#9 South Carolina Softball 2019 Preview

South Carolina Gamecocks
Overall Rank: #9
Conference Rank: #5 SEC
South Carolina Logo
Coming off one of their most successful seasons in program history, the expectations are high for South Carolina. Last year they reached their second ever Super Regional after successfully navigating through the Columbia Regional. They lost by a score of 5-2 twice against Arizona State at the Tempe Super Regional, but it was a great season for the Gamecocks. And with a vast majority of the key players returning, this could be the year South Carolina reaches the Women’s College World Series.
2018: 49-17, 15-9
2018 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Beverly Smith
Key Departed Players:
Alyssa VanDerveer, C, .262 BA, 14 HR, 40 RBI
Key Returning Players:
Mackenzie Boesel, IF, .360 BA, 8 HR, 47 RBI
Kenzi Maguire, IF, .315 BA, 32 RBI, 11 SB
Kennedy Clark, OF, .279 BA, 5 HR, 27 RBI
Cayla Drotar, P/UTL, .268 BA, 10 HR, 32 RBI, 2.25 ERA, 21-7 W/L, 177.2 IP, 62 SO
Jana Johns, IF, .256 BA, 6 HR, 39 RBI
Alyssa Kumiyama, IF, .235 BA, 10 HR, 38 RBI
Kelsey Oh, P, 1.02 ERA, 14-5 W/L, 138.2 IP, 135 SO
Dixie Raley, P, 2.09 ERA, 14-5 W/L, 117.0 IP, 106 SO
With a trio of proven pitchers returning to the circle, South Carolina should be able to pick up right where they left off last season. Kelsey Oh had a superb freshman campaign, going 14-5 with a 1.02 ERA. Dixie Raley also went 14-5 and boasted a 2.09 ERA. It was Cayla Drotar who spent the most time in the circle, tallying 177.2 innings pitched. Drotar is not a dominating pitcher, but she proved to be very effective. Drotar is also effective at the plate where she belted ten homeruns with 32 RBIs. Mackenzie Boesel, Kennedy Clark, Jana Johns and Alyssa Kumiyama also bring plenty of power to the plate. This is a team that ranked second in the SEC in home runs per game with nearly one per contest. With players like Kenzi Maguire getting on base consistently, this is a Gamecocks offense that can score in bunches. Winning a conference title in the brutal SEC may be asking too much, but do not be surprised to see South Carolina hosting another regional and making another serious push towards the WCWS.
Projected Postseason: NCAA Softball Tournament