This USF softball pair is always on the same page

CLEARWATER — USF senior Georgina Corrick doesn’t have one of those big lists of numbers and notes wrapped around her forearm like many softball pitchers these days. Those spreadsheets that pitchers refer to after their coach calls a number corresponding to a certain pitch and placement in the strike zone.

Corrick doesn’t want it, or need it. She has her receiver, Josie Foreman.

Foreman, a sophomore, has done her homework on all batters and — after a lifetime of calling her own pitches for many softball teams — relies on instinct and feel before calling a pitch. And she calls all two always.

“And I love it,” said USF coach Ken Eriksen, a former baseball ace (for USF 1979-82) who coached multiple Olympic softball teams and over the past 24 years with the Bulls. “I have complete confidence in them. They are artists. They adjust and adapt to situations, and they have such a feeling that it’s truly remarkable.

While it’s pretty rare to allow catchers and pitchers to call their own games these days, it’s not for Eriksen, who has always encouraged his players to study the game.

USF senior Georgina Corrick allowed two hits, struck out nine and scored one in Friday’s 7-0 win at the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational. [ SCOTT PURKS | Special to the Times ]

Corrick, in fact, has always had his catchers call his plays.

Last year, with Foreman stepping in as a true freshman, Corrick finished the season in ERA national rankings (0.98, fourth), hits allowed per game (3.68, 10th), shutouts (15, first), strikeout ratio (6.53, 13th), strikeouts (333, fourth) and wins (24, 13th). She also threw four hits, giving him six for his college career.

“And I give a lot of credit for everything I do to (Foreman),” Corrick said, standing next to his catcher Friday afternoon after striking out nine, allowing two hits and scoring a goal in a 7-0 victory over Notre Dame in day two action of the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational. “She is so good. I hardly ever shake it. I follow his instincts.

Foreman shrugged, modestly, and recounted how she was “so nervous” before calling her first game last year. Corrick, who is brimming with confidence, quickly instilled it in his new receiver.

Now the table is set for a successful season in 2022, thanks to Corrick and Foreman and a strong all-around roster that includes third baseman Dezarae Maldonado, shortstop Alanah Rivera, second baseman Megan Pierro, first baseman Madison Epperson and outfielders Alexis Johns and Meghan Sheehan.

“The possibilities are exciting for this group,” Eriksen said. “We have pieces that could combine to make something really special. But it is still early and we still have things to learn.

In his 24th season, USF coach Ken Eriksen has high hopes for his USF Bulls, who started 2022 with a 4-1 record.
In his 24th season, USF coach Ken Eriksen has high hopes for his USF Bulls, who started 2022 with a 4-1 record. [ SCOTT PURKS | Special to the Times ]

So far, so good.

USF improved to 4-1 with the win over Notre Dame and will get another great test today when the Bulls take on Softball America’s No. 4 team Oklahoma State at 1:30 p.m. at the Eddie C Complex. Moore.

Eriksen said he was confident his team would show focus, a trait they displayed on Friday after the team bus failed to show up at USF and the Bulls all piled into separated cars and drove to Clearwater.

With the softball complex full and the parking lot full, the Bulls parked here, there and everywhere — even on the street near a mall.

No worries, no problems.

“They adapted like it was all part of the deal,” Eriksen said. “Not a hint of displeasure. But that’s how they are.

St. Pete Clearwater Elite Softball Invitational

Until Sunday, Eddie C. Moore Complex, Clearwater

Today: UCLA vs. Auburn, 10 a.m. (ESPN); Notre Dame at LSU, 10:30 a.m. (SEC); Tennessee vs. UCF, 10:30 a.m. (ESPN+); Northwestern at Clemson, 11 (ACC); Michigan at FSU, 1 p.m. (ACC); Oklahoma State vs. USF, 1:30 (ESPN+); Texas Tech vs. Washington, 2:30 (ESPN+); Texas vs. UCLA, 4 (ESPNU); Michigan at LSU, 5 (ESPN+); Wisconsin vs. Clemson, 5:30 (ESPN+); Washington vs. Oklahoma State, 6 (ESPN+); UCF vs. Texas, 7 (Longhorn)

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