ELON, N.C. – Elon University head softball coach Kathy Bocock announced the Phoenix’s 2013 schedule on Friday morning, Jan. 4. Elon will open the season on the road at the Red and Black Showcase Tournament hosted by the University of Georgia on Feb. 8-9 before returning home on Feb. 19 for the grand opening of Hunt Softball Park when the Phoenix hosts Campbell.
“I’m excited about our schedule and the opportunity play at Hunt Softball Park, which is one of the most amazing facilities in the country,” said Bocock, who begins her second season at the helm of the Elon softball program. “We have some big games in the beginning of the season before we get into conference play. I’m excited about playing a challenging schedule prior to Southern Conference play that allows us to be battle-tested heading into league games.”
Elon will open its 2013 campaign in Athens, Ga., in the Red and Black Showcase on Feb. 8 against Ohio State before taking on host Georgia, a 2012 NCAA Regional team. A day later, Elon will face the Bulldogs again before closing the tournament with Winthrop.
After playing at East Field for a number of years, the Phoenix will be moving into a new home this spring at Hunt Softball Park, named in honor of a lead gift from Elon trustee Vicky Hunt and her husband, Sam. Elon will play Campbell at 4 p.m. in its first game at the new facility on Feb. 19.
“We all know how exciting opening the new stadium is and the pride that it will bring to the team, community and Elon itself,” said Bocock. “There will be a lot of emotions flying on that first day in the new stadium. That’s our home field so you want to always make sure that you take care of business at home. Campbell is a great team and it will be great competition for us that day.”
The maroon and gold will then host the Phoenix Clash Tournament Feb. 22-24. Hampton, St. Peter’s and Temple will participate in the tournament with the Phoenix.
Elon will play two of three games at home versus East Carolina (Feb. 27) and Virginia Tech (Feb. 28) prior to opening SoCon play when it hosts Georgia Southern in a three-game series on March 9-10. In between, the Phoenix also takes on the Charlotte 49ers in a non-conference road doubleheader on March 6.
The following weekend, Elon heads to Mt. Pleasant, S.C., to take on College of Charleston at Patriots Point, March 16-17. Three days later, the team wraps up a three-game road swing in Durham, N.C., when it takes on North Carolina Central on March 20.
Around spring break, the team will travel to Boca Raton, Fla., to play in the FAU Parents Weekend Tournament on March 23-24 hosted by Florida Atlantic. The Phoenix will play Dartmouth in its opening game on March 23 beginning at 9 a.m. The Phoenix also faces Bethune-Cookman in the tournament. Before leaving the Sunshine State, Elon faces Jacksonville on March 26.
The Phoenix closes out the month of March at Hunt Softball Park when it welcomes local rival UNCG to campus on March 29-30.
Elon will have the remaining bulk of its SoCon schedule in the month of April with 12 league games, including a home series with Western Carolina (April 13-14). The Phoenix also has non-conference games at home against Longwood (April 2), N.C. Central (April 27) and NC State (April 28). The Phoenix heads down the road to Chapel Hill, N.C., on April 10 to face the UNC Tar Heels.
In May, the Phoenix will close out its remaining regular-season slate at home starting with a doubleheader versus North Carolina A&T on May 1 before playing a three-game series versus Chattanooga on May 4-5.
The 2013 SoCon Tournament will begin on May 8-11 hosted by UNCG in Greensboro, N.C.