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Softball: Holas-Lotief matchup worth noting

Softball: Holas-Lotief matchup worth noting

Softball: Holas-Lotief matchup worth noting


COLLEGE STATION, Texas – There are 16 tournaments taking place at regional sites across the country, but none will match the storylines that begin to develop here today.

I guess they really do make things bigger in Texas.


"I never thought about everything that was involved that way," Houston coach Kyla Holas admitted Thursday. "But while I know it’s interesting, I’m just so focused on my team. And I bet she is too."

Well, count me inquisitive, because when former players from one of the country’s elite programs meet for the first time in NCAA play as head coaches, there’s a certain interest level raised.

And that’s what will happen today when UL and Houston square off at 1 p.m. to open the College Station Regional at Texas A&M’s Aggie Softball Complex.

Did I mention the Cajuns’ Stefni Lotief and Holas – who you might remember, respectively, by their maiden names of Whitton and Hall – were the first great names in what has become a laundry list of nationally prominent players in Ragin’ Cajun softball history?

"This is a program where something like that really doesn’t surprise you because of all the great players that have been here," said Cajun freshman pitcher Brittany Cuevas. "But it is interesting."

When Lotief arrived in Lafayette in 1987, UL was doing OK as Yvette Girouard pieced together a program worthy of NCAA consideration. But you need a calling card for recruits, and that’s what the big right-handed pitcher from Friendship, Texas, was.

By the time she had won 78 games, taken UL to its first regional and become the program’s first first-team All-American in 1990, Lotief showed what was possible in our neck of the woods in Louisiana.

Then came Holas, and a bar that had already been raised went through the roof.

It didn’t hurt that Pasadena, Texas, was just 20 minutes from Friendship and Lotief’s dad was Holas’ pitching coach in 18-and-under travel softball.

"There are all sorts of opportunities when you’re successful in high school, and obviously, for a lot of different reasons, I knew about Stefni," Holas said. "I just always had (UL) in my mind because of that, and it just worked out that’s where I ended up going.

"And, to be honest, I never thought twice about the choice."

During her stay, Holas became arguably the greatest pitcher in program history. The numbers say as much.

At UL, Holas is first in career winning percentage (.839), ERA (0.50), shutouts (56) and no-hitters (17), and second in games pitched (132), wins (104), innings pitched (862) and strikeouts (.820).

Lotief is second in ERA (0.66), third in innings pitched (747) and no-hitters (6), and fourth in games pitched (104), wins (78) and strikeouts (576).

Holas has several amazing single-season marks, including for ERA (0.23), shutouts (21) and no-hitters (8). Lotief is second in ERA (0.28) and no-hitters (5).

"We were different types of pitchers, so we accomplished things in different ways," Holas said. "But I think what we share is the same college experience. I loved my time at that school, and obviously Stefni did, too, because she’s still there and doing the same great things."

And what about today’s matchup?

"I guess there’s interest because Kyla and I played (at UL), but we’re trying to move on now and keep this season going," Lotief said. "I’ve known her since she was 14 years old, and what she did while playing softball – that was never a surprise. And look what she’s doing with that program.

"This is just a good thing all around. I’ll be happier if we play well and win, but it shows what can happen. You can come to our school and play with the best in the nation, get a great education, and then continue in the sport and teach younger kids how to have everything Kyla and I have and are experiencing. That says something."



College Station Regional


Texas A&M Aggie Softball Complex, College Station, Texas

Today’s Schedule

Game 1 – Houston (42-16) vs. Louisiana (46-16), 1 p.m.

Game 2 – Sam Houston State (37-24) vs. Texas A&M (40-10), 4 p.m.

Saturday’s Schedule

Game 3 – UH-UL winner vs. SHSU-A&M winner, noon

Game 4 – UH-UL loser vs. SHSU-A&M loser, 2:30 p.m.

Game 5 – Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 winner, 5:30 p.m.

Sunday’s Schedule

Game 6 – Game 3 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 1 p.m.

Game 7 – Game 3 winner vs. Game 5 winner, if necessary, 30 minutes after first game

Ticket information


Ticket packages for the NCAA Softball Championships College Station Regional are available through the Texas A&M Ticket Office. Only all-tournament passes, good for all of the six or seven regional games, will be offered prior to the start of competition.

All-tournament passes are $25 for reserved seats, $20 for general admission and $15 for student and youth tickets. Once the regional begins, single-session tickets are $10 for reserved seats, $7 for general admission and $5 for student and youth tickets.

Ticket purchases and other information may be obtained by calling 1-888-992-4443 (99-AGGIE).

 Originally published in the Daily Advertiser, May 18, 2007