UNCG (11-19, 3-3 SoCon) at Furman (10-17, 1-5 SoCon), March 23-25, Greenville, S.C.
LiveStats: UNCGSpartans.com (via FurmanPaladins.com)
Video: Furman All-Access (Saturday's first game, $7.99)
• UNCG's softball team will cap a busy week with a three-game Southern Conference set at Furman this week. The teams will play a doubleheader Saturday and a single game Sunday with 1 p.m. starts both days.
• UNCG has already played three games this week, picking up a 12-4 win over North Carolina A&T on Tuesday and splitting a doubleheader at Gardner-Webb on Thursday. UNCG won Thursday's first game 11-1 in six innings before dropping the nightcap 10-5.
• Heather Robb had a monster day at the plate against the Runnin' Bulldogs, going 5-for-7 (.714) with a double, a homer and four RBI. Eileen Horsmon, Katelyn Bedwell and Tatiana Alcala had three hits each in the doubleheader.
• Overall, senior Alex Emeterio leads the Spartans with a .351 average and a .432 on-base percentage and has struck out just three times in 88 plate appearances. Bedwell has raised her average to .319 and leads the team in home runs (eight) and RBI (29), both third-most in the SoCon. Horsmon is hitting .312 with a team-best six doubles to go along with seven homers and 27 RBI and a team-best .645 slugging percentage. Sophomore Aisha Figueroa is hitting .304 and leads the team with seven stolen bases.
• UNCG has hit 22 home runs in just 30 games this season and needs just one more to match last year's season total. Bedwell and Horsmon have combined for 15 of them, while Robb has four, Emeterio has two and Alcala has one. The 22 homers are ninth-most in school history. The Spartans' home run totals have soared under coach Jennifer Herzig, as seven of the top 10 home run totals in school history have come during Herzig's tenure (2006-present).
• Emeterio is in the top 10 in school history in career batting average, hits, doubles, triples, runs, RBI, slugging percentage and walks. With 206 hits to her credit, the school record of 227, shared by Karyn Thompson (1993-96) and Jennifer Bonilla (2004-07), is well within Emeterio's reach if she maintains her current pace. With two runs Thursday against Gardner-Webb, Emeterio moved into a tie for ninth in school history with 101 for her career and became just the 11th player to reach the century mark in a UNCG uniform.
• Bedwell needs just one more at-bat to reach the minimum standards for inclusion on UNCG's career lists for batting average and slugging percentage, but the sophomore from Surrey, British Columbia, will move into both lists with her next at-bat. Bedwell currently has a career .322 average, which would be good for eighth in school history, and her .543 slugging percentage would put her third in career history.
• With her two-run home run Thursday at Gardner-Webb, Robb moved into a tie for 11th place in school history with her 13th career blast. She is now deadlocked with Leslie Furness (2006-09) and one back of former teammate Brittany Ausley (2007-10).
• With 350 career strikeouts to her credit, Mattson is just one back of seventh-place Amy Poole (2000-03) on UNCG's all-time list. Mattson surpassed another milestone Thursday, becoming just the eighth pitcher in school history to toss 500 or more innings. She has logged 501 1/3 since 2009.
• UNCG is 30-27 all-time against Furman and has won 10 of the last 14 in the series. The Spartans took two of three last season in Greensboro, splitting a doubleheader on March 26 and winning the rubber game the following day. Horsmon hit solo homers in each game of the twinbill and Mattson turned in a solid outing in the Sunday game, throwing just 92 pitches in the complete-game effort.
• Furman will be completing a 10-game homestand this weekend. The Paladins are 3-4 on the homestand so far, including a doubleheader sweep of Presbyterian on Wednesday.
• The Paladins are 1-5 in league play so far, suffering a sweep at Elon to open SoCon play and dropping the three-game series to Appalachian State last weekend. Furman won the opener of the doubleheader 3-1 before dropping a pair of one-run games. App won game two of the doubleheader 4-3 and took a 1-0 win the following day.
• In the sweep of the Blue Hose on Wednesday, Furman's pitching staff limited Presbyterian to just two earned runs in picking up wins of 3-1 and 4-3. The Paladins picked up the win in game one despite being outhit 5-3, but all three of their runs were unearned. Natalie Clemmons was 3-for-3 and Nikki Legg was 2-for-3 in the game-two win.
• Like UNCG, Furman's roster features a trio of Preseason All-SoCon picks. Third baseman Jessie Homesley was a first-team pick, while outfielder Stephanie Field and designated player Lauren Collier were second-team selections. Bedwell, Emeterio and Figueroa were all first-team picks for UNCG.
• Legg paces two Furman regulars above .300 on the season, as she is hitting .330. Homesley is second on the team at .321 and shares the team lead with 11 RBI. Collier has a team-best three homers and 11 RBI.
• As a team, Furman is last in the SoCon with a .243 average and five home runs.
• In the circle, Lakyn Shull is 4-5 with a 1.62 ERA and a SoCon-best three saves. Hannah Bradley is 3-5 with a 2.49 ERA, while Shelby Parker is 2-1 (4.78 ERA) and Collier is 1-6 with a 5.41 mark.
- UNCG -