Feb. 20, 2014
Friday, February 21 | 12:30 p.m.| Georgetown vs. Gardner-Webb | Live Stats
Saturday, February 22 | 10 a.m. | Georgetown vs. UNC-Wilmington | Live Stats
Sunday, February 23 | 10 a.m. | Georgetown vs. Boston University | Live Stats
Sunday, February 23 | 12:30 p.m. | Georgetown vs. Michigan State | Live Stats
REVISION: The game on Friday, Feb. 21 against Gardner-Webb has been delayed until 12:30 p.m. It was originally scheduled for 10 a.m.
WASHINGTON – The Georgetown University softball team (2-3) heads down to Columbia, S.C. for the 2014 Gamecock Invitational, hosted by the University of South Carolina. The Hoyas will play Gardner-Webb (1-7) on Fri., Feb 21 at 12:30 p.m. followed by UNC-Wilmington (4-3) on Sat., Feb. 22 at 10 a.m. GU will close the Invitational with a doubleheader on Sunday against Boston University (0-0), at 10 a.m., and Michigan State (2-5), at 12:30 p.m.
Georgetown did not play last weekend due to the cancellation of the Longwood Lancer Leadoff Tournament.
In the minimum amount of plate appearances and games (five) for the Hoyas this season, sophomore Taylor Henry (Front Royal, Va./Skyline) leads the team with four hits and a .400 batting average. Senior Hannah Slovacek (Austin, Texas/Westlake) has a team-best five runs batted in and two extra-base hits. Junior Megan Hyson (Pasadena, Md./Chesapeake) and senior Elyse Graziano (Floral Park, N.Y./Sacred Heart Academy), who both have not stuck out this season, have drawn four and three walks, respectively, to lead the Hoyas. Sophomore Samantha Giovanniello (Floral Park, N.Y./Floral Park Memorial) has reached base in her last four game and brings a three-game hitting streak into this weekend’s matchups.
Pitchers Lauren O'Leary (La Canada, Calif./La Canada), a junior, and Megan Hyson started on the rubber for Georgetown’s five games from the Florida Gulf Coast Invitational. O’Leary is 1-1 across 13 innings with 10 strikeouts to only two walks. She boasts a 1.63 earned run average. Hyson is 1-2 across 17.1 innings while facing a total of 63 batters who she has limited to a .254 batting average.
As a team, the Hoyas are getting about 35 percent of their leadoff batters on base.
The Runnin’ Bulldogs are 1-7 on the season. Georgetown and Gardner-Webb squared off four prior times with Gardner-Webb leading the series, 3-1. The two last faced for a doubleheader in March 2009 that the teams split in close fashion. Samantha Meenaghan leads the Runnin’ Bulldogs with a .500 batting average across the team’s eight games. She has more than twice as many hits as any other player on the team with 14, including the school’s only two extra base hits on the season.
Four different players have started in the circle for Gardner-Webb, but they are mostly anchored by Jessica Childers and Ashley Rhyne who have pitched a combined 34 innings. Childers is limiting her opponents to a .245 batting average with a 2.42 earned run average to go along with three complete games.
Georgetown has faced UNC-Wilmington three previous times and lead the series, 2-1. The Hoyas and the Seahawks last face in February 2012 with GU coming away with the 8-0 win. In the three games, the Blue & Gray have outscored the Seahawks, 10-4.
The Seahawks are 4-3 on the current season and have won their last three. Brittany Gamby and Nella Chamblee lead the team with their .467 (15 at bats) and .438 (16 at bats) batting averages. UNCW has four players with at least two extra base hits and eight with at least one.
Peyton Jordan and Casey Rowland have thrown a majority of the Seahawks’ innings with six starts between the two. Peyton has only allowed five earned runs over her 23 innings while Rowland has allowed just six across 21 innings. In her 72 total batters faced, Rowland currently limits her opponents to a .194 batting average.
The Boston University Terriers open its season 2014 schedule this Friday when they play at the Gamecock Invitational. When Georgetown and Boston square off on Sunday, they will be competing against one another for the first time in each of the programs’ history.
The Terriers play their inaugural season in the Patriot League this year and are tabbed to finish second in the preseason conference poll. Boston went 21-16-1 in 2013. BU will return nine letter winners including three Patriot League Preseason All-Conference selections. Jayme Mask batted .399 in the America East conference last season for the Terriers to go along with 37 stolen bases out of 40 attempts.
The Michigan State Spartans come into the Gamecock Invitational with a 2-5 record with two prior 2014 tournaments in DeLand, Fla. and Tempe, Ariz. While the Spartans have lost their last four games, they will face the Hoyas with a 3-0 series advantage. The last time the teams faced was in February 2011 in a Georgetown 3-1 loss.
Kassidy Kujawa has two homers in her six total hits and is one of two Spartans with two home runs on the season, the other being Sarah Gutnecht. As a team, the Spartans are batting .295 in seven games with 13 total extra base hits.
Michigan State throws three pitchers for its rotation. Across 22 innings, Kelly Smith has struck out 18 and given up 14 earned runs.