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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Six ‘Cats invited to U.S. national team selection

    UA senior Sam Banister prepares to touch home plate after hitting one of her two three-run home runs during a 10-8 Arizona win against ASU on Friday at Hillenbrand Stadium. Banister, along with much of the rest of the team, has been fighting through injuries for most of the season.
    UA senior Sam Banister prepares to touch home plate after hitting one of her two three-run home runs during a 10-8 Arizona win against ASU on Friday at Hillenbrand Stadium. Banister, along with much of the rest of the team, has been fighting through injuries for most of the season.

    The invitations for the USA National Softball Team have been sent out, and the lineup is littered with Wildcats. Six Arizona players, including alumnae Jennie Finch and Caitlin Lowe, have been invited to participate in the one-week selection camp. The active players invited are Brittany Lastrapes, K’lee Arredondo, Stacie Chambers and Jenae Leles.

    “”It’s a great opportunity for anyone to represent their country,”” said UA head Coach Mike Candrea. “”It’s always an honor to put on that uniform. I’m very excited for anyone who gets to do that.””

    The selection camp takes place during the summer in Chula Vista, Calif., from June 8 to 12. The camp includes drill work and games before the selection takes place.

    The national team selects players to participate in the World Cup of Softball in Oklahoma City, Okla., July 16-20. The World Cup of Softball includes the top four finishers from the 2008 Olympics.

    “”It’s really exciting to try out with those athletes,”” Lastrapes said. “”It’s going to be nice to have friends to talk to.””

    Candrea, who has coached Team USA, was confident softball would eventually return to the Olympic Games after the sport was cut from the 2012 Games in London. Candrea didn’t speculate if he would come out of retirement to coach the team.

    “”I don’t know,”” he said. “”Not at this point.””

    Injury update

    No. 10 Arizona is fighting through many injuries. Senior Laine Roth did not play over the weekend due to an injured hand. Sam Banister replaced her at first base, and it is not known when Roth will return.

    Also out of the lineup during the weekend was designated player Lini Koria, who is having wrist and hand issues. This moved freshmen Kristen Arriola to the DP position and gave Victoria Kemp the chance to fill the spot at second base Saturday against ASU.

    “”I think at this time of the year, any softball player is banged up a little bit,”” Candrea said. “”If you’re playing everyday, you’re never going to feel 100 percent.””

    Lastrapes has played the entire season with a stress fracture in her foot. She wears a brace in practice, and will continue to battle the injury throughout the season.

    Arredondo has returned to play for Arizona after fighting an ankle injury earlier this season.

    Restless ‘Cats

    After being forced to halt their second game against No. 5 ASU this weekend, the Wildcats are anxious to get back to the field.

    “”We all were so ready,”” Lastrapes said. “”We wanted to play.””

    The game ended in the third inning due to rain. The team was so ready to play that they even helped the grounds crew pull out the tarp. When it was announced that the game had been called, the crowd saw a dugout of disappointed Wildcats. The matchup between Arizona and ASU has been rescheduled to continue when Arizona visits the Sun Devils in Tempe on April 29 at 5 p.m. This forces a double header between the two teams, with another game scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

    “”I didn’t like how we had to be delayed against ASU,”” Leles said.

    The Wildcats will welcome No. 2 Stanford and No. 17 California to Hillenbrand Stadium over the weekend. With no rain in the forecast, the Wildcats look to return to a full weekend of action beginning Friday at 7 p.m.

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