2010 Tennessee Volunteers Softball
Perhaps the most recognizable person on the Tennessee Volunteers Softball team isn't the 2007 NCAA player of the year, Monica Abbot, or the SEC Co-Coaches of the Year, Ralph and Karen Weekly.
The 2007 season was extremely successful for Tennessee Lady Vols Softball. The Lady Vols won their first SEC regular season softball title. After losing a disappointing game to Florida in the SEC tournament, the Lady Vols (along with Alabama) went on to represent the SEC in the Women's College World Series where they finished second -- losing to Arizona in the finals.
Senior pitcher, and four-time All American, Monica Abbott led the team to three appearances in the Women's College World Series during her four years. In 2007, she was voted the nation's top female collegiate softball player by 1,000 NCAA member schools and received the Roy F. Kramer SEC Female Athlete of the Year award.
You can read more about the 2007 Lady Vols Softball team at Pac-10 vs SEC Softball.
The Lady Vols will miss their star pitcher, but she has bigger plans. "I definitely have Olympic dreams in the future," Abbot said. "I would like to play softball for as long as I can."
Despite Abbot's departure, Lady Vols fans will be happy to know that several key players are returning for the 2008 season. Seniors Tonya Callahan and Shannon Doepking, who were named to the First-Team All-SEC, are ready to step up and assume their roles as leaders, along with other seniors Kenora Posey, Megan Rhodes, and Caitlin Ryan.
Another bright spot in the Vols' 2008 lineup is sophomore Tiffany Huff. Huff was named to the 2007 Southeastern Conference All-Tournament Team, the2007 Freshmen All-SEC team, and represented the United States on the U.S. Junior National Team in the summer of 2007.
Ralph Weekly coached the U.S. Olympic softball team in 1996 and 2000, and the Weeklys coached at The University of Tennessee --Chattanooga before coming to the University of Tennessee--Knoxville in 2002. Recruiting top athletes is a priority for the Weeklys.
"From the first time that [prospective players] meet us, they can tell it's a family atmosphere," Karen Weekly said. "It's just sort of a ready-made family for them, and I think their parents are comfortable with the fact that we're a husband and wife team."
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The tentative roster for the 2008 Tennessee Volunteers Softball Team includes:
- Baker, Tiffany 2 P/OF So. 5'6" R/R East Ridge, Tennessee
- Callahan, Tonya 35 IF Sr. 5'8" R/R Holden, Missouri
- Clay, Alexia 3 C/OF So. 5'6" R/R Rochester, Indiana
- Doepking, Shannon 11 C/IF Sr. 5'7" R/R Acton, California
- Fulmer, Allison 12 1B/DH R-Fr. 5'8" R/R Maryville, Tennessee
- Griffin, Jennifer 31 3B/DH Jr. 5'5" R/R Whittier, California
- Hammond, Lillian 17 OF Jr. 5'8" L/R Chattanooga, Tennnessee
- Horiuchi, Liane 1 SS/2B Jr. 5'5" R/R Wahiawa, Hawaii
- Huff, Tiffany 52 C/1B So. 5'7" L/R
- Saugus, California
- Kajitani, Nicole 0 IF/OF So. 5'2" R/R San Bernardino, California
- Manuma, Anita 18 UTL So. 5'7" R/R
- Ewa Beach, Hawaii
- Pieroni, Danielle 5 OF/P Jr. 5'8" L/R Madison, Tennessee
- Posey, Kenora 8 2B/SS Sr. 5'6" L/R Los Angeles, California
- Rhodes, Megan 10 P Sr. 5'7" R/R Nashville, Tennessee
- Ryan, Caitlin 9 IF/DH Sr. 6'0" R/R Knoxville, Tennessee
- Webb, Erinn 14 OF So. 5'6" L/R Hemet, California
- Weissinger, Natalee 6 IF So. 5'6" R/R Madison, Tennessee
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