Feb. 28, 2013
THE FLATS – In the midst of a 14-game road swing, the Georgia Tech softball team hits the road for five games at the Citrus Classic in Orlando, Fla. Among Tech’s competition are two Top 25 teams in No. 14 Michigan and No.15/16 Louisville along with Fordham, Notre Dame and Temple.
Friday, March 1
1:15 p.m. vs. Fordham – GameTracker
3:30 p.m. vs. Michigan – GameTracker, free audio
Saturday, March 2
12:15 p.m. vs. Louisville – GameTracker, ESPN3
4:45 p.m. vs. Notre Dame – GameTracker, free audio
Sunday, March 3
9 a.m. vs. Temple – GameTracker
Georgia Tech (10-7)
The Yellow Jackets head into the tournament on a high note after rallying from a three-run deficit to defeat Jacksonville State, 9-7, in nine innings courtesy of a two-run homer off the bat of Hope Rush in the ninth inning.
Rush pitched all nine innings against the Gamecocks for her eighth complete game of the season. She leads the pitching staff with a 3.19 ERA and 72.1 innings pitched.
Five Yellow Jackets are hitting above .300 and two of the five are batting over .400 in Hayley Downs (.435) and Ashley Thomas (.429). Ashley Thomas leads the team with 19 runs on 24 hits and 14 stolen bases.
Georgia Tech is receiving votes in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll.
Yellow Jackets vs. the Competition
Series Record: GT leads, 3-1
Last Meeting: Feb. 13, 2011 – Georgia Tech defeated the Rams, 3-1, at the NTC Elite Tournament in Clearwater, Fla.
Scouting the Rams: Fordham is 4-6 on the season after dropping all five contests at the NFCA Leadoff Classic last weekend in Clearwater, Fla. The Rams are led by Jamie Labovick’s .333 average and are batting .247 as a team.
Series Record: Michigan leads, 2-0
Last Meeting: Feb. 25, 2005 – Michigan defeated Georgia Tech, 3-1, at the NFCA Leadoff Classic in Columbus, Ga.
Scouting the Wolverines: Michigan is 10-3 on the season and ranked No. 14 in both softball polls. Michigan’s offense is balanced as eight players are batting over .300, seven of whom have at least 10 hits. Caitlin Blanchard leads the Wolverines with a .400 average and 14 hits.
Louisville – ESPN3
Series Record: 0-0
Scouting the Cardinals: Louisville (12-2) is No. 15 in the USA Today/NFCA coaches’ poll and No. 16 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate poll. The Cardinals are batting .328 as a team with seven players hitting over .300 on the season. Sophomore Kayla Soles leads the team with a .440 average and has 12 RBI.
Series Record: ND leads, 3-0
Last Meeting: Feb. 29, 2004 – Notre Dame won 2-1 at the NFCA Leadoff Classic in Columbus, Ga.
Scouting the Irish: Notre Dame (8-5) has won four straight games and is receiving votes in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll. The Irish are led by Emilee Koerner’s impressive .523 batting average, 23 hits, 12 runs, five doubles and 12 RBI.
Series Record: 0-0
Scouting the Owls: Temple (1-3) opened its season last weekend at the Phoenix Clash Tournament in Elon, N.C. and recorded its only win against Saint Peter’s, 12-2. Lacey McKeon leads the team with five hits and five runs.
Take Your Base
>> The Jackets are patient at the plate and the stats show it.
>> Tech has been walked 70 times in 17 games for an average of 4.11 walks per game. Every Yellow Jacket with at least three at bats has been walked at least once.
>> Senior Hope Rush has a team-high 13 walks, followed by junior Alysha Rudnik (11).
>> The 70 walks lead the ACC. The closest team is Virginia Tech with 47.
>> Tech has hit 26 doubles on the season already.
>> The Jackets average 1.5 doubles per game.
>> Sophomore Katie Johnsky leads the team with six two-baggers.
>> As a team, Tech hit a season-high four doubles twice this season -Butler (Feb. 8) and Jacksonville State (2/27).
>> Junior Ashley Thomas is second on the team with a .429 batting average and leads the team with 19 runs, 24 hits and two triples.
>> Thomas has reached base safely in all 17 games this season and currently enjoys a 16-game hitting streak.
>> The McKinney, Texas native, went 3-for-5 with three runs, two RBI, one double and two stolen bases against Jacksonville State Wednesday.