Bucs to play five games in three days
KENNESAW, Ga. (Feb. 24, 2022) – ETSU Softball looks to build off its strong weekend in North Carolina with a trip to Middle Georgia for the I-75 Tournament in both Kennesaw, Ga. and Atlanta, Ga. The Bucs (4-5) will take on a trio of opponents over a span of three days, beginning with Kennesaw State on Friday and ending the tournament against the Owls on Sunday.
Date: Friday, Feb. 23 – Sunday, Feb. 25
Location: Kennesaw, Ga. | Bailey Park | Atlanta, Ga. | Shirley Clements Mewborn Field
Teams: ETSU (4-5), Georgia State (2-6), Georgia Tech (10-2), Kennesaw State (2-6)
Weather: Friday (High 64; Low 41 – Rain); Saturday (High 59; Low 46 – Overcast); Sunday (High 57; Low 38 – Rain)
Live Stats: ETSUBucs.com
Game Notes: ETSU
Twitter Updates: @ETSUSoftball
The Bucs have already surpassed the 2021 and 2020 spring totals of stolen bases and we are only nine games into the season. The Blue & Gold have successfully swiped 31-of-38 stolen base attempts. In 2021 the Bucs stole 21 bases and 28 in the shortened 2020 COVID-19 season. ETSU’s 31 stolen bases already rank 13th in the 22-year history of the program. ETSU is on pace to break the program record of 93 stolen bases set in 2005. The Bucs successfully swiped a program-record 11 stolen bases in the win over Morehead State on Saturday, Feb. 19.
The Bucs have seen a strong start through the first two weekends, including a trio of newcomers. Montreat transfer Sara Muir (Sequatchie, Tenn.) is second on the team in batting average (.318) with seven hits, two doubles, one home run and six RBIs. Muir has also swiped 4-of-5 stolen bases. Catawba College transfer, Riley Tucker (Mount Pleasant, N.C.) is hitting .279 with seven hits and three RBIs. Tucker also leads the team in ERA with a 1.47 mark with 14.1 innings pitched and a .200 batting average. The third newcomer that has contributed strongly is freshman infielder Riley Nayadley (Ooltewah, Tenn.). The Tennessee native is batting .250 with six hits, one double and three RBIs. Nayadley also has recorded 10 putouts and 10 assists.
ETSU will face a trio of teams in the I-75 Tournament that the Bucs haven’t had the biggest success against. The Bucs will begin the tournament against Kennesaw State on Friday and will conclude the event with a showdown against the Owls. ETSU is 5-19 all-time against Kennessaw State, including 3-11 when playing in Kennesaw, Ga. Next up on the docket will be Georgia State, a squad that holds a 5-0 all-time record against the Bucs. The final squad that ETSU will square off against will be Georgia Tech on Saturday. The Bucs are 0-2 all-time against the Yellow Jackets, both games being played on neutral grounds.
Hoo are the Owls?
Kennesaw State is 2-6 on the season through two weekends, earning wins over Loyola Chicago and Mercer in the opening tournament in Tallahassee, Fla. The Owls most recently dropped four consecutive games to Southern Conference foe, Samford. Two of the four losses were by one run, while the other two were five-run deficits. Cheyanne Sales leads Kennesaw State in batting with a .348 average and a team-high eight hits, five of which are extra-base knocks. Emily Perrin holds the best ERA in the circle with a 3.48 mark in 10.1 innings pitched.
Panthers on the Prowl
Georgia State enters the tournament with a 2-6 overall mark on the season with wins over Indiana State and Western Carolina. The Panthers have dropped six of the last seven games on the season and are 1-2 this season in neutral games. Bailee Richardson is Georgia State’s leading hitter with a .417 average and three home runs and nine RBIs. Julia Allen holds an 0.78 ERA in 9.0 innings of work, while Emily Buck is 0-2 with a 3.63 average.
Looking to Avoid the Sting
Georgia Tech is the top dog of the tournament with a 10-2 overall record, having won three consecutive games. The Yellow Jackets are 7-0 in home games early on, including a 5-0 win over Furman on Tuesday and a 9-1 triumph over Georgia State on Wednesday. Tricia Awald is batting .559 with 19 hits in 12 games, including two long balls and 10 RBIs. Five different players are batting over .300 for Georgia Tech, while three individuals have at least 10 RBIs or more. Blake Neleman is 6-1 in the circle with a 1.01 ERA in 41.2 innings and 61 strikeouts. Meanwhile, Chandler Dennis is 3-1 with a 1.96 ERA in 25.0 innings of work.
For more information on Buccaneer softball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the softball link.