MISSOULA – Griz softball won their first Big Sky title, and made their first trip to the NCAA tournament last year. And the program keeps adding good pieces, even for their fans.
Montana played their first home games of the season last week, which doubled as their first games in front of the new permanent stands installed this winter. The improvement triples the amount of seats in the venue to over 600. UM already led the league in attendance, with many fans sitting around the outfield in lawn chairs. Now there’s a better, behind-home-plate view, which Montana hopes adds to a better environment. And the Griz say they could tell a difference immediately.
“Practicing in front of the empty stands, having the new part of the facility has been fun, exciting,” said first year head coach Melanie Meuchel. “But to watch them get filled this last weekend, even in some cold temperatures, was fun. It was loud.”
“I mean, last year I thought we had the best stadium in the conference. So now we’re just even better,” added center fielder MaKenna McGill. “Even our facilities, everything that we have I think out-does everyone in our conference.”
Now the Griz will try to out-do everyone in the Big Sky on the field. Conference play starts this weekend. Montana opens with a three-game series at Idaho State on Saturday and Sunday.