CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Shaw University softball has been picked to finish 10th in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Preseason Poll announced by the league office on Wednesday, Jan. 30. The Lady Bears roster will feature some veteran leadership with four seniors, but also have an influx of new talent with six first-year freshman players in 2019.
Last season, Shaw finished 12-20 overall and 8-8 in the CIAA, making its first appearance in the CIAA tournament for the first time in seven seasons under the leadership of former head coach DiShondra Goree. The Lady Bears hit .314 as a team last year with seven home runs and posted a .941 fielding percentage on the defensive end.
Key players returning this season for Shaw will be senior Kiana Rogers (Fort Atkinson, WI) who led the Lady Bears with a .398 batting clip with 35 hits, 25 RBI's, 21 runs, five doubles, three triples and one home run. Defensively, Rogers accounted for .950 fielding percentage – collecting 59 putouts, 17 assisted on 80 chances.
Other notables to lead the charge for Shaw will be seniors Christine Ngeve (Greensboro, NC), Taija Bailey (Greensboro, NC) and Alexandra Masnica (Chicago, IL) who is returning from a season-ending injury in 2018.
Now under the leadership of Christina Coleman, a new era for Shaw softball will begin when the Lady Bears open the 2019 season on Feb. 16 with a doubleheader at Newberry College beginning at 1 p.m.
Please see below for the 2019 CIAA Softball Predicted Order of Finish:
3. Bowie State
4. Virginia State
5. Johnson C. Smith
6. Virginia Union
7. Saint Augustine's
8. Winston-Salem State
9. Fayetteville State
11. Elizabeth City State
12. Lincoln (Pa.)
For the most up-to-date information on Shaw softball and its 13 varsity sport teams, please visit www.shawbears.com.