Sept. 2, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Registration has closed for the 2014 University of Notre Dame softball team’s fall hitting academy due to the maximum limit of participants being reached. Players are encouraged to sign up for additional Irish instructional opportunities, which include the program’s annual fall clinic on Sept. 27 and the second annual Irish Softball Pitching Academy that will be held during the month of October at Melissa Cook Stadium.
The Irish softball coaching staff, selected as the 2014 National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Mid-Atlantic Coaching Staff of the Year, and Notre Dame team members will serve as instructors during the one-day skills clinic on Sept. 27.
The day’s instruction periods begin with “Getting More Power Out of Your Swing,” which will take place from 9-11 a.m. (ET). The offensive session will cover the necessary mechanics to crafting a more powerful and efficient swing. Hitters taking part will learn technique and drills to maximize power at the plate. All hitters are required to bring a bat and helmet to this session.
Also from 9-11 a.m. the clinic’s first defensive session, “Pitching & Catching,” will be held on field at Melissa Cook Stadium. Pitchers and catchers will learn the dynamics of being a high level player through drills that will enhance skill and pitch development. During the session, pitchers and catchers will not be inter-mixed, so each pitcher is required to bring a catcher. Catchers are required to bring their own catchers gear.
A second offensive session will follow from 11:15 a.m.-1:15 p.m., with “Irish Hitting Practice – Get the Most Swing for Your Time.” Hitters will work through two designed one-hour practice sessions that Notre Dame players use during in-season practice. All participants will engage in drill and live situational work to create individual practice plans to get the most out of their swing. Hitters are required to bring their own bat and helmet, and it is recommended that all players wear softball pants and be prepared to slide during live situational work.
The final instructional period of the clinic, “Irish Defensive Practice,” will round out the day’s schedule from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Players at all positions will experience a designed defensive practice plan that the Irish softball team uses during game preparation. Each position group will engage in specific fundamentals and drills, while also taking part in team related drills to enhance defensive skill development. All players are required to bring a glove. Catchers are asked to bring their own catchers gear.
All four clinic sessions are $75 per session, with checks payable to Notre Dame Softball. To register, please fill out the clinic registration form and waiver under the `Schedule’ tab on the softball page at UND.com, and return along with payment to: University of Notre Dame Softball, 209 Joyce Center, Notre Dame, Ind. 4556, ATT: Kris Ganeff.
Notre Dame head coach Deanna Gumpf and volunteer assistant coach Jamie Spitale will provide three separate 90-minute instructional periods on consecutive weeks (one week will be skipped due to the NCAA recruiting calendar) during the second edition of the Irish Softball Pitching Academy, designed for players looking to improve their pitching skills and drill development during the offseason.
Players will learn through lecture, video analysis and drill work to maximize both the physical and mental aspects of pitching.
Sessions will be offered Wednesday nights beginning on Oct. 8 (Oct. 8, Oct. 15 and Oct. 29). All instructional periods will run from 6-7:30 p.m. (ET) on field at Melissa Cook Stadium. Players of all ages are encouraged to register, and will be grouped according to age within each academy session.
Gumpf is the second winningest head coach in Notre Dame softball/baseball history with 549 career victories. She has mentored a total of eight BIG EAST Conference Pitchers of the Year, one pitcher who was named BIG EAST Player of the Year, four NFCA All-America pitchers and 15 pitchers who have received NFCA all-region recognition.
Spitale, in her first season as the Notre Dame volunteer assistant coach, previously served on the coaching staff at Western Michigan University from 2000-13 and was elevated to the title of associate head coach in July of 2005. During Spitale’s tenure as the primary pitching coach at Western Michigan, Bronco pitchers secured 11 total all-Mid-American Conference (MAC) accolades, including nine first team selections.
The total cost of the Irish Softball Pitching Academy is $175.00 per player for the entire three-week session. Each player is required to bring their own catcher, and sessions are limited to 24 players per night. Payment must be made in full, and the academy fee is non-refundable.
For more information, and to register for the pitching academy, contact Notre Dame associate softball coach Kris Ganeff at Ganeff.firstname.lastname@example.org.