GW Softball Unveils 2014 Schedule
Colonials to Travel to Long Beach State, LSU for Early Season Tournaments
Oct. 25, 2013
WASHINGTON - Tournaments against top competition at Long Beach State, LSU and UNC Greensboro highlight the 2014 GW Softball schedule, Head Coach Stacey Schramm announced today.
The Colonials open the season on the West Coast at the Beach Invitational hosted by Long Beach State from Feb. 7-9, where they will face Cal State Fullerton and NCAA Super Regional participant Kentucky, which finished the season ranked 12th in the nation, as well as Kent State and Long Beach State, who were each regular-season runners-up in their respective conferences.
The following weekend, GW will head south to Baton Rouge, La., for a tournament hosted by top-20 team and NCAA Regional participant LSU from Feb. 14-16. In addition to the host Tigers, the Colonials will take on Big Ten foes Northwestern and Penn State at the invitational. GW will also take part in UNC Greensboro's tournament from Feb. 21-23, squaring off against three NCAA Regionals participants - Minnesota, Army and Hampton - as well as the host Spartans, who finished 2013 as runners-up in the Southern Conference Championship.
"These will be exciting matchups for our players," said Coach Schramm. "We'll get to see great pitching, hitting and defense. The only way that we'll be able to keep up with these teams is if we `bring it' to the field ourselves. I believe that at our best, we give ourselves a chance to beat anyone. Playing such tough opponents in consecutive weeks will help our players to set a standard of emotion, determination and focus that needs to be brought to every single game."
The Colonials begin a 29-game homestand on Feb. 25 against Delaware State before hosting the Colonial Classic from Feb. 28-March 2, with Providence, Drexel and Akron participating. Following a game against UMBC on March 4, the Colonials will welcome Howard, Binghamton and Wagner to the GW Softball Field on the Mount Vernon Campus for the Colonials Tournament on March 7-9.
After back-to-back doubleheaders against Mount St. Mary's (March 11) and Liberty (March 12), GW will host its final tournament, the Capital Invitational, March 14-16, with St. Francis (Pa.), Manhattan and Brown taking part.
Other non-conference highlights include home games against Colgate (March 20), Morgan State (March 30) and Cornell (April 2) and road trips to Hampton (April 16) and district rival Georgetown (April 22).
"This year's schedule is the toughest we've had since my arrival, and potentially since the program's establishment 11 years ago," said Coach Schramm.
Atlantic 10 Conference play begins on March 22 with a home doubleheader against defending A-10 champion Fordham. The Colonials will also host Massachusetts (March 29), La Salle (April 5), Saint Louis (April 25-26) and Dayton (April 27), and they will visit league newcomer George Mason (April 9), St. Bonaventure (April 13), 2013 A-10 regular-season champion Saint Joseph's (April 19) and Rhode Island (May 3).
The six-team Atlantic 10 Championship will take place from May 7-10 at Fordham University. The Colonials reached the tournament for the second year in a row in 2013 after posting the program's first-ever winning season. GW returns 10 letterwinners from that squad, including A-10 All-Conference second-team pitcher Courtney Martin and two-time team MVP Victoria Valos.
"Although last season was the best season for the program in the record books, this team feels that they have unfinished business to take care of," said Coach Schramm. "They're more determined than ever to get that first-place trophy and a bid to the NCAA Regional Tournament. Our 2014 schedule puts them in a great position to build their confidence and level of play heading into A-10s."