COLUMBUS, Miss. (WTVA/MUW Athletics) – The Owls softball season will continue as the team was selected to compete in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Small College World Series in DuBois, Penn. The W worked hard during this comeback year to end the regular season 19-17, ranking 7th nationally among USCAA institutions.
"The girls worked really hard and I am beyond excited," said Head Softball Coach Tat Matthews. "Their hard work and perseverance and dedication to this sport has paid off and we get to make it as a first year program."
In 36 games, the Owls have maintained a .306 batting average, a .403 on base percentage, and a .385 slugging percentage with 212 runs.
Owls Female Athlete of the Year Katlyn Duke leads her team with 32 RBIs. At the plate, the junior from Philadelphia, Miss. has maintained a .321 batting average, a .358 on base percentage, and a .454 slugging percentage for 112 at-bats, 20 runs, and 36 hits (five doubles, four triples, and one homerun). On the field, Duke holds a .932 fielding percentage with 46 putouts and 23 assists.
Hattiesburg, Miss. native Kristen Martin leads the Owls in several categories with a .380 batting average, a .504 on base percentage, and a .489 slugging percentage. In 34 games, the junior utility player has racked up 92 at-bats, 28 runs, and 35 hits (eight doubles and one triple) for 23 RBI.
On the mound, starting pitching duties are split between Madison Scoggin and Cara Hopper. The Owls first game starter Scoggin has made 22 appearances with 17 starts for a 7-8 record with one save. With 92.1 inning pitched for nine complete games, the Bay Springs, Miss. native holds a 2.58 ERA with 43 strikeouts.
Hopper, the Owls only senior, usually takes over second game duties with 17 appearances, 13 starts, and a 6-6 record with one save. The Steens, Miss. native has pitched 70.0 innings for four complete games for a 3.70 ERA and 47 strikeouts.
In the first round of the tournament, the Owls softball team will take on Penn State University – Beaver on Monday, May 14. The first pitch is scheduled for 10 a.m. at Rose and Dennis Heindl Memorial Field in DuBois, Penn.