As the No. 5 Washington softball team approaches the first quarter pole of its season, it is one of six remaining undefeated teams in the country.
Just don’t expect the Huskies (13-0) to care.
“We don’t want to be perfect,” head coach Heather Tarr said. “We want to win and get better, and the fact that the stats say we haven’t lost yet — that’s all that is — we don’t really care. … We’re not trying to be statistically better than the 2009 team [which began the season 18-0 on its way to a National Championship] — that doesn’t matter to us.”
This is one of the benefits of having a team as talented as any other in the country; the Huskies don’t necessarily have to care who they play. If they are on top of their game, they can beat any team at any time. And so far, they have done just that.
On Saturday, the Huskies begin a three-game series in Albuquerque, N.M., against New Mexico (6-3). The Lobos bring a perfect 6-0 record at home into the series, a stat that does not figure to hold when New Mexico has to face a much more potent team than either Utah Valley or Northern Colorado.
This is the first weekend in the now not-so-young season that the Huskies will play a three-game series against one team rather than a tournament against a variety of squads. This will serve almost as a practice for the Pac-10 season, when each weekend will pit the Huskies against another conference team in a series.
“It is good preparation for the Pac-10,” Tarr said. “It is just an opportunity for us to practice that.”
But maintaining its attitude of focusing solely on itself, the UW is really not too concerned with the difference.
“We are pretty consistent in how we prepare against everyone we play,” junior first baseman Niki Williams said.
Senior third baseman Morgan Stuart, though, did identify one key difference.
“The only thing with a series is the idea of making an adjustment and how quick we do that … even within one game,” she said. “And then if we don’t make that adjustment, we have some more chances. It is basically the same, though.”
Basically the same. The Huskies will treat this weekend’s game like any other, like they were playing one of the nation’s top teams, which they will have plenty of opportunities to do come the conference season.
“We don’t worry about who,” Tarr said. “Anyone, anywhere, any time, any place, rain or shine, snow or wind, it doesn’t matter.”
Reach reporter Kevin Dowd at email@example.com.
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