Ready for the games to begin

The start of the season is bittersweet for Victoria Hayward; it's the beginning of her last season. University of Washington Athletics

Hi, everyone! I’m Victoria Hayward, a senior on the University of Washington Huskies softball team and I can’t express to all of you how excited I am for the opportunity to blog for espnW this season. I won’t make any promises, but I can tell you that 2014 is going to be a year to remember in DI softball. There are few things more exciting than being a collegiate athlete, and I hope that this blog will provide you with the opportunity to peek into my life and experience what it’s like to be a DAWG.

For my first official post I thought I’d tell you a little bit about myself and give you a rundown of what you can expect during the upcoming season!

I was born in Toronto (Canadian, eh!), but my family moved to Mountain View, Calif., in 2000. I’ve been a member of the Canadian National Team since my junior year in high school. Team Canada is where I met and played beside Danielle Lawrie and Jenn Salling and how I ended up playing here at the University of Washington. I’m midway through my second-to-last quarter at UW and will graduate in June with a double major in political science and communications.

The season is just around the corner, less than a week away. We are spending our first five or six weekends of the 2014 season on the road. Although it’s a bummer not being able to play in beautiful Husky Stadium until mid-March, nothing bonds a team quite like a long string of road trips.

Our first stop: Viva Las Vegas! We head to the Sportco Kick-Off Classic in just a few days and will open our season against the Baylor Bears and then play San Diego, Arkansas, UNLV and UC Davis in our first tournament of the year.

We are getting to that point in our preseason preparation where we’re just itching to get back on the field together. After months of individual work, strength and conditioning sessions, and team practices, we can’t wait to finally play. We’ve spent most of this month scrimmaging against one another. Don’t get me wrong -- I love our pitchers -- but I speak for the entire team when I say that we’re ready for game day!

The start of this season is bittersweet for me. It marks the beginning of the end: my last season of college softball. That said, I can’t wait for the season to start and will give everything I’ve got to help the 2014 UW softball team achieve its goal of winning another national championship.

There is never a dull moment on this team and hopefully I’ll be able to share some of those moments with all of you, whether through pictures, videos, funny one-liners or anything else I can think of. If you ever have any questions or requests, feel free to get in touch with me through the comments section.

Follow me on Twitter @VictoriaHayward

Go Dawgs!

Victoria Hayward is a senior outfielder on the Washington Huskies softball team. Hayward was named first-team All-Pacific Region and first-team All-Pac-12 in 2013 after batting .372 with 57 runs scored, 21 RBI and 22 stolen bases. Hayward has missed just two games in three seasons with the Huskies.