2023 Syracuse Softball Season Preview

Kelly Breen
Tuesday, Jan 31, 2023 at 12:00 pm by Sports Editor

By: Adam Gotkin | CitrusTV Softball Beat Reporter

As you take a look outside and see the snow falling, it may not feel like it’s softball season. Even though it’s projected to be below zero this weekend, spring is calling. Softball is back in Syracuse. The Orange come into 2023 on a high. Last year was a historic one for the Cuse. S-U finished above .500 for the first time under Head Coach Shannon Doepking. In 2022,  Syracuse won in the ACC tournament for the first time in program history. 

A big reason for the success last year was the fortress that is Skytop Softball Stadium. The Orange were 8-5 at home. Compare that to 6-13 on the road, and you see how important home field was for the Cuse. However, they’ll be on the road for the next two months. The home opener is exactly two months away, March 31st, at 3pm vs Louisville. 

Before the Cuse come home, they’ll take part in four preseason tournaments, three conference series and a slew of one-off non-conference games. One against UCLA who made it to the Women’s College World Series last year. Other than the Bruins, the Orange play almost all non-power five teams to start their year. The Cuse have three BIG-10 opponents in store, however, the BIG-10 is largely regarded to be a step below the rest when it comes to softball. 

Before the Cuse get to their power five matchups though, they start their season in Jacksonville, Florida. Syracuse will take part in the River City Leadoff, hosted by the University of North Florida. IUPUI and Jacksonville University are also participating in the early season tournament. In Jacksonville, the Orange will play five games, two against IUPUI, two against UNF and one against Jacksonville. 

The following weekend, the Cuse will make the first of four trips to the Carolinas in 2023. Syracuse will face off against Iowa and Purude in the ACC-BIG10 challenge, in Raleigh, North Carolina hosted by NC State. The Hawkeyes and Boilermakers both finished below .500 last season and finished in the bottom half of the BIG-10. The Orange will play both teams twice.

After that, S-U will head southeast, the Charleston, South Carolina to take part in the Low Country Classic, hosted by the College of Charleston. Robert Morris and Rutgers will also take part in the tournament. Syracuse will play two against Robert Morris, two against Rutgers and one against the host, CofC. 

The Carolina trip doesn’t end then for Syracuse Softball. Then the Orange head west for their first ACC series of the season. The Cuse will start conference play against Clemson, who finished last year 42-17. The trip marks Syracuse’s first time playing in the beautiful McWhorter Stadium. Clemson started its softball program just three years ago. 

This brings us to mid-March and spring break at Syracuse University. The Orange will spend their spring break in the Golden State, taking part in the Lance Up Invite, and the aforementioned matchup with powerhouse UCLA. 

From there, the Cuse will settle into a sense of normalcy, with only conference series and in-state double headers to finish out the season. It will be a long and winding road for Syracuse in 2023. Be sure to follow my twitter, @adam_gotkin for updates all season long on one of the most unique teams, and schedules in all of college sports.

ajgotkin@syr.edu | @adam_gotkin