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By Kevin Kacatin
Feb 3, 2011

HONOLULU, Hawaii --Aloha softball boosters!

The 2011 Rainbow Wahine Softball has already started to make "waves" in the national softball media and the season hasn't even begun yet!!!

The 2011 Rainbow Wahine Softball team has been voted No. 8 nationally in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaching Association preseason poll and No. 13 in the USA Today/ poll. This is the highest pre-season ranking in the program's history. The 2011 Rainbow Wahine Softball team has also been voted by opposing WAC coaches to finish the season at the top of the conference.

The individual accolades are quite abundant as well! Junior pitcher Stephanie Ricketts has been voted by WAC coaches as the 2011 WAC Preseason Pitcher of the Year and sophomore Kelly Majam has been voted the 2011 WAC Preseason Player of the Year. Other Rainbow Wahine to have been selected as preseason All-WAC are senior third baseman Melissa Gonzalez, sophomore shortstop Jessica Iwata, and senior outfielder/pitcher Jenna Rodriguez.

All current Na Wahine Softball Booster Club members have been sent order forms for our exclusive green Under Armour booster club polo shirts courtesy of Under Armour and the UH Rainbowtique. You should be receiving them shortly at the mailing addresses you provided upon membership.

A portion of all proceeds received will go to support Rainbow WahineSoftball.

***A reminder to ALL members: To ensure better communication with members, the Na Wahine Softball Booster Club would like to make sure all members submit either an e-mail or a suitable phone number for contact. As we grow as a booster club and as events and fundraisers are organized, we would like to maintain lines of communication with our members in an efficient manner. If you have not submitted an e-mail or phone number to us, please email Kevin at***

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Don't forget!!! We are only a few short days away from the official start of the 2011 softball season. Thursday, February 10 will be the home opener for the Rainbow Wahine softball team. While this opening game will be televised live locally on KFVE, there is no better place to watch high-quality Division I women's collegiate fastpitch softball than at the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium. Admission is free. Please come down and join some of the most dedicated softball fans in the country!

The Rainbow Wahine Softball team opens the 2011 season with the Oceanic Time Warner Cable Classic against Texas State, UC Davis, and Southern Utah.

The Rainbow Wahine are no strangers to UC Davis. The 2010 Co-Champions of the Big West Conference (shared with Cal State Northridge) fell by a final score of 10-2 to the Rainbow Wahine at the 2010 Stanford Regional in five innings. In the spring of 2013, the Rainbow Wahine will re-join the ranks of the Big West Conference.

The 2010 Southland Conference Softball Champions Texas State could have been future conference-mates with the Rainbow Wahine. Instead, the Lady Bobcats will be one season short as they are joining the WAC in the spring of 2013, the same season the Rainbow Wahine will depart for the Big West. In a "homecoming" of sorts, Rainbow Wahine alumnae PeeJay Brun returns to the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium, but this time as an assistant coach for the Texas State Bobcats.

Peejay Brun played softball in the outfield and behind the plate as acatcher for Hawai‘i from 1989-1994, earning second-team All-Big West honors in 1994 as well as being named Hawai‘i’s nominee for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award. Brun played professionally after college for the San Jose Spitfires of the Ladies Professional Baseball League for two years where she was MVP of the 1997 league-championship team. Brun graduated from Hawai‘i with a degree in music before earning her master's in physical education administration from California State University-Dominguez Hills.

The Hawai'i-connection in this tournament does not stop with Texas State. The Southern Utah Thunderbirds will cross paths with current Rainbow Wahine junior first baseman Shannon Lum, who just transferred from SUU this season after playing two seasons under former head coaches Julie Strand and Jodi Hermanek.

On June 1, 2010, Southern Utah University announced the hiring of the program's ninth head coach in Kyle Magnusson. Magnusson comes to the Thunderbirds after stops at the University of Utah, Salt Lake Community College and Hunter High School (West Valley). Most notably, Magnusson has been a member of the U.S. National fast-pitch team, playing in international tournaments from 2000-2009. In 2010 the Thunderbirds finished with an overall record of 10-41.

This opening weekend of Rainbow Wahine Softball (February 10-12, and single game against Texas State on February 14th at 5:00pm.) will be the ONLY time the Rainbow Wahine will be playing at home in the month of February. After this weekend, the Wahine will depart for the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic Tournament (Feb 18-20) and then play at doubleheader at UC Riverside before heading to the Cathedral City Classic Tournament (Feb 24-27).

The Rainbow Wahine return to Honolulu for the 2011 Bank of HawaiiInvitational beginning on Friday March 4th.