The UConn softball team has their last series of the regular season on the horizon and it will be a challenging one, taking on the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes.
For seniors Jill Stockley and Kelli Bates, these will be their last games in front of a home crowd in their collegiate careers.
Tulsa is 33-16 on the season and 14-4 in conference, as they are sitting just two games out of first place. They have a chance to win the conference if they go 3-0 this weekend and USF gets swept by Wichita State, so the Huskies will be looking to prevent some celebration on their own dirt.
The Golden Hurricanes have the best hitter in the conference on their side, Julia Hollingsworth. Hollingsworth is hitting a whopping .420 on the season which is a full 40 points ahead of the next best in the conference, Arielle James of Houston. She’s also third in the conference in on-base percentage with a clean .500, and is top-five in runs scored, walks and triples.
As a team, Tulsa is third in the conference in batting average despite having Hollingsworth inflating their average, which is understandable considering they have just one other player hitting above .300. They also don’t hit for much power, as their 22 home runs are third to last in the conference.
They do have one of the better pitching staffs in the conference, but it is by no means unhittable. Chenise Delce leads the team with a 1.68 ERA through 116.2 innings pitched, and fellow pitchers Samantha Pochop and Kassidy Scott also have good ERAs (2.42 and 3.01 respectively) through 100 or more innings. Their team ERA of 2.77 is fourth in the conference, behind UCF’s 1.92 and ahead of UConn’s 3.00.
Tulsa has not lost a conference series all season, even taking two out of three from USF at the beginning of conference play. However, they only managed two sweeps over the course of conference play, dropping games to Houston, UCF and Wichita State along the way to put them in second in the conference.
After this series, the team will head to Houston for the American Athletic Conference softball tournament where they will get a chance to earn their spot in the NCAA softball tournament if they win.
Jorge Eckardt is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.