This week we found out the ladies will be traveling south to Florida in Feburary to take on some big time programs. Here is a look at the ESPN St. Pete / Clearwater Elite Invitational opponents:
Oklahoma – 2016 and 2017 NCAA National Champions … No. 4 in final NCAA RPI last season … WCWS semifinalists a season ago
Hofstra – 41-14 in 2018, earning the No. 18 ranking in the final NCAA RPI … Eliminated by No. 1 seeded Oregon in the Eugene Regional
Utah – Eliminated UK from the 2016 Lexington Regional, will be first meeting since … Finished 20-30 last year with an RPI of 60.
Texas – 33-26 in 2018 with a final RPI of 37 … Was eliminated in the 2018 Seattle Regional
Oregon – UK's NCAA Super Regional opponent in 2017 and 2018 … Finished 2018 regular season No. 1 overall in the NCAA RPI … Participated in the WCWS, advancing to the semifinals.
James Madison – NCAA Super Regional hosts in 2017 (LSU) … Finished No. 24 in the final 2018 NCAA RPI … Winners of the Colonial Athletic Association the last five seasons.
Also this week team captians for the 2019 season. Details on the election process and the team captains was released by the UK Communications and Public Relations Team. "The voting process took place last week, with each player, coach and support staff member each getting to vote for whoever they feel should be captains before head coach Rachel Lawson makes the ultimate cut-off line and determines who will be her team leaders."
Captains at a Glance
Abbey Cheek: Senior … Inman, S.C. … 3B/UTL … 2016 SEC All-Freshman Team … SEC Player of the Week (3/20/18) … 41 career home runs, second all-time at Kentucky.
Kelsee Henson: Senior … Paducah, Ky. … OF … Led the team in batting average this fall … Hit a three-run HR in her first weekend as a college player against New Mexico … UK's top pinch runner in 2018.
Autumn Humes: Junior … Bald Knob, Ark. … P/UTL … Threw a no-hitter in her first-career start against North Dakota State … Three top-10 wins in the circle in 2018 (LSU, TAMU, Georgia) … Was the NCAA DII National Freshman of the Year with Harding University (Ark.) before transferring to UK.
Sarah Rainwater: Senior … Nicholasville, Ky. … OF … UK's best defensive outfielder … Tore her ACL on March 30 of 2018 and missed the remainder of the season … First-career triple in 2018 vs. Ohio in the John Cropp Classic
Katie Reed: Senior … St. Louis, Mo. … SS … SEC All-First Team and NFCA All-American in 2017 … 2018 All-SEC Second Team … 2018 SEC All-Defensive Team (SS) … 4.0 GPA
Jenny Schaper: Senior … St. Louis, Mo. … C … Has been UK's primary starting catcher since her freshman season … Hit a walk-off grand slam in the NCAA Lexington Regional opening round - it was her first-career grand slam as a Wildcat … Hit the game-winning HR over No. 5 UCLA in Westwood in the beginning of her sophomore season.