ELON, N.C. – The Elon softball team travels to Mt. Pleasant, S.C., this weekend for a three-game series with College of Charleston. The Phoenix (9-9, 0-3 Southern Conference) and the Cougars (11-9, 3-0 SoCon) square off in a doubleheader on Saturday, March 16, starting at 1 p.m. before concluding the series on Sunday, March 17, at the Patriots Point Athletics Complex.
Fans can follow the action of the series via live stats by going to the Elon softball schedule page at elonphoenix.com. Twitter updates will also be provided at @ElonScores.
Entering this weekend’s matchup, Elon and College of Charleston have met 33 times in a series that dates back to 1998 in the fast-pitch era. The Cougars hold a 19-14 edge over the Phoenix all-time and have won the past three meetings.
The two programs last met in the 2012 SoCon Tournament with CofC eliminating Elon, 4-2. Elon won the series in its last visit to College of Charleston in 2011.
Last Time Out
Elon is coming off a tough, competitive series in its SoCon opener versus Georgia Southern last weekend, March 9-10, at Hunt Softball Park. The Phoenix and Eagles went 11 innings in the first game of a doubleheader last Saturday, but Elon fell in an 8-5 setback. In game two, the maroon and gold rallied late, but was unable to overtake the Eagles in a 6-4 defeat. Georgia Southern would complete the sweep with a 5-2 win in the series finale on Sunday.
Kayla Caruso pitched 10.1 innings in game one versus the Eagles and set a new career-high with six strikeouts. Tomeka Watson hit her tenth home run of the season in the first game, setting a new single-season high for the senior outfielder and two shy of tying the all-time program record in a single year.
Scouting the Phoenix
Elon fell to 9-9 overall on the season and 0-3 in SoCon play after last weekend’s series against league preseason favorite Georgia Southern. The Phoenix still lead the SoCon in home runs (22), slugging percentage (.492), and on-base percentage (.388) while ranking second in RBI (84) and batting average (.302).
Watson extended her current hitting streak to 15 games and is leading the conference with a .466 batting average. She also leads the SoCon in home runs and runs scored with 23 while she and teammate Johanna Spencer are tied for the league lead in RBI (20).
Along with the career home run record, Watson also became the program’s all-time leader in runs scored and is nine hits shy of tying the all-time career mark with Dani Concepcion (2002-05). The Jackson, Ga., native has 27 hits on the year and has 220 in her career for the Phoenix.
On Monday, the NCAA released its first Division I statistics rankings for the 2013 season. Watson currently ranks third in the nation in home runs per game, fourth in total homers and fifth in slugging percentage.
In the circle, Caruso leads the staff in wins (four) and innings pitched (54.1). Chelsea White paces the pitching unit with a 2.78 ERA in her 22.2 innings of work.
Scouting College of Charleston
The Cougars swept Furman in its SoCon opening series last weekend, but dropped both games in a doubleheader to Mississippi State on Thursday, March 14. CofC was outscored 20-1 in both contests versus the Bulldogs.
At the plate, the Cougars are batting .232 with nine home runs and 59 RBI. Junior Kelsey Hodgson paces CofC’s offensive attack with four homers and 16 RBI while ranking second on the squad with a .321 batting average. Freshman Chandler Frisbie leads the team with a .333 batting average.
Hope Klicker and Stephanie Saylors have split the starts in the circle for the Cougars this season. Kilicker leads the staff with a 7-4 record and a 3.20 ERA. Saylors has posted a 4-4 record with an ERA of 5.73.
Elon continues its road trip next week with a trip to Durham, N.C., for a single game matchup with North Carolina Central next Wednesday, March 20. The first pitch is slated for 4 p.m.