Jan. 31, 2005
Following is a series of weekly notes and quotes on Seminoles.com examining each Florida State softball player, position-by-position. Twice a week until the season opens on Feb. 9, we’ll preview a different position. Today: Catchers
With the loss of four-year starter and 2003 NFCA third team All-American Elisa Vasquez to graduation, two Seminoles will share time behind the plate depending on situations. The most likely starter will be junior BillieAnne Gay and freshman Melissa Wood will also compete for playing time.
Around The Horn-
Gay started in 26 contests last year and worked in a battery with Jessica van der Linden as the All-America pitcher continually praised Gay for the amazing transformation of van der Linden’s pitching in 2004. Gay was perfect behind the plate last year with a 1.000 fielding percentage in 330 chances and led FSU with a .583 stolen base allowed (SBA) percentage as she pegged 10 of the 24 runners that tested her arm.
Wood, a native of Lilburn, Ga., is cited as having great power at the plate and a will to win. Coaches believe she’ll be a big factor at FSU for the next four years. Wood was a three-time GACA All-State selection at Parkview High School in Georgia and she hit .435, slugged .710, and posted an on-base percentage of .728 as a senior.
According To Coach Graf:
“I think defense is one of our strongest points, and we have a great group of starters and back-ups at every position. We will have to replace an outstanding senior in Elisa Vasquez …but I feel confident in the players we have that they will step up to the challenge.
“Behind the plate we have BillieAnne Gay and freshman Melissa Wood. BillieAnne is a very intelligent catcher and she works very well with the pitchers. Melissa brings power to the lineup and is very willing to learn. The pitchers may throw to different catchers because it just depends on different situations.”