She tossed two shutouts and was twice named Mountain West Pitcher of the Week. Cole started 12 games, but settled into a relief role during the conference season. She was 7-8 with a 4.38 ERA for the season, but in 14 relief appearances Cole was 5-0 with one save and a 2.08 ERA. Sophomore Sarah Barnes also returns after throwing 6.2 innings over four appearances. Freshman Mackenzie McGill is the only new pitcher added to the miz this season.

Base Thief
Senior Tara Glover is 45-for-50 on stolen base attempts in her Boise State career. Glover enters 2014 one steal shy of the school's career record. She set the single-season record with 18 in 2012, before breaking it again last year when she went 27-of-28 on the base paths.

Her only caught stealing of the 2013 season came after oversliding the bag at second March 24, against Tulsa. Before that she was 15-for-15, the best start to a season in school history. It snapped a string of 17-consecutive successful steals, also a school record.

Including her freshman year at Utah, Glover has stolen 61 bases. That ranks 16th in the NCAA among active student-athletes. She is fourth in Mountain West history (she was a MW student-athlete while at Utah). Her career stolen-base percentage (.897; 61-of-68) is No. 6 in the country among active players.

Record Chaser
Tara Glover enters her senior season seeking to become one of the most accomplished softball players in Mountain West history. Glover is the only Bronco to be playing her fourth season in the conference after spending her freshman year (2011) at Utah, the Utes' final season in the MW. All told, Glover is within reach of the all-time top-five lists for batting average, hits, runs, triples and stolen bases.

Among the Greats in the Game
Devon Bridges and Tara Glover enter their senior seasons already in the same breath as the top talent across the country. Bridges' 42 rank No. 5 in the NCAA among active student-athletes. Her 143 RBI are 10th on the same list. Glover is one of the nation's leaders in hits (209; No. 5), runs (135; No. 5), SB Pct. (.897; No. 6) and steals (61; No. 16).

`Mak' of All Trades
Sophomore Makenna Weir made an immediate impact last season as a freshman.  Weir hit .296, led the team with 11 doubles and drove in 31 runs. Perhaps most impressive was her versatility. She started 48 games in 2013, coming at five different positions. She started 19 games at catcher, 13 at third base, seven at second base, seven as the designated player and two in left field. Weir also started at eight different positions in the batting order.

Five Newcomers Join a Veteran Squad
Boise State welcomes five new student-athletes to the roster in 2014, four freshmen and one junior college transfer. Hailey "Buggs" Torrez comes to the Broncos with two years of athletic eligibility remaining. Torrez joins the team by way of Central Arizona Community College. Mackenzie Jackman, Libbie Jimenez, Mackenzie McGill and Izzy Serrano all enter their first year of collegiate softball. Not among the newcomers is redshirt senior Megan Harvey who returns to the Broncos this season. Harvey started 42 games as a sophomore in 2012, predominantly behind the plate.

Familiar New Faces
Boise State and the rest of the Mountain West welcomed Utah State and San Jose State to the conference at the beginning of the 2013-14 academic year. Both schools came from the Western Athletic Conference, where they were league opponents of the Broncos for the first three years of Boise State's program.

Hundred Hit Club
Three active Broncos have more than 100 hits during their Boise State careers. Devon Bridges (171) reached the milestone as a sophomore and is now 20 hits shy of the school record. Tara Glover has 209 hits during her collegiate career, 154 coming as a Bronco. Mackenzie Whyte (112) entered the century club with a three-hit game at New Mexico (April 5, 2013). Nine Broncos have compiled 100 hits in their careers.

CSM.com Pegs Two Preseason All-MW
Tara Glover and Devon Bridges were selected to the  CollegeSportsMadness.com preseason All-Mountain West teams. Bridges was tabbed as a first-team selection while Glover was projected as a second-team pick.

23 Home Games at Dona Larsen Park
Boise State will play its second season at Dona Larsen Park in 2014. The field is located at 150 South Broadway Avenue. It is also the home site for Boise State Track and Field and high school football. The Broncos posted a 10-5 home record during the park's inaugural season. This year Boise State will play host to two tournaments (March 7-9 and 14-16), plus three home conference series. The Broncos host Fresno State (March 21-23), UNLV (April 4-6), San Jose State (April 17-19) and New Mexico (May 2-4).


» «