Three Lineups To Watch In 2021
The 2021 college softball season is quickly approaching, which means the best NCAA softball talent out there will be back in action before we know it. The electricity of the college softball season is expected to be on another level this year, especially in the batter's box.
While there will be several explosive lineups to watch this season, we expect three particular offenses in the Pac-12 to stand out above the rest. Take a look at those three teams below.
In 2020: Posted a 1.093 team OPS, ranked No. 1 nationally in slugging percentage
ASU’s lineup is stacked from top to bottom, featuring five players who posted an OPS above 1.000 last season. One of those players is returning senior Kindra Hackbarth, who hit .443/.500/.795 with a team high 39 hits and 10 stolen bases in 2020. Kindra’s sister, Maddi, also made a splash in 2020, batting .354/.394/.835 with a team high nine home runs. The team also ranked third nationally in scoring with 226 runs in 29 games and fourth in home runs with 50.
In 2020: Posted a 1.047 team OPS, ranked No. 2 nationally in team batting average (.368)
UCLA has an exciting lineup in 2021, including redshirt junior Aaliyah Jordan and redshirt freshman Maya Brady (.356/.443/.699). Jordan has impacted the UCLA lineup since her freshman year, leading the team in batting average, hits, home runs and RBI. Not much has changed going into 2021, as she’s coming off a slash line of .435/.552/.710 and tied for second nationally in doubles in 2020. Brady posted 356/.443/.699 with a team leading seven home runs in her true freshman campaign before it was cut short.
In 2020: Posted a .929 team OPS with 30 total home runs
Arizona had a strong lineup in 2020, but will be playing in 2021 with redshirt senior Dejah Mulipola, who redshirted in 2020 to train with Team USA for the Olympics. In 2019, Mulipola hit .305/.463/.760 with a career high 23 home runs (T-4 nationally). All of Arizona’s seniors will be returning, including Jessie Harper and Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza. Harper, who hit .395/.489/.829, led the team in batting average (.395), home runs (10) and RBI (29). Palomino-Cardoza hit .373/.490/.773 and reached base in 24 out of the 25 games Arizona played last season.