Published Thursday, February 6, 2014 at 12:01 am / Updated at 1:09 am
SOFTBALL
Huskers open season in New Mexico

Hotel Encanto Invitational

Where: Las Cruces, N.M.

Schedule: 10:30 a.m. Friday vs. Texas-El Paso, 3 p.m. Saturday vs. Florida State, 5 p.m. Saturday vs. New Mexico State, 10 a.m. Sunday vs. Florida State

Scouting Nebraska: The Huskers open the season ranked No. 9 in the USA Today/NFCA Top 25 poll, NU’s highest preseason ranking since 2004. ... Nebraska has won 13 consecutive games at the New Mexico State Complex, dating back to 2010. The Huskers went 5-0 in Las Cruces last season en route to a 9-1 start, equaling the best 10-game start in school history. ... Nebraska returns its entire pitching staff and five position starters. ... Senior twins Tatum and Taylor Edwards make Nebraska one of seven teams with multiple All-Americans on its roster. ... Playing a tough schedule to kick off the season is nothing new for Nebraska. Last season the Huskers faced the nation’s toughest nonconference schedule. This season, they will face nine teams ranked in the preseason top 16 in their first 22 games.

Scouting Texas-El Paso: New Miners coach Tobin Echo-Hawk is a former Nebraska All-American — the first in NU coach Rhonda Revelle’s tenure. Echo-Hawk inherits a UTEP team that finished 13-35 in 2013. ... Danielle Pearson is the Miners’ top returning pitcher. She finished 2013 with a 6-14 record and a 3.80 ERA in 1562⁄3 innings. ... Erika Arcuri is UTEP’s top returning hitter, batting .347 and scoring 26 runs last spring.

Scouting Florida State: The Seminoles are the returning Atlantic Coast Conference champions and ranked 12th by USA Softball and 16th by USA Today/NFCA. ... Florida State won an NCAA regional tournament in 2013 but was just 2-11 against ranked teams, including seven shutout losses. ... Two of FSU’s top three hitters are gone, leaving Courtney Senas as the top returning hitter. Senas batted .333, scored 58 runs, hit 14 home runs and had a .646 slugging percentage. ... The Seminoles were ranked 10th nationally last season in pitching with a staff ERA of 1.82. Junior ace Lacey Waldrop is back after being named a third-team All-American in 2013.

Scouting New Mexico State: The Aggies were runner-up in the Western Athletic Conference in 2013 after finishing 37-20, including a 21-8 home record. ... Five of the Aggies’ top six hitters are back, led by Staci Rodriguez, who hit .357 with 11 doubles, 20 home runs and 63 RBIs. ... The New Mexico State pitching staff is young as ace Alex Newman has exhausted her eligibility. She appeared in all but 11 of the Aggies’ games last season and finished with a 24-13 record and a 1.88 ERA.

Contact the writer: Steve Beideck

stevebeideck63@gmail.com    |   402-618-4113    |  

Steve is a correspondent for The Omaha World-Herald and covers the Omaha Lancers and high school sports.

PHOTO GALLERY AND VIDEO »

 

< >
SPOTLIGHT »
2013 college football preview
View our 2013 college football preview, a 26-page, three-part section filled with coverage of the Huskers, Big Ten conference and more.
Big Red Bowl Retrospective
See complete historical results, game recaps and photo coverage from the Nebraska Cornhuskers college football bowl game appearances, from the 1941 Rose Bowl up to today.
Big Ten football recruits
The World-Herald's Big Ten recruiting database contains every football recruit that signed with a Big Ten school from 2002 to 2011, complete with color-coded interactive map representations, player information, high-concentrations recruiting clusters and more.
Devaney Center timeline
Check out a World-Herald timeline to see the evolution of memorable moments at the Devaney Center, complete with photos, videos, memorable quotes and more.
Follow OWHbigred on Twitter
Looking for the latest Husker sports news from The Omaha World-Herald and Omaha.com? Follow us on Twitter!
Husker scholarship distribution chart
Want to see how many scholarships NU has invested at each position? Wondering how the Huskers have appropriated their offers by class? Check out our handy chart to look further into how Bo Pelini has built his team.
Husker Signing Day 2013
The World-Herald's top-notch coverage of the Nebraska football's class of 2013, complete with videos, photos, articles, live recruit interviews, interactive components and more.
Husker turnovers: A slippery slope
Bo Pelini has coached 68 games at Nebraska. When NUís turnover margin is positive or even, the Huskers are 35-2. When they lose the turnover battle, theyíre 13-18. Why hasnít Nebraska joined the nationís elite? More than anything, itís turnovers.
Interactive: Bo Pelini's contract
View an interactive PDF of Pelini's revised contract signed by the NU football coach, complete with brief summaries of the legalese and insight into the document's finer points.
Interactive: Darin Erstad's contract (2012)
View an interactive PDF of NU baseball coach Darin Erstad's contract released in August 2012, complete with brief summaries of the legalese and insight into the document's finer points.
Interactive: Tim Miles' contract
View an interactive PDF of Tim Miles' contract signed by the Nebraska men's basketball coach on May 4, 2012, complete with brief legal explanations, comparisons to other Big Ten coaches and more.
Omaha.com's Big Ten coverage
Delivering the best news coverage and analysis of the Big Ten Conference, from Omaha.com and other top news outlets from around country.
Husker Recruiting: Changes shrink NU's sphere of influence
For decades, the Great Plains represented fertile recruiting ground for Tom Osborne's football program. Restoring that lost tradition won't be easy.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
Shoreline Golf Club
$40 for 2 Players, 18 Holes of Golf with Cart ($85 Value)
Buy Now
BRT ON TWITTER »
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT »
< >