Softball opens conference play at Nicholls

GO CARDINALS Casey Cromwell has started all 19 games for Lamar this season.
GO CARDINALS
Casey Cromwell has started all 19 games for Lamar this season.
GO CARDINALS

March 8, 2013

Lamar's Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

THIBODAUX, La. - The Lamar University softball team opens Southland Conference play with a three-game series at Nicholls this weekend.

The Lady Cardinals (8-11 overall) will face the Colonels (7-11) in a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday and in a single game at 1 p.m. Sunday.

When I was first hired (Aug. 1, 2011), that first conference game seemed so far away," said Lamar coach Holly Bruder, who is overseeing Lamar's first season of softball since dropping the program after the 1987 season. "Now, all of a sudden, it's right on top of us."

Lamar's last regular-season Southland Conference game was a 4-1 loss to Southwestern Louisiana, now Louisiana-Lafayette, in the 1987 season.

The Lady Cardinals carry some momentum from Tuesday's doubleheader sweep of Prairie View A&M into this weekend. Tina Schulz threw a one-hitter in the 2-0 win in the opener before the offense erupted for 24 runs, an all-time program record dating back to the five seasons (1983-87) that Lamar had softball.

"We've made a lot of progress over the past 3½ weeks," Bruder said. "Our pitching has gotten so much better and our fielding has come around. The thing I worry most about is our hitting."

The Lady Cardinals, thanks to the 17hit outburst in just four innings in the romp over Prairie View, are hitting .252 as a team. Candyce Carter, who is batting .380 with three home runs and 10 RBIs, is the only Lamar regular above the .300 mark. Julianne Viator is next at .295.

Right-hander Tina Schulz (4-2, 3.55) and lefty Shannon Millman (3-5, 1 save, 3.95) are the scheduled starters for Saturday. Bruder will likely come back with one of those two on Sunday.

Nicholls, which comes off an 8-0 loss at South Alabama on Wednesday, is led offensively by Brittany Marcet (.306, 1 HR, 10 RBIs). Ashton Bennett 5-4, 2.02) and Hannah Haydel (2-4, 3.87) are the likely starters for the Colonels.

Following this weekend's series, Lamar returns home to host Bucknell in a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Tuesday at Ford Park.

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