SAN ANTONIO (Dec. 5, 2019) – The Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) softball team released its 2020 schedule and is preparing for its 11th season.
OLLU finished sixth in the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) last season with a 15-21 overall record and 8-13 RRAC tally.
Head Coach Bruce Lenington commented on the upcoming season saying, "We are excited to announce a very ambitious schedule for the 2020 season. Weather permitting, the 47-game campaign features three tournaments, 17 home games and six dates with opponents who have received national recognition. I am confident that this will allow us the opportunity to grow as we pursue an RRAC title."
Lenington is the new head coach for the Saints this season. He took over the team on July 28 and is the fourth head coach in OLLU history.
He led NAIA's Lawrence Tech University (LTU) to a postseason berth in 2016, making them the first LTU program to reach that feat. From there, he came to Texas and worked with the University of the Incarnate Word for one season.
Recently he worked with the softball staff at NCAA D1 Michigan State in 2018, primarily overseeing hitting and overall defense.
The Saints have played six different schools this fall season. Scrimmages included games against Trinity Valley Junior College, Frank Phillips College, Trinity University, Texas A&M International University, Lamar State College-Port Arthur and 2018 NJCAA D1 champions Temple College.
The Saints finished their fall schedule with a scrimmage against the University of Texas at San Antonio on Nov. 1.
The Saints open the 2020 season in Denton, Texas, in a doubleheader against Texas Women's University on Feb. 13. This will be the first meeting between the two schools.
Following the opening games, the Saints head home for their first game at OLLU in 2020. They will host Sul Ross State University on Feb. 15 for a doubleheader. The Saints have never faced Sul Ross State prior to the doubleheader.
OLLU will leave for another road trip, this time in Georgetown, Texas, against Southwestern University. The Saints have faced the Pirates 20 times and are 7-12-1 against them. The Saints have dropped three straight games to Southwestern.
The Saints will host St. Edward's University for a doubleheader on Feb. 22 and another doubleheader against the University of Southwest (27-13) on Feb. 28 and a single game on Feb. 29. The doubleheader against SEU will be the first meeting between the schools.
The three games against Southwest will be the Saints' first conference matchup. Southwest finished second to last in the RRAC last season with a 9-30 overall record and 7-15 in conference play.
OLLU will travel to Victoria, Texas, to take on the RRAC regular season defending champion the University of Houston-Victoria Jaguars (12-26) for three games. The games will include a doubleheader on March 13 and a single game on March 14.
Victoria finished 33-11 overall and 18-3 in RRAC play last season. The Saints fell in all three games last season against the Jaguars.
The Saints return home to face Texas Southern University (6-12) in a single game on March 17. TSU is part of the NCAA D1 Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) and finished with a conference-best 16-1 SWAC record last season.
Following that game, the Saints will head to Hawkins, Texas, to take on conference foe Jarvis Christian College (12-3) for a single game on March 20 and a doubleheader on March 21. The Bulldogs finished fourth in the RRAC last season with a 17-22 overall record and 12-11 in conference play.
On March 24 OLLU will host Schreiner University for a single game. The Saints have been successful against the Mountaineers during their 14-game span (12-2) and haven't lost to them since 2014.
The Saints continue their homestand with three games against LSU-Alexandria, who placed third in the RRAC last season. OLLU is 2-21 against the Generals and look to take the series with a doubleheader on March 27 and a single game on March 28.
OLLU travels to Texarkana, Texas, to take on Texas A&M University – Texarkana with a game on April 3 and a doubleheader on April 4. The Eagles joined the RRAC in 2016 and are currently tied with the Saints 3-3 in the all-time series. Texarkana had an impressive season last year and finished second in the RRAC.
The Saints come home for a doubleheader against crosstown opponent Trinity University (10-8) on April 7. The Tigers finished fifth in the SCAC standings last season with a 17-23 overall record.
The Saints' last two matchups of the season are against RRAC opponents Huston-Tillotson University (25-11) and Texas College. OLLU will be in Austin, Texas, for a single game on April 17 and a doubleheader on April 18 against Huston-Tillotson. The Rams finished just two games above the Saints in the RRAC last season.
The games against Texas College will be the last homestand for the Saints. The Saints have dominated the matchup by going 31-2 since they started playing the Steers back in 2010.
After the regular season is done, the RRAC Tournament will be hosted by LSU-Alexandria in Alexandria, La. The tournament lasts from May 1-3 with the top six teams in the conference qualifying. The Saints finished as semifinalists last season.
The NAIA national softball opening round takes place on campus sites from May 11-13. The Saints won the RRAC Tournament and advanced to the opening round in 2014 under then-head coach James Kling. They were also RRAC regular-season champions.
The NAIA national softball championship will be played in Springfield, Mo., lasting from May 21-27.
The Saints welcome John Paul as the "Voice of the Saints" for his first season. Michael Thompson, the live-streaming "Voice of the Saints," will return to call all home games that are broadcasted on the OLLU Saints Network.
Be sure to follow the Saints on social media and utilize #OLLUSoftball.