New Fence is the Gateway to Conference Play

Melanie Quintanilla, Reporter

The installment of a new fence around Anderson Field has brought the  space up to code, and it meets the requirements of a regulation softball field.

“Getting the new fence was very important for the softball team and the softball program as whole. We can host sanctioned events here at Misericordia University. Previously, we could not host the MAC Conference Championships because we did not have a regulation fence ,” said Kristi Seiler, senior captain and medical imaging major.

Seiler said the university may now  place bids to host for future championship rounds. “This is great not only for our program but also for our school. It is a great privilege to host, and doing so would provide the opportunity for many people to see our beautiful campus,” said Seiler.

This new upgrade will provide  outfielders and infielders safety as they  to field their positions.

“Outfielders will be able to feel when the fence is near with the help of the warning track while also not having to worry about tripping and or falling over,”  said Megan Hardy, senior captain and speech and language pathology major.

The old barrier was fragile and the support poles would often come loose, Hardy said.

“With a temporary fence, the outfielders were more at risk for injury, this being because they could flip over it or fall through it,” said Seiler.

Hardy said that when she used to play outfield the thought of the fence breaking was always in the back of her mind.

“This was frustrating because with all the other things going on in the game, the last thing any outfielder needs is a reason to hesitate. Now as a catcher, every deep fly ball would make me nervous because the last thing I’d ever want to see is one of our players get hurt due to the fact that we simply just did not have a real fence.”

The outfield and sideline fences will decrease the chance that balls will go out of play and there will no longer be discrepancy calls by the umpires.

“There have been many calls made throughout my three years involving the temporary fence that have affected game situations. For example, the ball was able to roll under or bounce over the temporary fence, which changes how many bases a player is allowed to advance and how many base runners are able to score. Both teams are striving to score runs whenever they can, so one can imagine how frustrating it can be for a player to be called back bases due to the ball going out of play in a close game,” said Seiler.

The fence now adds appeal to the softball field, too.

“I love the mindset of ‘look good, play good’ because I really think it helps a team go into games confident and ready to take on any opponent. The fence definitely adds to this vibe as our field now looks like a true collegiate facility. I think its presence will not only excite the players and coaches but the fans as well. I know personally I’m extremely excited for this year, but I’m also excited for the program as a whole as I know this program is on the rise in D-3 softball, and the fence is just one more step to that path of greatness we are striving for,” said Hardy.

Head coach, Jenn Probst  said that she is “so grateful to our athletic director and administration here at Misericordia University for providing us with this facility.”

Seiler called the addition “exhilarating.”

“This has been a work in progress since before I even came to Misericordia University. Coach Probst and players from years prior have been pushing for the installment of a fence for years. To play a part in making this change happen has been a great experience for me. I can’t wait to play on the updated field this year, and I hope future players can enjoy the fence for many years to come,” said Seiler.

Team members are looking forward for the games to start, and they said they do so with a renewed pride.

“I’m excited to be able to play on a field that not only looks good but feels good to play on, and one that I am extremely proud of. I can’t wait to show it off to everyone and anyone. Being able to call one of these fields my home now is something really exciting for me,” said Hardy.

Construction began less than three weeks ago, and it took about 10 days to complete.

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