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Michella Chester | NCAA.com | March 4, 2022

The biggest impact college softball freshmen to watch in 2022

The biggest impact college softball freshmen of 2022 three weeks in

The 2022 college softball season is well underway and we already have a ton of new faces showing up big time that we will watch for years to come. We took a look at some of the freshmen this season making the biggest impacts early on for their teams. This list is comprised almost entirely of players within the top 25. 

Here are 10 of the biggest impact college softball freshmen for the 2022 season: 

(Stats are as of Mon. Feb 28)

Michaela Edenfield — Florida State

Michaela Edenfield, a redshirt freshman this season at FSU, is already an integral part of this team as the Seminoles are off to a terrific start this season. Edenfield is hitting over .400 with six home runs so far, which is tied for second in NCAA. Behind the plate she is a strong leader and calming presence, playing with poise and confidence. The catcher hit .400 with three home runs, two doubles and six RBIs as her team ended up with a perfect record at the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational. Edenfield came through in big moments, hitting home runs against Texas, UCF and UCLA. She had at least one extra-base hit in five games last week and scored in four games.

Jordy Bahl — Oklahoma

Jordy Bahl is an incredibly obvious pick here. Little explanation is needed for this one. As you might know, Bahl is the dominant freshman ace for the No. 1 team in the country. She is 6-0 in the circle so far, sporting a 0.96 ERA and a .106 opponent batting average. She has tallied 65 strikeouts and eight walks through 37 innings pitched. A special freshman that will be one of the best pitchers in the nation, across the board for years to come. She is taking the nation by storm. 

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Kendra Falby — Florida

Next, we've got Kendra Falby at Florida. Falby was recently named SEC Freshman of the Week for the second consecutive week after successfully getting on base in all 16 games this season. She is leading a top-five team in hitting with a .519 batting average (which ranks in the top 15 in the NCAA). She already has two homers and 12 RBIs and is 16-for-17 in stolen bases. In the second week of play she was the D1Softball SEC freshman of the week after batting .550 with a double, two triples and three RBIs in six games and going 6-for-6 in stolen bases. Pretty impressive. 

The Gators have another freshman in Regan Walsh that is worth noting. She is leading the team with 17 RBI. 

Dallis Goodnight — Alabama

Keep your eye out for Dallis Goodnight over at Alabama this season. Goodnight is another player on this list leading a top-rated softball team in batting average with a .425 average. She also leads the team in runs with 17 and hits with 17. She is also nine for 10 in stolen base attempts this season. When you look at Bama freshman though, I can't fail to also mention Goodnight's roommate, Megan Bloodworth. Bloodworth currently has four home runs, tied for first on the team and has a team-leading .862 slugging percentage. 

Emma Lemely — Virginia Tech

Emma Lemley at Virginia Tech is next. Lemley is already proving to make up a great pitching duo alongside Keely Rochard. Despite a loss against Bama, Lemley went six innings and gave up two earned runs on five hits with seven strikeouts and no walks. She has a 0.77 ERA on the season, a 5-1 record and opponents are batting just .133 against her. 

Olivia Johnson — Washington

Next, you might remember Olivia Johnson at Washington who had one of the best collegiate starts you could ask for, and the best in Husky history. Johnson belted two home runs in her first two collegiate at-bats, and had a 7-for-7 start at the plate. She did not record an out until her sixteenth at-bat. Johnson will likely be known for her power for years to come.  

Stormy Kotzelnick — Louisiana

Stormy Kotzelnick is a redshirt freshman at Louisiana this season and she is off to a terrific start. She is currently hitting .515 on the season with a team-leading .848 slugging percentage. She is joined by an incredible freshman class that I want to mention here as well: Alexa Langeliers is a first-year leading the team with four home runs, and then Laney Creduer and and Kayla Falterman are both freshmen in the lineup hitting .500. On the pitching staff, Sam Landry is leading as a first-year with a 5-0 record on the season, a 1.64 ERA and an opposing batting average of just.135. 

Savannah Pola — UCLA

At UCLA, Savannah Pola is making a grand entrance this season. She made her way into the lineup of a top-five team and was just named Pac-12 freshman of the week after a six RBI weekend at the Mary Nutter classic. She knocked in the winning run against Tennessee and ranks second on the team with 14 hits and 27 total bases. She has been really clutch in big moments — no freshman nerves to see here. 

Ana Gold — Duke

Next, watch out for Ana Gold at Duke. Gold is currently hitting .395 with three homers so far for a top 10 program. She secured the spot at third base for the Blue Devils and is leading with 20 runs scored. She can hit for power and will be a name to watch out for as Duke continues to excel.

Alexia Lacatena — Kentucky

Lastly, Alexia Lacatena at Kentucky. She has only pitched 16 innings so far this season but has 3 wins, no losses, and a .42 ERA with 15 strikeouts and just 3 walks. On top of Lacatena, the Wildcats have another freshman on their roster in Taylor Ebbs who is currently hitting .333. 

Here are a few more freshman names to watch out for this season:

  • Mia Scott — Texas
  • Annabelle Widra — Michigan
  • Stevie Hansen — Oregon
  • Cydney Sanders —ASU
  • Kylie Macey —Georgia 

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