#24 Mississippi State Softball 2019 Preview

Mississippi State Bulldogs
Overall Rank: #24
Conference Rank: #10 SEC
 Mississippi State Logo
Mississippi State won 38 games in 2018 and brought the softball world together, especially in the Southeastern Conference, with how they played on the field on honored their teammate Alex Wilcox. Wilcox fought a courageous battle with ovarian cancer and passed away far too soon on June 25, 2018 at the age of 18. The Bulldogs also showed the sports world what is possible with how they were able to galvanize the other schools in the SEC to get behind the “No One Fights Alone” mantra to increase awareness for ovarian cancer through wearing teal throughout last spring.
2018: 38-23, 7-17
2018 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Vann Stuedeman
Key Departed Players:
Carmen Carter, OF, .281 BA, 3 HR, 21 RBI
Reggie Harrison, INF, .278 BA, 8 HR, 44 RBI
Morgan Bell, INF, .275 BA, 10 HR, 42 RBI
Holly Ward, P, 1.43 ERA, 16-9 W/L, 186.0 IP, 55 BB, 173 SO
Cassady Knudsen, P, 2.77 ERA, 13-9 W/L, 108.2 IP, 52 BB, 136 SO
Key Returning Players:
Mia Davidson, C/INF, .370 BA, 19 HR, 48 RBI
Katerria Moore, OF, .347 BA, 4 HR, 18 RBI
Emily Heimberger, UTIL, .332 BA, 0 HR, 23 RBI, 17 SB
Sarah Niu, INF, .298 BA, 6 HR, 39 RBI
Bevia Robertson, UTIL, .275 BA, 1 HR, 12 RBI, 12 SB
Emily Williams, P, 1.74 ERA, 5-1 W/L, 52.1 IP, 43 BB, 61 SO
Candace Enis, P, 3.11 ERA, 4-3 W/L, 56.1 IP, 20 BB, 46 SO
Offense should carry Mississippi State in the early stages of the season as they have some strong pieces back in the everyday lineup. Mia Davidson was the 2018 SEC Freshman of the Year as she hit .370 with 19 homeruns and 48 runs batted in. Davidson should be just as good if not better as a sophomore after having full offseason of college level strength and conditioning programs. Katerria Moore is more of a higher average with less power as she hit .347 with four homeruns. Sarah Niu and Emily Hemberger will provide a nice mix of speed and power that will lengthen the lineup in 2019. Bevia Robertson can do a little of everything as she hit .275 and stole 12 bases in 2018. Emily Williams and Candace Enis will see their workloads increase in the circle as the Bulldogs did lose their top two pitchers to graduation in Holly Ward and Cassady Knudsen. Alyssa Loza should be in the mix for the rotation after transferring over from Arizona State in the offseason. Ulufa Leilua is anoher transfer from Arizona State to keep an eye. She hit 13 homeruns as a sophomore in 2017 for the Sun Devils. Mississippi State will light up the scoreboard this spring and should be able to find enough pitching to get back to postseason in 2019.
Projected Postseason: NCAA Softball Tournament