Preview: Softball has tough test in Long Beach

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Preview: Softball has tough test in Long Beach

RMU split their two games Saturday defeating Umass Lowell and then dropping to Chattanooga.

RMU split their two games Saturday defeating Umass Lowell and then dropping to Chattanooga.

RMU split their two games Saturday defeating Umass Lowell and then dropping to Chattanooga.

RMU split their two games Saturday defeating Umass Lowell and then dropping to Chattanooga.

Delenn Poe, Softball Beat Writer

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LONG BEACH, Ca. — The Robert Morris Colonials’ softball team (3-10) heads to the Louisville Slugger Invitational in Long Beach, California. The team will play one game on March 6, two games on March 7, two games on March 8, and they will play their last game on the March 9.

UCLA

The team is ranked No. 2 in the country and last season they made it all the way to the Women’s College World Series. This season is no different for them as they have had a dominant start to their season with a record of 17-1. They defeated some of the biggest names in college softball who normally go far in the NCAA tournament each year. The team’s pitching staff has a total earned run average 1.10 and they have only allowed six home runs. On the offensive side of their game, they have a team slugging percentage of .533 and their batting average is .347.

Ohio University

They have had a good start to the season with a record of 11-7 and they had a four-game winning streak before they lost on March 3. Last season, the team was the MAC Regular Season and Tournament Champions and they were picked third in their conference preseason poll.

San Diego State

This season, they have already faced Brigham Young University where they beat them in true comeback fashion during the last inning. Last season, the team committed 58 errors and this season they have already committed 22 errors. In their last tournament, two of their games got canceled or postponed, but they ended up winning two out of the three games they got to play.

Long Beach State

Last season, the team made into the NCAA Regionals, but the last time they won their conference title was in 2014. The team has some impactful players that returned this season such as Taylor Rowland who was awarded second team All-American, Big West Freshman of the Year Naomi Hernandez and Nichole Fry who earned first team All-Big West honors. This season the team is batting an average of .290 and their pitching staff has collectively struck out 70 batters.

Boston University

The team ended their last tournament with losses in their last two games to No. 14 Arkansas (18-3). During their second tournament in South Carolina, they went undefeated and defeated two of the teams by seven runs. Half of their team has an on-base percentage above .800. The team has been walked 29 times and have scored 64 runs so far this season.

Brigham Young University

The team is young as seven sophomores and five freshmen are on the team. They have made an appearance in the NCAA tournament in 14 straight seasons. Their pitching staff has only allowed 10 home runs and has struck out 60 of their faced batters. They have a team batting average of .259 and an on-base percentage of .351.

Robert Morris University

The Colonials have had a rough start to the season with a record of 3-10 and have not been successful in the past couple seasons. They are more mature and have a more balanced range of experience. The team only lost four seniors from last season and they gained seven new players for the 2019 season. They are going through lots of changes from last season to this season from their head coach resigning to going through the first part of the season without a set head coach.

Prediction

I think the Colonials will struggle in this tournament because they are playing against very tough competition, and the team has not been successful lately. In the final tournament of the preseason, the Colonials are heading to is the UMBC Retriever Classic in Catonsville, Maryland from March 22-24.

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