CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – The Chattanooga Mocs softball team enters its ninth NCAA Regional berth Friday with a 5:30 p.m. first pitch against hosting No. 4 Georgia in Athens, Ga. UTC takes its second trip to Athens for a regional, with its first coming in 2004 after winning the Southern Conference regular season and tournament championship.
Joining the Mocs and Bulldogs in Athens are UAB and North Carolina State. Georgia claimed the SEC Tournament crown, while UAB and North Carolina State earned bids to the tournament based on RPI. The Bulldogs are the No. 1, Wolfpack the No. 2 and UAB the No. 3 seed in the region. Chattanooga enters as the No. 4 seed.
Chattanooga enters the region after winnings its 12th SoCon Championship Saturday. UTC defeated UNCG 4-3 in Greensboro, N.C., to earn its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2011.
Georgia holds the all-time series advantage over Chattanooga with a 4-1 mark. The two teams first met in 1999, splitting a doubleheader in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Bulldogs won the first game 3-0 while the Mocs claimed the second 5-4. Georgia has won the last three meetings - all three coming in Athens, Ga.
The two programs last met in 2011 as part of the Bulldog Classic at Jack Turner Stadium. Chattanooga came up just one run short, 4-3, to the then-No. 1 Bulldogs. UTC went on to win the Southern Conference Championship; its last championship before 2014.
Overall, UTC is 6-16 in regional appearances. Its most successful rounds came in 2002 and 2011 when Chattanooga won two games each. The Mocs advanced in the championship game both years, taking on Florida State in 2002 and Alabama in 2011.
Chattanooga is 0-2 against teams from the South Eastern Conference in regional play. Both of UTC’s SEC losses are against Alabama. The Tide defeated the Mocs 8-0 May 15, 2008 in the first round of the year’s regional, and 11-2 May 22, 2011 in the region championship.
The winner of the 5:30 p.m. games take on the winner of the 2:30 p.m. contest between North Carolina State and UAB. The loser will play the loser of the aforementioned game. Live stats are available free while a free video/audio feed is also available through GeorgiaDogs.com. Links for both feeds can be found on the GoMocs.com softball schedule page.