home sitesearch contact fan about
  Submit/Update Profile  

Search the Network:

Softball Notes from the Road

View larger Courtesy: RaginCajuns.com


OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla-At 3:25 pm on Tuesday, the Ragin’ Cajuns’ bus was tracked down just north of Dallas and several players were ask to comment on their journey to Oklahoma City and the Women’s College World Series.  Here are their comments…

Brittany Cuevas (So., P, Brazoria, Texas):

We are so excited to finally be on our way to the World Series! We are so anxious to arrive in Oklahoma City and cannot wait to fight together as a team and compete for a National Title. We know we have tons of fans coming up to support us and are so grateful for each and every one of them. 


Lana Bowers (So., C, Crosby, Texas):

We are on the bus and it has been raining.  This makes everyone drowsy but none of us have forgotten what is waiting for us when we arrive! We are ready to step out on the field and compete for what we have worked for from the first day of practice. We have worked too hard to let anything slip through our fingers. We are ready to fight for a championship.


Donna Bourgeois (Fr., P, Lafayette, La.):

The longer we sit on this bus, the more we think about what is at stake.  Since August of last year we have been working towards one goal…and we are now embarking on our dream.  Going to the World Series is just the beginning; our common goal is much higher…


Courtney Trahan (So., OF, Maurice, La.):

While we are all extremely tired of being on the bus, we can’t stop thinking about arriving at the World Series.  All of the tunnels, all of the hang-cleans, all of the hours spent hitting in the cages finally seem worth it; we’ve reached a goal that we set before the season began. It’s show time. Pitch by pitch…we’re ready to shock the world!


Brooke Brodhead (Sr., SS, Lafayette, La.):

As we sit in traffic on the bus we can’t stop talking about going to the World Series. It’s a dream come true!! We have all worked together to achieve this goal and we truly deserve this opportunity. We are ready to play pitch by pitch and fight with each other to win the national championship.


Vanessa Soto (Sr., 2B, San Diego, Calif.):

The team’s spirit and morale is still sky high and the grins on everyone’s faces are contagious.  We are all extremely excited and ready to arrive in Oklahoma City; in a few hours we get to live out this dream we have achieved. 

May 27, 2008 – 3:30 p.m. – Following is a candid telephone interview with Co-Head Coach Michael Lotief as he and the Ragin’ Cajuns travelled to the WCWS.


As you approach Oklahoma City and the pinnacle of your profession, what have your been contemplating?
This is something that these kids have dreamed about since they were young.  Obviously as a coach it is something that you dream about for your program; it’s like the Final Four for basketball or a BCS bowl game in college football.  So, this is where you want to be at the end of the season.  To me the bus ride is symbolic of our journey…the journey to Oklahoma is symbolic of our journey throughout the season.  On the trip we have had time to reflect and also had time to talk about exactly what our mission is once we get there.  It’s a good time to reflect and smile, but it’s also a time to understand how blessed we are that we still have some work to do.

As a staff, your accomplishments have been well documented.  In your eyes, what does it mean to you and Coach Stefni to compete for a national title?

Well, I think all that it is…is that we have known for a long time that we have a special group of kids because we get to start with them when they are juniors in high school when we get to recruit them…sit in their homes and get to visit with them and their parents.  We get to know who they are and what makes them tick…what gets them motivated.  Once they get to college, we get to see them on the field in the fall, in August, and the dog days of summer when nobody is around.  We get to watch and see how hard they work.  We get to see them in the classroom and we get to see how committed they are to excellence in the classroom.


So to me, I think all the World Series does for me is it let’s the outside world know what we have known for a long time.  It validates your opinion that these kids are special.  They are winners…they are champions.  Getting to the World Series let’s the outside world know what we have known all along…we have good kids.  

You mentioned earlier that you decided to take a bus to OKC rather than fly and that the trip was symbolic of the team’s journey this season.  Was this a tough choice to make?

No, no, no…we are comfortable on the bus ride.  It allows us to bring all of our kids including the walk-ons and support staff.  We feel comfortable because it is our bus and it is the same bus we have been on throughout the season.  We have our routine and it is something that we feel very comfortable with.  And, the bus rides are fun because we get to watch movies…the girls play their silly games and sing karaoke.  It is a time to bond and a time to, as a scene, continue on with what we are trying to do.  Besides…I don’t like flying…it hurts my ears.


Side note: preliminary votes from the bus indicate that the best singer award goes to Courtney Trahan for her rendition of “Stay” by Sugarland.

Have you noticed any differences in your team since qualifying for the WCWS?

No, I feel the same energy and I feel the same focus.  What I feel is different is their sense of accomplishment.  They are proud to be representing our university, fans, and community.  But other than that, it seems like business as usual.

In post-game interviews at LSU and Houston, you mentioned your appreciation for the university, its administration, and the local community.  Can you expand on this for a moment?

When we were in Baton Rouge, the number of Ragin’ Cajun fans compared to LSU fans was 2 to 1.  On the field, from my perspective, it sounded like 20 to 1.  And then in Houston from what I heard, the number of UL fans compared to Houston fans was 3 to 1.  Again, on the field it sounded like 20 to 1.  During the competitions, we have gone through our fair share of adversity to…maybe it was the grand slam by Houston, but our fans made sure that our kids knew that they were behind them and supporting them.  It makes a difference. 

And then when you get home, there are the people who can’t be there or the people who send you a text or a card or the people who just drop by the field and say…you know Coach we are praying for you and we appreciate how hard they play.  To me in athletics, this is what it is all about. 


These kids are not going to play pro sports and they play for the love of the game and because they know they are appreciated.  To me, that’s what sets this program apart from a lot of other programs in the country…it’s the fact that these kids are appreciated not only for the wins, but also for how they conduct their business on and off the field.  Our fans love them for that and to me, that is the ultimate sign of support. 

 What is your schedule like tomorrow?

10:00 a.m. – Practice

11:00 a.m. – Hitting

 Post practice – student-athlete interviews with ESPN


 Relax in the late afternoon

 Team Dinner