BALTIMORE – UMBC softball closes out the regular-season with five games in four days at University Field on the campus of Stony Brook, as the Dawgs battle for a playoff spot. The Retrievers will take on Maine in a rescheduled doubleheader on Wednesday, April 29, with an 11 a.m. first pitch. The Dawgs will close out the year with a three-game series against Stony Brook, beginning with a 1 p.m. doubleheader on Friday, May 1.
Heading into the final week of the regular season, all four playoff spots are up for grabs. Stony Brook enters the week in first with a 9-2 record, followed by Albany (7-4), Maine (7-4), Binghamton (8-5) and UMBC (7-5). The highest seed at the end of the regular-season hosts the America East Championships, which are set for May 7-9.
SCOUTING THE RETRIEVERS (21-23, 7-5 AE):
UMBC has dropped five straight, including three to Binghamton over the weekend. The Retrievers stranded 28 runners in the three-game series to the Bearcats.
The Retrievers rank first in the conference in both runs scored (214) and hits (341). Freshman Tori Alexander leads the team in batting average (.401) and ranks first in the conference in runs scored (40) and hits (55). The outfielder has put forth an impressive rookie campaign, ranking fourth in the conference in batting average and third in stolen bases (20). Senior Taylor Hall has added another remarkable campaign, climbing up the Retrievers' record books, while also ranking third in the league in runs batted in (37), fifth in slugging percentage (.655) and batting a career-best .400, sixth in the league.
Sophomore Jessica Holte leads the conference in innings pitched (142.1) and is tied for first in wins on the year (13). She also ranks second in strikeouts (99) and is fourth in in ERA (2.51). Freshman Kim Puccio also ranks in the top-10 in the league in earned run average (3.44) and strikeouts (49).
SCOUTING THE BLACK BEARS (19-17, 8-4 AE):
Maine is coming off a three-game sweep of Hartford last weekend. Seniors Jessica Burk and Alexis Bogdanovich each picked up conference honors on the week, being named the America East Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, respectively.
Bogdanovich leads the league with a 1.68 ERA and is holding opponents to a conference-low .190 batting average. The veteran also leads the conference in strikeouts (153) and wins (13).
Offensively, EmJ Fogel is leading the Black Bears with a .327 batting average and 12 extra-base hits. The senior has driven in a team-best 25 runs and is posting a .385 on-base percentage. Rookie Erika Leonard ranks second on the team in batting average (.309) and ranks first with 16 stolen bases.
SCOUTING THE SEAWOLVES (23-14, 9-2 AE)
Stony Brook has won four of its last five games entering into the week. The Seawolves travel to Albany for a midweek doubleheader on Tuesday, April 28 with playoff implications on the line.
Senior Bria Green pilots the Seawolves' offense, leading the league in batting average (.432), slugging percentage (.958) and runs batted in (45). Green and senior Shayla Giosia have combined for 27 homers on the season and 74 runs batted in.
Stony Brook's pitching staff ranks second in the conference in earned run average (3.03) and third in opposing batting average (.256).