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The Mud Hens are celebrating girls and women in sports during National Softball Day on Thursday, June 13. We’ll host our first-ever girls softball camp with professional softball players Sis Bates and Sierra Romero, give away mascot headbands, and more. Sis Bates and Sierra Romero will be available for autographs in section 114 from the first through the fifth inning.

Thursday, June 13 vs. Omaha Storm Chasers | 7:05 p.m.

Softball Camp

Sis Bates & Sierra Romero Panel Discussion

Sis Bates, born and raised in Ceres, California, is a celebrated figure in the world of softball. She attended the University of Washington, where she played for the Huskies from 2017 to 2020. Bates quickly made a name for herself with her exceptional defensive skills and consistent hitting. During her collegiate career, she earned multiple accolades, including being a two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, and a three-time NFCA All-American. Bates played a pivotal role in leading the Huskies to the NCAA Women's College World Series finals in 2018.

Post-college, Sis Bates joined Athletes Unlimited, a unique professional league that allows players to earn points based on both individual and team performances. In Athletes Unlimited, Bates continued to showcase her skills, becoming known for her defensive prowess and leadership on the field.

Bates has been a significant asset to the USA Softball Women's National Team. She was part of the team that won gold at the 2017 WBSC Junior Women's World Championship, where she hit .444. In 2023, she played crucial roles in both the Pan American Games and the WBSC World Cup.

In 2023, Sis Bates excelled in international competitions as a member of the USA National Team. At the Pan American Games, she hit .500, contributing 4 RBIs and 5 runs over the tournament​. In the WBSC World Cup Group A event, she maintained her high performance, helping the team secure a spot in the 2024 World Cup finals.

Bates' journey from a standout collegiate player to a professional and international star highlights her dedication and impact on the sport. Her achievements continue to inspire young athletes across the globe.

Sierra Romero is a renowned American softball player and coach, celebrated for her impressive achievements both at the collegiate and professional levels. Born in Murrieta, California, Romero's stellar softball career began at the University of Michigan, where she played from 2013 to 2016.

During her time at Michigan, Romero set numerous records, becoming the first player in NCAA history to achieve 300 runs, 300 hits, and 300 RBIs in a career. She holds the NCAA record for career runs (302) and grand slams (11), and ranks highly in career RBIs (305), slugging percentage (.882), home runs (82), and walks (225)​​. She was a four-time All-American and earned multiple accolades, including the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year and the NFCA Division I Player of the Year in 2016​.

Romero's professional career began when she was drafted second overall by the USSSA Pride in the 2016 National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) Draft. She played with the Pride from 2016 to 2019, achieving significant success despite missing the 2019 season due to an ACL injury. In addition to her NPF career, she has also played for Athletes Unlimited, continuing to make an impact in the sport​.

In 2018, Romero joined the University of Oregon softball coaching staff as a volunteer assistant coach, bringing her extensive experience and knowledge to the team. Her coaching role further highlights her dedication to the sport and her ability to inspire and mentor young athletes​.

Romero's contributions to softball have been widely recognized, culminating in her induction into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2023​.

Jessica Bracamonte saw Toledo reach new heights of success in 2024, including its first berth into the MAC Softball Championship Tournament since 2019 and improved UT’s overall winning percentage from .245 to a .531 in two short years. Additional season highlights include leading the Rockets to a program-best single season batting average of .304, while Sophia Knight and Mady Yackee threw the program’s first perfect game on record in a 12-0 (5 inn.) win to cap a series sweep at Bowling Green on March 23. Sidney Griffith and Riley Mohr earned all-conference honors, Yackee was named to the MAC All-Freshman Team, and Eli Enriquez earned a spot on the MAC All-Tournament Team. Off the field, Toledo recorded 508 hours of volunteer hours and received the Rocket Award for Community Service. In the classroom, the Rockets have recorded at least a 3.7 team grade point average or higher in the last four consecutive semesters.

In her first season at the helm, the Rockets turned in a 21-25 record and a 14-14 league mark. UT hit a grand slam in the fifth inning vs. Bellarmine on Feb. 10 to open the season with a 6-5 win and mark Bracamonte’s first win as head coach in Clinton, SC. Riley Mohr and Jenna Kroll earned all-conference honors, Erin Hunt was named MAC Medal of Excellence recipient, 13 Rockets were placed on the Academic All-MAC team, and four student-athletes earned Academic All-District honors.

Bracamonte is the 12th head coach in program history and arrived at Toledo after serving as an assistant coach at Duke University for three seasons. Duke compiled a 110-23 record with Bracamonte on the coaching staff from 2019-22. She coached outfielders, and slappers and assisted with overall offensive strategies. In the 2022 campaign, Bracamonte helped the Blue Devils achieve their first-ever 40-win regular season and NCAA Super Regional appearance. Duke was ranked No. 12 in the final Softball rankings, and the Blue Devils' staff was tabbed as the National Fastpitch Coaches Association's Southeast Region Staff of the Year for a second-straight season. Bracamonte also mentored six All-ACC selections this past season, including All-Americans Jameson Kavel and Peyton St. George.

Bracamonte is no stranger to the Mid-American Conference. She served six years as the assistant coach at Central Michigan from 2013-19, focusing on hitters and outfielders. She helped guide the Chippewas to a MAC Tournament appearance every year and a regular-season title in 2017.

Bracamonte helped players succeed on and off the field during her time in Mt. Pleasant. Nineteen Chippewas earned All-MAC honors (12 first-team, seven second-team) and four All-Freshman selections with Katelyn Rentschler being named MAC Player of the Year and Sara Hensen Freshman of the Year in 2015. In five of her six seasons at CMU, at least one outfielder was placed on the all-conference or NFCA All-Region Team. Her guidance also developed six record holders at CMU, with those players making a total of 54 appearances in the Chippewas' record book. Academically, Bracamonte oversaw 48 Easton/NFCA All-America Scholar-Athletes, 24 Academic All-MAC members, and one MAC Nan Harvey Award winner.

In addition to coaching and academics, Bracamonte served as the liaison for the program's community service and helped the program earn the 2019 Community Leadership Award behind 1,249.75 hours of community service work. The CMU softball program earned the Dick Enberg Team Leadership Award, which goes to the Chippewa team that best meets five criteria: grade-point average, academic progress rate, community service, athletic performance, and commitment to excellence, two times while on staff.

As a student-athlete, Bracamonte was a four-year starter at Michigan State from 2008-11. In her senior year, she led the Big Ten with four triples while hitting .328, slugging .458, and driving in a team-high 28 runs, and earned the 2011 Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. Additionally, she earned Student-Athlete of the Month, Big Ten Player of the Week and All-BIG Ten Tournament Team accolades during her career. In the classroom, Bracamonte was honored as an NFCA All-America Scholar-Athlete and Academic Excellence Gala Honoree.

A Hacienda Heights, Calif. native, Bracamonte played professionally with the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch League.

Bracamonte earned a bachelor's degree in sociology from Michigan State in 2012 and began her coaching career as a student assistant at her alma mater. She then earned a master's degree in sports administration from CMU in 2015.

Mascot Headband Giveaway

For National Softball Day, we are giving away mascot headbands to the first 1,500 fans to the game on Thursday, June 13.