Nashville, Tenn. - Tennessee State softball will host five teams in the Tiger Classic Friday, March 15 through Sunday, March 17. Ohio State, Mercer, St. Bonaventure, Mississippi Valley State and Belmont will all participate in the three day event. TSU opens on Friday evening at 7:15 p.m. against Big Ten opponent, Ohio State.
The match-up between the Tigers and the Buckeyes is the second, and final, game of the first day. St. Bonaventure and Belmont will start the tournament at 5 p.m. Friday evening. Day two will feature six games, including TSU versus St. Bonaventure at 1:30 p.m. and, in the last game of the day, the Tigers against MVSU at 8:15 p.m. The final day of the classic boasts four games, with the Big Blue and Mercer closing out play at 3:45 p.m.
Get full schedule and updates on the Tiger Classic Central page at tsutigers.com.
Ohio State (11-8)
2011 Record: 14-37
Conference: Big Ten
2011 Finish: 3-17
Series Record: 0-1
Last Time Played: 2001, Lost 13-0
Last Win: NA
Shortstop Alicia Herron leads the Buckeyes at the plate hitting .420 (21-for-50) with three doubles, four triples and six home runs. The senior has reached 12 times by walk, scored 17 times and has driven in 21 runs. Four other Buckeye hitters are above .300, helping set the team average of .290. In the circle, Mikayla Endicott has posted team highs at 7-6, a 1.86 ERA, two shutouts, one save, 82.2 innings pitched and 86 strike outs. Melanie Nichols is 4-2 with a 4.47 ERA.
St. Bonaventure (8-8)
2011 Record: 13-20
2011 Finish: 8-12
Series Record: 1-0
Last Time Played: 2009, Won 2-1
Last Win: 2009, 2-1
Snider and Rohan pace the Bonnies offensively. Snider tops the stat page at .356 with two doubles, a triple, and two home runs. She is second on the team with eight runs scored and seven RBI. Rohan is 15-for-44 for a .341 average and leads the speed attack with nine of the Bonnies 15 total stolen bases. Phalon and Sansano share 97% of the pitching duties. Phalon is 4-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 51.2 innings of work. Sansano has hurled 46.2 innings and is 4-3 with a save and sports a 3.15 ERA. Both pychers have fanned 29 batters this season.
Mississippi Valley State (11-12)
2011 Record: 26-25
2011 Finish: 15-2
Series Record: 1-1
Last Time Played: 2004, Won 2-1
Last Win: 2004, 2-1
Junior pitcher Kimberly Spivey leads MVSU in the circle and is a two-time SWAC Pitcher of the Year. Last season, Spivey finished 14-16 with an ERA of 4.49. She had four shutouts with 175 strikeouts. The Devilettes' also rely on infielder Alexandria Robertson, Nicole Burr, Diana Parade and Ashley Hobbs to drive the offense.
2011 Record: 32-24
Conference: Atlantic Sun
2011 Finish: 10-10
Series Record: 1-4
Last Time Played: 2011, Lost 1-6
Last Win: 1995, 4-3
McKenzie Woody sets the table for Mercer with a .425 average, 14 stolen bases and crossing home plate 20 times. The Bears are averaging just over five runs a game and boasts a lineup with six players with either double-digit runs scored or double digit runs batted in. Jessica Holsinger tops the Mercer pitching staff at 6-2 with a 2.24 ERA. She is holding opponents to a .200 batting average, while striking out 54 in 65.2 innings.