The Cal State Fullerton softball team and reigning Big West champions released its schedule for the upcoming 2020 season, set to kick off Feb. 6.
The Titans finished the 2019 season with a record of 38-18, going 18-3 in the conference and were crowned the Big West champions for the fourth consecutive year.
CSUF is scheduled to endure yet another grueling schedule this season, facing 10 teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2019 and 11 that come from a Power Fiveconference, formed by the ACC, the SEC, the Big 10, the Big 12 and the Pac-12.
The women will open up the season at home to host their first tournament, the annual Titan Classic, from Feb. 6 to Feb. 9. Over the span of three days, the Titans will face five teams including Middle Tennessee, San Jose State, Utah State, Pacific and Loyola Marymount.
Last season, CSUF went 4-1 in the Titan Classic, falling only to Louisville, 9-0, in the third game of the weekend. They were able to bounce back with a win against Utah State and closed out the tournament strong with a 8-0 win over Pacific in six innings.
The Titans close out their sixth tournament of the 2020 season just before beginning conference play on March 12 at the Easton Invitational. They will face four teams over the course of the weekend including Boston University, Sacramento State, Harvard and Cal Baptist.
In between tournaments and conference play, the Titans face tough competition including national champions UCLA. The team has not beaten UCLA since February of 2013 where they topped the Bruins 11-5. Last season, the Titans lost 5-1 on the road.
Conference play begins at home for the Titans as they take on rivals Long Beach State beginning on March 28. Long Beach State finished fourth in the Big West conference last season with a record of 25-25, 12-9 in the conference.
CSUF will travel to face last season’s second place team Hawaii on May 1 before closing out the season at home against UC Davis on Friday May 8 and 9. The Titans swept Hawaii in three games last season followed by a series against UC Davis where they went 2-1.
The team is anticipating the return of eight of their nine starters from last season including sophomore Dani Martinez, the third player awarded Big West Freshman Pitcher of the Year in program history. She ended the season with a conference-leading seven awards.
Senior and two-time recipient of the All-Big West Second Team honors Julia Valenzuela racked up 29 hits last season coupled with six multi-hit-games.
The schedule release coincides with National Signing Day for Southern California athletes in which the Titans signed eight incoming players from local high schools.
The first signee of the day was infielder Hannah Becerra from Diamond Bar, followed by fellow infielders Kaitlynn Humphreys from Corona, Peyton Toto from Roseville and America Ramirez from Oxnard. The Titans also signed pitcher and infielder Ellie Zellien from Temple City, catcher Val Ornelas from Madera, utility player Katelyn Olson from Chino, and outfielder Bailey Wallace from Alpine.