Aug. 15, 2013
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - Following a season short circuited by injuries, the Boston University softball program aims to challenge for a Patriot League crown when it plays its first season in the League in the spring of 2014.
Kathryn Gleason, a very familiar name among softball circles and a coaching stalwart for many years in the Northeast, enters her second season at the helm looking to improve on last year's 21-26-1 showing.
The first League series BU will play comes against the defending champions. Army will host the Terriers on the weekend of March 29-30, 2014.
Below, take a look at quick facts for Boston University softball and five questions with Head Coach Kathryn Gleason. For the BU softball home page, go here
Boston University Softball Quick FactsOverall Record - 753-483-3
First Season - 1988
America East championships - 9 ('92, '93, '96, '97, '02, '03, '09, '10, '12)
NCAA Tournament appearances - 6 ('96, '02, '03, '09, '10, '12)
Head Coach - Kathryn Gleason (second season, 21-26-1)
Home field - BU Softball Field (Natural grass and dirt; 500)
Five Questions with Kathryn Gleason
Q: How is the Patriot League a good fit for the softball program at BU?
A: The Patriot League is a good fit for our BU Softball Program and the entire BU Athletic Department, because we believe in the vision and mission of the Patriot League. The BU Athletic Department, like the Patriot League, is dedicated to the academic and personal growth of student-athletes. We are excited and honored to compete against those same institutions who share our vision of providing athletic opportunities for those highly distinguished students in the classroom. Patriot League softball has been strong, and we are excited to grow and raise the level of play on the field and raise the recognition of our conference, by committing to raising the RPI and exposing our athletes to playing on the national level.
Q: What challenges does a new conference schedule provide for you and your staff?
A: A new conference schedule is actually an exciting challenge for our team and our staff. We are excited to compete against different teams, as well as visiting different cities and campuses within the Patriot League. Of course, we are also excited and privileged to showcase Boston University and the city of Boston, to all the Patriot League members. We will do our research as a staff to quickly become familiar with the Patriot League teams and coaches. Several teams have new coaching staffs as well, in the past two years, so we will honor the tradition of the conference and grow together to build the Patriot League brand and recognition throughout the country.
Q: Last season was your first as the head coach at BU. Looking back, how did it go compared to what your expectations were going in?
A: The expectations I came in with as a first year head coach, was not the reality of what transpired over the year. Spending 15 years as an assistant coach prepared me for the job, but I do not think you can be fully prepared for the head coaching role until you take on that challenge. We were presented with many injuries and challenges throughout the year, and I believe it was a learning process for both the players and my staff. My expectations for this program are very high, because of the great tradition this BU Softball program has worked hard to get and now maintain and take it to the next level. BU Athletics has high expectations for all its student-athletes. We are very proud to accept those expectations and to represent BU and now the Patriot League. There are challenges that come with every day in every season, but we are committed to achieving on the field, in the classroom and in the community.
Q: You have six freshmen and eight newcomers overall for next season, and they'll be arriving on campus soon. What's most important when acclimating incoming student-athletes?
A: We are excited to welcome our eight newcomers to campus in September. I believe the most important thing to getting them acclimated is to put them into our family environment as soon as possible. It is also important for them to get on the field as well. It is where they might be most comfortable, so introducing them to the rest of the team and getting them to get to know each other on and off the field will be our top priority in the Fall.
Q: You bring back a lot of talent from last year's team, including America East Player of the Year Jayme Mask and all-conference selections Brittany Clendenny and Megan Volpano. How crucial is the leadership from those seniors as you embark on your first season in the Patriot League?
A: We bring back a very talented class of five in the senior class, who all started, or played significant innings for us in the starting lineup. Their leadership will be crucial to our success this year entering the Patriot League. They have won conference titles and have played in the NCAA tournament. We will look to them to acclimate the newcomers and share their experiences in the BU Softball program on and off the field. They are all tremendous athletes, as well as tremendous students. I will rely on them a lot this year to lead this team into a new era of BU Softball.