Softball Travels to Alabama State for Hornet Invitational
GREENSBORO, N.C. – After opening the season 3-0 last weekend, the UNCG softball team heads to Alabama State to take part in the Hornet Invitational from Friday, Feb. 15 through Sunday, Feb. 17. The Spartans will open the tournament against Belmont with first pitch scheduled at noon eastern time.
UNCG (3-0) will take on tournament host Alabama State Friday at 5 p.m. eastern time followed by two more contests against Eastern Illinois and Belmont on Saturday. The Spartans will conclude the tournament with a rematch against Eastern Illinois at 11 a.m. eastern time.
"I think we are swinging with confidence, we are making plays on defense and our pitchers are keeping us in games," said head coach Janelle Breneman. "I've been pleased with how the team is challenging themselves for the 2013 season. The team is looking at doing some great things and as coaches we want nothing more then to send this group of seniors out with an experience they will never forget."
The Spartans opened the season in style with three one-run victories against George Mason twice (W, 2-1, W, 5-4) and tournament host Charleston Southern (W, 5-4). UNCG also earned two comeback victories, including a four-run rally in the top of the seventh against Charleston Southern.
Freshman Lindsay Thomas (Irvine, Ca./Northwood) earned SoCon softball Player of the Week honors after hitting three home runs, including two game-winners last weekend. Thomas led UNCG with a .500 batting average, three runs, four hits, three home runs, and four RBI. She also led the team in on-base percentage (.600) and slugging percentage (1.625).
Senior Eileen Horsmon (Dunkirk, Md./Northern) and junior Aisha Figueroa (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes) each batted over .400 and both had four hits apiece. Figueroa also had two runs scored and a perfect 2-for-2 in stolen bases. Junior Katelyn Bedwell (Surrey, British Columbia/Elgin Park Secondary) had a clutch game-tying three-run home run against Charleston Southern as the Spartans hit four home runs last weekend.
In the circle, redshirt junior Raeanne Hanks (Rainier, Ore./Rainier Senior) returned after a season-ending injury last season and threw a complete game with seven strikeouts in game one. Hanks also earned the victory against George Mason in the finale to start the season 2-0. Freshman Kelly Lupton (Galloway, N.J./Absegami) earned her first career save against the Patriots.
Alabama State will be providing live stats for all the tournament games this weekend.
Belmont enters the tournament with a 2-2 record picking up victories against Jackson State (W, 7-4) and Valparaiso (W, 2-1 in eight innings). The Bruins are led by sophomore outfielder Kat Hollingsworth, who is batting .308 on four hits with three RBI. In the circle, freshman Carolyn Snodgress is 1-0 with a complete and a save during last week's tournament. Snodgress also has 13 strikeouts in 9.2 innings of work without allowing an earned run.
Alabama State (0-5) has yet to reach the win column in 2013 after dropping five-straight to start the season. Junior outfielder Meagan Dixon has opened the season on a tear with a .647 batting average on 11 hits, two doubles, a home run and two RBI. Also senior utility player Brehanna Rodrigues is hitting .500 (7-for-14) with a triple and a team-leading four RBI. In the circle, the Hornets have struggled posting a 12.84 team ERA, giving up 39 earned runs and 30 walks in five games played.
Eastern Illinois will open its spring campaign after being selected to finish second in the West Division of the Ohio Valley conference. The Panthers return 13 letterwinners, including eight position players and three pitchers from last year's squad. All-OVC honorees also set to return to the lineup include first team All-OVC award winner pitcher Stephanie Maday plus second team All-OVC honorees Melise Brown and Bailey O'Dell.
Be sure to follow all updates about the 2013 UNCG softball team on www.uncgspartans.com or on twitter @UNCGsports/@UNCGsoftball.
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