ELON, N.C. – Entering the final week of its regular-season, the Elon University softball team hosts its final non-conference game versus longtime local rival North Carolina A&T on Tuesday, April 28. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.
Fans can follow the Phoenix via live stats by going to the Elon softball schedule page at elonphoenix.com. Twitter updates will also be provided the handle @elonscores or @ElonUSoftball. The game will also be streamed live online through the Phoenix All-Access channel with Bryan Anderson on the call.
The Phoenix and the Aggies have met on a yearly basis in 16 of the past 17 seasons in a series that dates back to 1991 in the fastpitch era. Elon holds a 36-9 advantage all-time over North Carolina A&T and has won five in row and 10 of the past 11. The maroon and gold earned a 3-0 shutout win at the Aggies in its most recent contest last season. Caitlin O’Shea allowed only two hits in the complete victory while Emily Roper had two RBI in that contest.
• Head coach Kathy Bocock currently sits at 95 wins in her career at Elon. Bocock is also the only coach in program history at the fastpitch level to have 20 or more wins in each of her first four seasons.
• With her 10th double of the year over the weekend at No. 22/23 James Madison, Hannah Olson joined Kara Shutt (12) as the first pair of Elon freshmen at the Division I level to have 10 or more doubles in a single-season.
• Elon’s 54 hit-by-pitches is the most ever for the program at the Division I level and leads the Colonial Athletic Association. Of the overall total, senior Aly Quintana and sophomore Emily Roper have drawn 32 of them as both are tied for the team and league-lead with 16.
• The Phoenix has posted a 16-2 record when it scores first and an 18-2 mark when it outhits its opponent. Elon also rarely gives up a lead after the fourth inning, posting a 20-1 record when it takes a lead past the fourth and a 17-0 mark when leading after the fifth and sixth frames.
• Elon’s 10 saves is also the most the program has had at the Division I program. Four different pitches have at least one save on the year with Chelsea White leading the team with four, the second-best single-season mark in school history. Caitlin O’Shea also still needs one more save to set the program’s all-time school-record in that category.
Scouting the Phoenix (26-20)
Elon has surpassed its win total from last year (24) and currently sits fourth in the CAA standings with an 8-10 mark while looking to position itself for the CAA Championships next week. JMU (17-0) and Hofstra (14-3) have clinched the top two seeds in the league playoffs with Elon battling with Towson (8-10) and College of Charleston (7-11) for the final two spots heading into the weekend.
The Phoenix enters its game against the Aggies with an 18-10 overall record in non-conference play and a 13-3 mark at the home confines of Hunt Softball Park. The Phoenix will look to snap its current five-game losing streak before heading into its CAA series finale this weekend versus UNCW.
Alaina Hall saw her personal-best 11-game hit streak snapped over the weekend at JMU, but she still leads the team with her .349 average. During her 11-game hitting streak, Hall batted .583 (21-for-36) with three doubles, a triple and four runs scored. She is one of two players on the team hitting better than .300 along with Olson (.336) and Shutt (.324).
Collectively, the Phoenix pitching staff has a 3.37 ERA, its lowest total since the 2011 season. Of the pitchers with at least 25 or more innings, all of them have an ERA lower than four. During non-conference play, the team has a 2.92 ERA overall with five pitchers having ERAs less than three.
Scouting North Carolina A&T (13-26)
Selected to finish fourth in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) southern division, the Aggies are led by second-year head coach Kenya Peters. N.C. A&T has a 13-26 record on the year after suffering a 3-0 setback to UNCW in its home finale last Wednesday, April 22.
The Aggies are batting .268 as a team with 278 hits, 33 doubles, 16 homers and 143 RBI. Raven Gray leads the team with a .325 average and is one of three players hitting north of .300. She also has a team-best five triples on the year.
Maiven McKnight (7-11) and Janika May (6-15) handle all of the workload for the Aggies in the circle. McKnight leads the team with a 4.00 ERA in her 130.2 innings while May paces the squad in strikeouts with 59. As a team, North Carolina A&T has a cumulative ERA of 5.10.
Elon closes out its regular-season with a three-game CAA series versus UNCW beginning with a doubleheader on Friday, May 1, at 5 p.m. The series concludes on Saturday at 1 p.m., as the Phoenix will honor its six-person senior class of Quintana, White, O’Shea, Eve Clausen, Grace Eng and Sarah Little.