Under new coach Otis Yelverton, Contra Costa College’s softball team managed to turn its program around in 2012.
After finishing 0-28 in 2011, the Comets were able to move forward in 2012 as the squad went 13-20 overall, 9-11 in the Bay Valley Conference.
“The team showed a lot of camaraderie this season,” said Yelverton, who also served as the Comet football team’s defensive coordinator. “I’m very satisfied with the team. They had their share of ups and downs this year, but they were a determined group of young ladies.”
Prior to the season, the softball team was left without a coach after Ed Miller decided to take over equipment manager duties last semester.
To make matters worse for the squad, players were uncertain of returning or playing for CCC in 2012 due to the team’s struggles in the previous season.
“I wasn’t going to play this season due to last year,” sophomore outfielder Myeshia Ellison said. “(The 2011 season) killed me. I never played on a team that had that many losses and it messed me up mentally.”
Yelverton, who took over coaching in January, was able to recruit 14 players to come play for CCC, using a combination of former Comet players and incoming freshmen.
Throughout the season, hitting was CCC’s strength as the team led the BVC in batting average (.364), while Ellison (.441) and first baseman Kelsey Leintz (.463) anchored the squad by finishing in the top three individual hitters in the conference.
Despite the team’s success at the plate, CCC struggled closing out games in which it was ahead, losing nine games in the last inning.
“The team was not used to winning in clutch situations,” Yelverton said. “They would get nervous during crucial moments of the game and wouldn’t have the confidence to win the game.”
Although the squad did not make the playoffs, Yelverton said he is proud to have established a new standard for the softball program and is excited for next season.