Three storylines to watch in week two of Athletes Unlimited softball

(Jade Hewitt/Athletes Unlimited)

The first weekend of Athletes Unlimited Softball had it all. Between no-hitters, home runs and players living up to and exceeding the hype (hello, Odicci Alexander), the top of the leaderboard remains tight, with seven players totaling more than 400 points.

But week two means a new draft and all new teams.

As the second weekend of Athletes Unlimited’s softball season gets underway, here are three storylines to watch.

Can Cat Osterman pull away?

Last year, Osterman took a lead early into the season and never looked back. Currently, Osterman sits second on the leaderboard, just eight points behind Sahvanna Jaquish. In her final season of softball, the 38-year-old continues to make history. Just last week, Osterman tossed the first no-hitter in Athletes Unlimited history. In seven innings pitched she recorded five strikeouts, two walks and just one run allowed. 

Osterman seems to be just as dangerous as she was last season, something that is good for those she plays with and detrimental to those she plays against. If she continues to find her groove and remains stellar on the mound, it will take a very special season to unseat the reigning champion.

Odicci Alexander vs. the hype

Alexander balled out in week one and currently sits at fifth in the standings with 424 total points. A member of Team Osterman last week, she and the team went 3-0, only allowing three runs in seven innings pitched. Against Team Piancastelli she recorded three strikeouts and throughout the weekend only allowed one home run. 

However, this week, Jaquish took her off the board with the first pick of the draft before Osterman had the chance. Undoubtedly one of the hottest pitchers in the league following her stellar campaign with James Madison in the NCAA Tournament, the question will be whether Alexander can stay consistent. Just 14 points behind fourth place Lilli Piper, she has the chance to work her way into captaincy next week if she continues to dominate on the mound. 

Sahvanna Jaquish looks to keep hitting streak alive 

There’s a reason Jaquish is at the top of the leaderboard after week one, and it’s because she lit it up last weekend while on Team Osterman. The catcher has an eye-popping .778 batting average after nine at bats through three games with five runs scored. She’s hit at least one run in every game and currently is one of just two players with a double this season. 

Her hitting streak won’t be the only thing to keep an eye on, however. This week was Jaquish’s first time drafting this season. With only eight points separating her and Osterman, her softball savvy will be tested. If she drafted well and can stay hot at the place, she may have a chance to unseat the reigning champion. But one underwhelming weekend could see Osterman run away with the title again.

Editor’s note: Athletes Unlimited is a sponsor of Just Women’s Sports.