Spartans head down to Buzz Classic for final tournament
UNCG at the Buzz Classic, March 4-6, Woodstock, Ga. (hosted by Georgia Tech)
• UNCG will head down to Woodstock, Ga., this weekend for the Buzz Classic, the Spartans' final regular-season tournament action before beginning doubleheader play.
• The Spartans (7-8) will face Western Kentucky and Evansville on Friday, Connecticut and Massachusetts on Saturday and UAB on Sunday.
• UNCG is participating in the Buzz for the second straight year and the fourth time (2002, 2004) overall. UNCG is 7-6 all-time at the Buzz, going 2-2 in 2002 and 2004 and 3-2 there last season. Pitcher Cory Mattson earned a spot on the Buzz Classic All-Tournament Team last season after posting a 3-0 record and a 0.70 ERA at the tournament.
• After winning Charlotte's First Pitch Classic from Feb. 18-20, UNCG struggled at its own Spartan Classic last weekend, dropping its first four games before topping Morehead State in the consolation game Sunday.
• Through 15 games, redshirt senior Kaitlin Merkt is hitting a team-best .419 with two homers and 12 RBI to pace six regulars hitting over .300. Bedwell is second on the team at .370, followed by Aisha Figueroa (.349), Emeterio (.326), April Langley (.303) and Jordan Jewett (.300).
• UNCG is 2-0 against Evansville, 0-1 against Connecticut and has never faced Western Kentucky, Massachusetts and UAB. UNCG topped Evansville twice in 1993 at the Rebel Games in Orlando, Fla. The Spartans fell to Connecticut 8-2 in 2004 at the Buzz Classic.
• Western Kentucky is off to an 8-4 start on the season, including a 7-0 mark in neutral contests. The Hilltoppers went 5-0 at the Red & Blue Classic in Oxford, Miss., last weekend, topping Austin Peay, Ole Miss, Louisiana Tech and Southeast Missouri State. Amanda Thomas is hitting a team-best .417, while preseason All-Sun Belt pick Mallorie Sulaski is hitting .342. Sulaski is 3-1 with a 1.17 ERA in the circle, while Kim Wagner is 3-2 with a 2.75 ERA and Dana Nathanson is 2-1 with a 4.50 mark. The Hilltoppers and Spartans have one common opponent so far, with WKU dropping a doubleheader to Eastern Kentucky and UNCG beating EKU twice at the First Pitch Classic.
• Evansville is 1-9 on the season so far, with its lone win coming against Southeastern Louisiana at the South Alabama Tournament to open the season. In their most recent game, the Purple Aces fell to No. 7 Tennessee, 7-0. Last weekend, Evansville went 0-4 at the Southern Miss Tournament. Jen Stahlhut is hitting a team-best .367, while Katie Sears is hitting .355. In the circle, Emily Morris is 1-3 with a 10.61 ERA. Kendall Kautz is 0-2 with a 5.21 mark.
• UMass is 2-8 on the year with both wins coming at the season-opening FAU Kickoff Classic. Last weekend, the Minutewomen went 0-5 at the Cathedral City Classic. Kyllie Magill is hitting .323 but is the only player over .300 for the Minutewomen. Sara Plourde is 2-6 with a 2.62 ERA on the year. Lindsey Webster is 0-2 with a 2.42 ERA.
• Connecticut is 2-3 on the year, having opened its season last week at a different FAU tournament. The Huskies opened with three straight losses before topping Kent State and Jacksonville to close the tournament. Julianne Towers is hitting .375 and Kim Silva is at .333. Kiki Saveriano is 1-2 with a 5.48 ERA and Ali Adelman is 1-1 with a 2.33 ERA.
• UAB is 10-6 on the season, winning four games at the Magic City Classic hosted cohosted with Samford last weekend. The Blazers then downed Mississippi State 8-0 in 6 innings on Tuesday. Kayla Orr is leading the team with a .375 average and Kate Armstrong is hitting .326. In the circle, Lauren Webster is 4-2 with a 1.04 ERA. Leigh Streetman is 3-2 with a 1.28 mark.
UNCG at the Buzz Classic
Friday, March 4
UNCG vs. Western Kentucky, 4 p.m.
UNCG vs. Evansville, 6 p.m.
Saturday, March 5
UNCG vs. Massachusetts, 11 a.m.
UNCG vs. Connecticut, 4 p.m.
Sunday, March 6
UNCG vs. UAB, 11 a.m.
- UNCG -