BALTIMORE, Md. – Coming off of two straight wins earlier in the week, the UMBC softball team (13-14) continues its season-long 10 game home stand by hosting Howard on Thursday afternoon at 4 p.m. at the UMBC Softball Stadium.
Junior Heather Brown (Pasadena, Md./Northeast) will get the ball for the Retrievers on Thursday against Howard. Brown (3-5) last started for UMBC back on March 15 against St. Francis (Pa.) when she gave up four runs on four hits in four innings of work. Since then, the right-hander has made three relief appearances, yielding only six runs over 8.1 innings. Brown has struck out 20 batters this year while issuing only 15 walks.
Scouting the Retrievers
UMBC is 13-14 over and 1-2 in America East play this season after winning a game each against Albany and George Washington earlier in the week. After dropping the first two games of a rain soaked three-game weekend series with America East rival Albany, the Retrievers rebounded on Monday and rallied to defeat the Great Danes, 4-3. Trailing by one going into the bottom of the seventh, UMBC tied the game on an RBI single to right-centerfield by sophomore Jessica Warner (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown). After a pop up and an intentional walk, freshmanCourtney Paone (Middletown, N.J./Middletown) drove a fly ball to right field, allowing senior Katrina Gaar(Newport Beach, Calif./Corona del Mar/Orange Coast CC) to race home with the walk-off win.
UMBC continued its momentum by pounding out nine hits and scoring seven runs in a win over George Washington on Tuesday. Sophomore Caitlin Chance (Easton, Md./Easton) went 2-for-3 with a homerun and three RBIs to pace the Retrievers who have won four of their last six contests.
Through 27 games in 2012, Warner leads the Black and Gold with a .361 average (30-for-83), 18 runs scored, 18 RBIs and eight homeruns. Freshman Taylor Hall (Cosby, Va./Cosby) has also impressed early this year with a .325 average (26-for-80) and three homeruns.
Senior Katie Ferguson (North East, Md./North East/Cecil CC) has been the most consistent pitcher for the Retrievers with an 8-6 record this year. She has won eight of her last ten starts with a 1.58 ERA in 71 innings of work during that stretch.
Scouting the Bison
Howard enters Thursday's contest at 4-19 after sweeping UMES in a doubleheader last Saturday. The Bison had lost 16 of 17 games prior to last weekend's sweep.
Freshman Dominique Lawrence leads Howard with a .361 batting average (30-for-83) this season. As of Monday, she sits tied for 238th among all NCAA Division I athletes.
Inside the Series
UMBC leads the all-time series with Howard, 15-2, and had won three straight in the series before the Bison knocked off the Retrievers, 11-6, in the second game of a doubleheader in 2010.
The Retrievers started the series winning the first 11 games between the two schools. Howard first defeated UMBC on Mar. 12, 2008, 2-1.