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Irish Name Four Captains for 2020 Season

NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Notre Dame Softball Head Coach Deanna Gumpf announced Wednesday the selection of four team captains for the 2019-20 season. Seniors Katie Marino and Ellie Richards and juniors Alexis Holloway and Abby Sweet will serve as captains for the Irish this season. 

“I’m thrilled that Katie, Ellie, Abby and Alexis will be the captains of our team this season,” Gumpf said. “They have consistently shown their leadership on and off the field. Each one of them represents and upholds the standards of our program and embody the spirit of Notre Dame.”

Marino, a New Jersey native and infielder, was named second-team All-ACC and first-team NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic region in 2019, and earned ACC Co-Player of the Week honors (March 5). A science-business major and sociology minor, Marino has earned NFCA All-America Scholar-Athlete honors for each of her three completed seasons. She was named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll in 2017 and 2018, and in 2017, was named to the ACC All-Academic team. 

“I’m so grateful and honored to be a captain for the Notre Dame softball team this year,” Marino exclaimed. “This team is so special and our goal as captains is to make every individual on the team realize this. Belief is contagious. As captains, we aim to hold this team to a standard that pushes us to achieve goals this organization hasn’t been able to reach yet. 

“This team and staff are my family, and I’m so excited to work hard and make the most out of my final semester at this University,” Marino added. 

Richards, a senior infielder majoring in information technology, has suited up for the Irish since 2017. A staple on the field and in the dugout, she is known as a true teammate by her team and coaches. Richards was named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll in 2017, and is working towards a minor in innovation and entrepreneurship and a concentration in visual interface and design. A Pendleton native, she was the first Oregonian to suit up for Notre Dame in varsity softball. 

“I’m excited for this season and the great things we will accomplish as a team,” Richards shared. “As a leader, I’m going to push myself and my team to achieve our goals and to become better individuals on and off the field. Notre Dame Softball has a special place in my heart and I’m honored to be representing this team as a captain. 

“I wouldn’t want to be a part of any other team,” the senior noted. “These girls are my family.”

Holloway, a junior pitcher from Crown Point, Ind., was named to the 2018 NFCA Mid-Atlantic All-Region first team, becoming just the third Notre Dame freshman pitcher to earn first-team all-region honors in program history. She was also named to the All-ACC second team and ACC All-Freshman team in 2018. Holloway earned ACC All-Academic Team and Academic Honor Roll distinction as a freshman, and is majoring in Aerospace Engineering. 

“We are all extremely excited about the upcoming season, to say the least,” Holloway said. “Our freshman are flexible and coachable, our sophomores always bring the energy, our juniors are steady and level and our seniors are very well-established. 

“All of these different qualities result in a fantastic team that vibes well together and is ready to win a lot of games in 2020,” Holloway challenged. 

Sweet, a junior outfielder, was named to the 2019 ACC All-Tournament Team and was awarded preseason All-ACC honors last season. The Newhall, Calif. native was named to the All-ACC second team and the All-Freshman team in her first season (2018). Sweet, a management consulting major and real estate minor, also earned ACC All-Academic team honors in 2018, and was named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll. 

“I am so honored and grateful to be named as one of the four captains of our Notre Dame softball team this year,” Sweet explained. “This university and this team mean so much to me, and I will do everything I can to uphold the guiding principles of Notre Dame Softball. 

“This season, Katie, Ellie, Alexis and I will establish the strongest sense of belief and fearlessness this program has seen,” Sweet continued. “I am so excited for our team to push our limits and to continue to grow into the unstoppable women that we are.”

Notre Dame will open the season in the NFCA Leadoff Classic, taking place in Clearwater, Fla. The first game will be held on Feb. 7, as the Irish take on the Missouri Tigers. Follow along this season on Twitter with @NDSoftball.

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