Senior Duo Leads Team in Conference Play

Senior Outfielder Jackie Schoff (9) prepares to swing. (Nicholas Poblete/PantherNOW)

Written by Alejandro Gonzalez/Staff Writer

The FIU softball team has been going strong with a 18-12 record going into conference play.

Coming off a 8-3 win against Buffalo University, the Panthers will be out of state, but they’ll be back home to play against North Texas University  on Saturday, March 30 and Sunday, March 31.

The two players that have been performing extremely well are outfielder Jackie Schoff and pitcher Megan Kugelmann.

The senior duo has been making their last year the university as memorable as they can be.

Schoff was named to the Preseason All-Conference USA team and is leading the team in batting average with an .368 average in the season according to

Kugelmann was the first player in school history to pitch two no-hitters in the same season in 2016. She was also recently named Conference USA “Pitcher of the Week.”

Kugelmann said to Student Media that being the leader of the pitching core of the team likes to lead by example and is consistently supportive of the other pitchers on the team when they are pitching.

Throughout the years in the softball program, there have been significant changes from not having a softball field to play on, to the most recent head coaching change.

Coach Heather Gelbard took the helm during the last off-season from Coach Gator Rebhan.

“I wouldn’t want any other coach to be the head coach,” said Schoff.

Since becoming the head coach, she has put work and effort into the team.

“I definitely think [coach] Heather has done a good job in proving herself,” said Kugelmann.

Both players are veterans of the team, and they are often look at as the leaders of the pack.

“I have never really been afraid to speak but I want what’s best for every girl on this team” said Schoff on her leadership role.

The pair are looking to make a conference win this season before the end of their time at the University.

“Conference is starting now, every game is important, we just need to push through. There are a lot of new people and you know we are all tired,” said Kugelmann. “But we just need to find it within ourselves and get mentally tough.”

Feature image by Nicholas Poblete/PantherNow

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