By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Penn softball program has been in existence since 1974. For the first 38 seasons, an appearance in the post-season eluded the Quakers.
However, that changes on Friday night when Penn makes its NCAA Tournament debut, visiting #16 Texas A & M in College Station, Texas, in regional action.
The Quakers are 30-18 and champions of the Ivy League as they have marched through a campaign that has gone almost exactly as they had planned and hoped.
“We had a single-minded goal from day one and that was to win an Ivy League Championship,” Penn head coach Leslie King tells KYW Newsradio. “We came in second last year, we were runners-up to Harvard, and literally since that moment we got on the bus and the sense of disappointment we had then, we’ve been single-minded about getting back there. Not just getting back to the championship series, but to actually win it this year. We’ve had a countdown going, a day-by-day countdown, since the first day of practice, all the way until we opened Ivy play against Harvard. That just kind of put everything into focus and really, really set that goal. And the kids were just awesome, seven seniors had great, great leadership. They weren’t going to be denied and really the only thing I had to do was put on a practice or two. The senior class was going to lead them all the way.”