Oct. 27, 2009
HUNTINGTON, W.Va.- Marshall University softball head coach Shonda Stanton released the 2010 schedule Tuesday afternoon. Slated for the Herd are 25 home games at Dot Hicks Field in a tough field of 56 games.
“We value the number of home contests we have secured to play at Dot Hicks Field,” said head coach Shonda Stanton. “Our team appreciates our first class venue and enjoys playing in front of our fan base.”
The Herd welcomes seven newcomers to a squad that went 31-20 overall and 11-10 in Conference USA action in 2009. The club, which returns six starters, is slated to face five teams that advanced to the 2009 NCAA tournament, including Women’s College World Series runner-up Florida.
Conferences the Herd will face on the schedule include the Big 10 (Michigan State), Big 12 (Kansas), Atlantic 10 (Charlotte, Dayton and Delaware) and the Big East (Seton Hall).
Top returners to the team include Katie Murphree, the 2009 Conference USA co-newcomer of the year and NFCA first team all-region selections Caitlyn Jackson and Melanie Stoehr.
MU softball will kick off the 2010 season Feb. 12 at the Stetson Lead-Off Classic in DeLand, Fla. The Herd will also travel to the Florida Tournament in Gainesville, Fla. (Feb. 19-21) and the UNC Charlotte Green and White Tournament in Charlotte, N.C., (26-28) before returning to Dot Hicks Field to host the second-annual Marshall Tournament (March 5-7).
The squad will face 2009 NCAA regional qualifier Campbell and WCWS runner-up Florida in Gainesville, Fla., and will battle regional participant Boston University in Charlotte, N.C. The Herd will face its fourth NCAA qualifier at the Marshall Tournament, when it plays regional qualifier Cleveland State.
C-USA action opens March 13 with a trip to El Paso, Texas, with the Herd pitted against UTEP. The Herd will be on the road for conference games against East Carolina (March 27-28), Memphis (April 2-3) and Southern Miss (April 24-25).
“The level of C-USA softball continues to rise and proves to be a battle each and every weekend,” said Stanton. “With the competition we will face on the road early, we will be tested and prepared to successfully compete from start to finish.”
MU will start conference games on March 19 against UAB. Other home conference games include UCF (April 10-11), Houston (May 1-2) and the Herd’s fifth NCAA qualifier on the schedule, Tulsa (May 8-9).
Other non-conference games MU will host are Valparaiso (March 9), Ohio (April 13), Wright State (April 14) and Dayton (April 18).
“Our coaching staff has been pleased with the progress we have seen from our players this fall,” Stanton said. “This is an impressive group of athletes coming together as one team with one goal and we will be exciting to watch.”
Check herdzone.com for the most up-to-date game times.