BALTIMORE – UMBC softball is set to host the 10th annual Dawg Pound Invitational over the weekend. The Retrievers will welcome four teams to the UMBC Softball Stadium from Friday, March 14 through Sunday, March 16 for 11 total games. UMBC will play five games throughout the weekend.
The schedule for the weekend has been updated due to the low overnight temperatures that are expected in the Baltimore area.
UMBC (14-5) is off to its best start since 2010, despite an 8-0 loss to Towson in its latest contest. The Retrievers are batting .304 as a team, with senior Chelsea Bertoglio (Laguna Hills, Calif./Laguna Hills/Saddleback College) and junior Taylor Hall (Cosby, Va./Cosby) each batting over .400 for the season. The two have combined for 11 doubles, five home runs and 41 RBI thus far. Bertoglio, the reigning America East Player of the Week, had a monster day in Tuesday's doubleheader against Rhode Island, going four-for-six from the plate with three home runs, including a grand slam in game two.
The Retrievers have gotten great production from their freshmen in the circle, led by Jessica Holte's (Ashland, Va./Atlee) 9-1 record. Holte has tossed 63.2 innings, striking out 27 batters and walking just three. America East Rookie of the Week Kelly Lane (Albany, N.Y./Colonie Central) has already tossed UMBC's first-ever perfect game and a shutout in her young career. She has a team-best 31 strikeouts and is holding opponents to a .259 batting average.
Rhode Island (3-10) snapped a five-game skid with a pair of victories at UMES on Wednesday afternoon. Freshman pitcher Ashley Dumoulin and sophomore pitcher Caitlin Kennedy each picked up their first collegiate victories in the doubleheader against the Hawks. Senior Jocelyn Mattison connected on her 10th career home run, a three-run shot in the third inning of game two, while sophomore Taylor Archer went 4-for-6 from the dish for the day and batted in one run.
Niagara (4-8) went 3-5 at the Rebel Spring Games in Winter Haven, Fla., last week. Junior Ambur Farmer earned College Sports Madness' MAAC Softball Player of the Week after batting .421 and driving in five runs. Farmer is batting a team-best .321 from the dish, while freshman Bridget Hogan leads the squad with seven runs batted in. Senior pitcher Jennifer Sansano has tallied three wins in four decisions in the circle.
Drexel (4-9) has dropped three of its last four, including Hampton taking two of three against the Dragons on Monday and Tuesday. Freshman Baeley Reed earned Colonial Athletic Association's Rookie of the Week honors after batting .500 (8-for-16) with four extra base hits. Junior Leticia Matsuoka joins Reed as the only Dragons hitting above .400 on the season. Matsuoka is batting a team-best .484 with 14 runs batted in. In the circle, senior Shelby Taylor has posted a 3-3 mark and leads the team with 33 strikeouts.
Hampton (9-8) has won four of its last five contests, including two-of-three against Drexel on Monday and Tuesday. Red-shirt junior Margaret Wilkins and freshman Danielle Budden are both batting above .300 on the year. Wilkins' .417 on-base percentage leads the team and her 12 runs batted in ranks second. Sophomore Taylor McCoy has a team-best 13 RBI and five extra base hits. In the circle, junior Jailynn Jackson has recorded six wins for the Pirates and leads the squad with 73.2 innings of work.
Tournament Schedule (as of 3/12/14)
Friday, March 14
11:15 a.m. Rhode Island vs. Drexel
1:30 p.m. UMBC vs. Drexel
3:45 p.m. UMBC vs. Rhode Island
Saturday, March 15
9:30 a.m. Rhode Island vs. Hampton
11:30 a.m. Niagara vs. Rhode Island
1:45 p.m. UMBC vs. Niagara
3:45 p.m. Drexel vs. Hampton
Sunday, March 16
9:30 a.m. Niagara vs. Drexel
11:30 p.m. Hampton vs. Niagara
1:45 p.m. UMBC vs. Drexel
3:45 p.m. UMBC vs. Hampton