CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – The Chattanooga Mocs softball team enters its final early-season tournament of 2014 this weekend as UTC travels to Clearwater, Fla., to compete in the USF Under Armour Showcase. The annual spring break trip pins the Mocs against Seton Hall, Utah, Central Michigan, Fordham and Toledo over three days in the Sunshine State.
The 10-9 Mocs go into the weekend coming off a 2-3 week in Gulfport, Miss., at the Mississippi Gulf Coast Classic. Both sophomore Katie Henderson (Hixson, Tenn.) and junior Taylor Deason (Clarksville, Tenn.) picked up wins, and freshman Jesslyn Stockard (Ringgold, Ga.) and sophomore Alyssa Taylor (Orange, Calif.) continued their tears at the plate with a homerun each against Ohio.
Alyssa Taylor continues to pace the Mocs with five homeruns while Stockard follows closely behind with three. Sophomore Anyssa Robles (Lawrenceville, Ga.) leads the Chattanooga battery with a .345 batting average and sophomore outfielder Sam Taylor (Chickamauga, Ga.) is the team’s hits leader with 20 in the leadoff spot. Taylor also leads Chattanooga with 17 runs scored. Sophomore Criket Blanco (Maryville, Tenn.) has driven in the most of Chattanooga’s runs with 16 RBI.
Deason looks to continue her dominance in the circle, carrying her 0.82 ERA to Clearwater. The veteran is 5-4 on the season with two complete games under her belt. The junior has one solo-shutout and has combined for one shutout, while also recording the team’s only save. Henderson follows with a 4-3 record with a 2.35 ERA. Henderson has also tossed a shutout.
Seton Hall is on schedule first for the Mocs Friday at 2:15 p.m. The Pitates are 3-12 and 2-9 at neutral sites. The Big East school claims its three wins over Drexel, Delaware State and Massachusetts-Lowell. Playing a very though schedule this season, the Pirates have taken on Arizona State, Boston College, New Mexico State and UNLV during their pre-conference tournaments.
Chattanooga meets up with Utah Friday evening at 4:30 p.m. for just the second time in program history. Utah holds a 1-0 advantage on the Mocs, winning the only meeting to-date 2-1 in 2000. Thus far, Utah is 7-5 through three tournaments. Its best weekend came at the UNLV Easton Desert Classic in Las Vegas, Nev., as the Utes were 4-1 with wins over Toledo, UTEP, Long Beach State and Seattle University. Its only loss was to Hawai’I, 11-7. Other notable wins for Utah this season include Ole Miss and Boise State.
Saturday’s games at 11:15 a.m. and 4 p.m. feature Central Michigan and Fordham, respectively. The Chippewas enter the tournament at 8-6 and have won four of their last six games. Central Michigan was 3-2 last weekend at the Cardinal Invitational in Louisville, Ky. The Chippewas won over Northern Kentucky in five innings and defeated both Eastern Kentucky and IUPUI.
Fordham enters with one win over the Mocs already, taking the first game of the season 3-12 in Orlando, Fla., at the UCF Knights Invitational. Since then, the Rams have added five wins and 12 losses to their record, making Fordham 7-12 on the season. Notable wins since their meeting with Chattanooga include a 4-3 win over Ole Miss and a 2-1 win over Syracuse.
The Mocs wrap up the weekend Sunday at 11:15 a.m. against Toledo. The Rockets have competed in two of the same tournaments Chattanooga has this season, present at both the Easton Desert Classic and the Frost Classic in Chattanooga. The Rockets are 4-10 in 2014, and have spent one week in Florida already, going 1-4 in the USF Under Armour Invitational in Clearwater.
Before reaching the Mocs Sunday, Toledo has to face the Dutch National Team in an exhibition game, then Boston University, St. John’s, LIU Brooklyn and Maine as part of the USF Under Armour Showcase.
All games are available to view via live stats, and play-by-play audio is available free for each game through Mocs Vision. Both audio and live stat feeds begin approximately 15 minutes before first pitch.