March 1, 2013
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
Idle the past two weeks, Army's softball team (2-3) is back in action this weekend with the team heading to Norfolk, Va., as part of the four-team field participating at the Spartan Classic hosted by Norfolk State at the NSU Softball Field.
The Black Knights open against Delaware State Saturday morning at 9 a.m. and close with the host Spartans at 1 p.m. the first day. Army closes out its two-day competition with a 9 a.m. game against Marist and takes on host Norfolk State for the second time in the tournament Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.
Fans unable to make the trip to Norfolk can follow the action with live stats for each of Army's games via GameTracker by logging onto the official athletics website (www.goARMYsports.com) and navigating to the softball page. Twitter updates will also be offered via the official handle of the Black Knights (@Army_WSoftball).
A live video feed tournament access pass will be available on Norfolk State's site at www.nsuspartans.com for a cost of $5 for a single game or $8 for a doubleheader pass. Fans must purchase the passes the day of the contest.
Weather has caused problems for the Black Knights this year as Army lost all four games the weekend of Feb. 16-17 when snow forced the cancellation of the Charlotte Classic in North Carolina. The forecast is favorable this weekend as Army looks to get on dirt as snow and sleet still cover the field at the Army Softball Complex.
In its last competition (Feb. 8-9), Army outhit the field at the Plainsman Invitational batting .279 with junior Marina Northup leading the way offensively with a .417 batting average, along with five runs batted in and a team-best .667 slugging and .563 on-base percentages.
Freshman outfielder Christian McKone is next batting .400 with a team-high six runs scored and .571 on-base percentage. Sophomore Ali Cleinmark is batting .333 and shows a .500 on-base percentage. Also wielding a hot bat in just two at-bats is freshman Bernadette Cardon who is 2-for-2 with four runs scored in two plate appearances as a pinch hitter.
In the circle, sophomore Morgan Lashley (1-3, 6.20 ERA) has been the workhorse pitching 20.1 innings with 14 strikeouts. Freshman Braetana Roy (1-0, 2.08 ERA) has appeared in three games with a start and a win followed by sophomore Jewels Steurer who has pitched 2.0 innings in relief.
ABOUT NORFOLK STATE (2-3)
The Spartans split a doubleheader with North Carolina Central to open the season, were swept by Monmouth and defeated Fairleigh Dickinson last weekend in the Spartan Clash that was scaled down due to inclement weather.
Alina Moriarity and Whitney Willliams lead the team offensively batting .375 and .3576, respectively, and both have driven in three runs. Moriarity has a team-best four runs scored as the Spartans are hitting .256 as a team.
In the circle, Jamie Sculle (2-2, 1.88 ERA) has drawn the bulk of pitching over 18.2 innings with 10 strikeouts and just five earned runs. As a team, the pitchers have combined for a 3.97 ERA. The Spartans are members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
The Blue Hens, members of the Colonial Athletic Association, are 6-2 on the season following a 2-2 showing at the Jacksonville Invitational last weekend. Delaware posted wins over Seton Hall (5-2) and Mt. St. Mary's (5-4 in 8 inn.), and fell to South Alabama (1-0), a team that received votes in the national top 25 poll, and host Jacksonville (8-2).
The Blue Hens are paced by freshman centerfielder Hannah George, who is batting .588 with 10 hits and four runs scored. Senior third baseman Lara Andrews is hitting .400 with team-highs of 11 hits, three home runs, eight RBI and six runs scored, while freshman second baseman Tori Conrad is hitting .353 and freshman outfielder Shelby Jones is batting .333. Delaware is hitting .293 as a team and its opponents are batting .248.
Rookie Kiersten Coffman is 2-0 with a stingy 0.81 earned run average to lead the UD pitching staff, which shows a 1.84 ERA, and freshman Taylor Curran is 1-1 with a 2.33 ERA.
Marist, picked second in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), opens its season at the Spartan Classic. The Red Foxes are coming off a 28-27 campaign last year in which they finished fourth in the MAAC with a 9-7 league record. Danielle Koltz batted .314 with eight home runs and 39 RBI for Marist, while Emily Osterhaus was 11-10 with a 3.73 ERA.
Following this weekend's action, Army will travel to Florida for the Rebel Spring Games. The Black Knights open their eight-game schedule Monday afternoon, March, 11, against Wagner followed by Robert Morris
Saturday, March 2
Army vs. Delaware, 9 a.m.
Army at Norfolk State, 1 p.m.
Sunday, March 3
Army vs. Marist, 9 a.m.
Army at Norfolk State, 1 p.m.