After a successful regular season and a post-season sweep to its first ever Northeast Conference Championship, the Central Connecticut softball team will face Louisiana State University tonight, Friday, May 17, at Tiger Park in Baton Rouge, LA at 7 p.m. (6 p.m. CDT).
Watch the game live via the LSUsports.net GeauxZone.
The Blue Devils arrived in Baton Rouge after a long journey on Tuesday and hit the ground running, taking in some sites and practicing hard to get ready for their first NCAA Regional appearance in the 27 year division I history of the program.
WATCH the day three video log as the Blue Devils work one last practice before today's match-up.
Central has never faced LSU, though Head Coach Jeff Franquet coached Tiger head coach, Beth Torina, on the Yuengling Patriot A's, leading the team to the ASA National Championship in the early 2000s. Franquet also coached LSU Assistant Coach Sharonda McDonald on the Philadelphia Force in the NFP Pro League.
The Blue Devils (35-13, 16-4 NEC) head into today's game riding a seven game win streak and have emerged victorious in 27 of their last 31 games. LSU (40-14, 15-8 SEC), is on a three loss streak, their most recent against No. 23 Georgia.
CCSU boasts a team batting average of .321, compared to .288 for LSU. In the circle, sophomore Laura Messina (26-9) stacks up among the Tiger pitchers as she posts a 1.72 ERA compared to 2.35 for Connecticut native Rachele Fico (24-11), and 1.73 for LSU's Meghan Patterson (6-2).
The Blue Devils have blasted 51 home runs this season, 10 of which were off the bats of NEC Player of the Year Kat Malcolm and NEC First-Teamer Nicole Springer. Nine of those homers came from NEC First-Teamer Arielle Bruno and CCSU career home run record holder, Kelsey Barlow. The tigers have hit 40 home runs this season. Leading LSU on the home run front by far is Bianka Bell, who has smacked 12.
To view a complete breakdown of the CCSU season stats, view the CCSU NCAA Tournament notes.
Both teams look to have impressive offensive capabilities and sure handed pitchers in the eight-foot circle. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. (6 p.m. CDT) live on GeauxZone. Fans can also follow the live action via LIVE STATS and on Twitter @CCSUBlueDevils.