“Take me out to the ballgame. Take me out to the crowd.” Yep, it is that time again. Spring sports practice has begun and Brownfield Lady Cub Softball is getting ready to kick off their 2020 campaign in their brand new ballpark.
Lady Cub Head Softball Coach Jeff Fabila stated, “Oh man! It is just amazing. We have needed this new field forever.” The new field is located just down the street from the current softball field, Franco Field. This new field is adjacent to the baseball field and is built on a portion of the Cub Stadium parking lot. This puts all the Spring Sports all right there together, which is great if you are wanting to catch some baseball and softball and they are playing at the same time. It will be just an easy walk between the two to see what is going on in both places.
“Franco Field really served us well,” stated Fabila. “It was good when we were just starting out, but our program has grown and the caliber of athletes we have has improved, as well. We needed a great venue to show off the Lady Cub talent we have.” Fabila feels that the timing was right on the new field, as it will be a good chance to showcase the quality of talent the Lady Cub Softball program has right now.
The Lady Cubs held their first real practice on Saturday, January 25th and Fabila and his coaching staff had 24 girls show up, with 12 returning veterans. “When you have that many returners coming back, it makes practice much easier. They know the drills and are eager to teach them to the new girls,” stated Fabila. There should be anywhere from seven to nine players show up for softball following basketball season, according to Fabila.
“We look to have the numbers out there, for sure, ” stated Fabila. “It is just going to be a matter of finding the right chemistry on the field.” With the new ballpark, excitement is high among the squad.
As far as Fabila’s staff, Coach Kylee Valenzuela will be manning the Junior Varsity duties, while Tate Rhodes will be Fabila’s assistant on Varsity. “These coaches are great and we have been together a while. We know how things are supposed to work.”
The new ballpark is set to have its Grand Opening Celebration on Tuesday, February 17th with the home opener against Lubbock Trinity. There are lots of exciting things planned for that day, so look for more details as the date draws closer. The softball field is going to be “state of the art” in every category, according to Fabila and much of it should be finished up by the end of this week. “They have told me that almost everything should be in place by the end of this week. We are excited to see the finished product,” Fabila said proudly as he gazed across the field. “It is really going to be a thrill for the girls to get to compete in this type a facility as their home field.”
The Lady Cubs will be co-hosting a tournament this year with Seminole March 5- 7 with about 22 teams taking the field. Next year, the Ladies have plans to host their own tournament with 40 – 50 teams participating. This tourney will utilize the new Brownfield Sports Complex ball fields.
Looking ahead to District competition, Fabila feels like the Lady Cubs will be right in the mix for a playoff berth. “Slaton is always good. Abernathy was District Champion and we expect them to still be really good. This year, virtually every team in our district has their pitching back, so we know it will be a dogfight to the end.”
It is going to be fun and it is going to be great to sit at that new ballpark and watch the Lady Cubs compete. What a great time to be a Cub!