April 9, 2009
ORLANDO, Fla. -
The Marshall University softball team looks to continue to stay atop the Conference USA standings as they are sets to compete against UCF Friday and Saturday in Orlando.
The Thundering Herd (21-10, 7-2) enter this weekend coming off a sweep of Memphis last weekend and a midweek pair of wins over Radford. The Knights (19-21, 4-8) are coming off a win over Stetson Wednesday.
In the doubleheader against Radford, Marshall took game one thanks to a big third inning scoring five runs and took game two to the wire as freshman Rebecca Gamby (Mount Victory, Ohio) blasted a solo shot to dead center in the bottom of the eighth.
The Herd and Knights will meet for the 14th time in Friday's game one as the series goes back to 2002. The first three games were played on neutral sites with UCF taking two of three contests.
When the two teams met for the first time as members of C-USA in 2006, Marshall swept the Knights in convincing fashion. The next season, UCF managed to take two out of three in Orlando as well as a meeting in May in the conference tournament.
With two wins in 2007 and last season's sweep in Huntington, the Knights are currently on a five game winning streak against the Herd. Game three of last year went eight innings as UCF scored six runs in the top half and going on to win 6-1.
UCF is led offensively by preseason C-USA team member Breanna Javier, Abby McClain and Tiffany Lane.
Javier leads the team in RBIs with 26 and McClain leads in home runs (4) and hits (47). Lane is in the top three in all these categories and leads the team in triples with seven.
In the circle, the Knights primarily use two starting pitchers in Ashleigh Cole and Kristina DeMello. Cole leads the team in ERA, wins and strikeouts.
The series begins with a doubleheader Friday at 3 p.m. EST and a single game Saturday at 12:00 p.m. EST. Gametracker will be available for all contests.