North Texas Plays Host To Mean Green Spring Fling
Mean Green To Play Five Games In Three Days Against UT Martin, Nicholls State And Houston Baptist
DENTON — North Texas wraps up its first homestand of the season with the Mean Green Spring Fling that starts Friday at Lovelace Stadium. During the three-day tournament, the Mean Green (8-6) will play host to Houston Baptist, Nicholls State and UT Martin.
North Texas will open tournament play on Friday against UT Martin at 3:30 p.m. On Saturday, they will play Nicholls State at 2:30 p.m., followed by UT Martin at 4:30 p.m. And they will conclude the weekend on Sunday against Nicholls State at 11 a.m., followed by Houston Baptist at 1 p.m.
The Mean Green played its first home games of the 2016 season at the North Texas Invitational this past weekend, posting a 2-2 record with a split against both Creighton and Sam Houston State during the two-day tournament.
“We spent the last three days working to prepare our own game, getting our own game back up and running, where our pitching, offense and defense are firing on all cylinders,” head coach Tracey Kee said. “We spent a lot of time on ourselves and working to improve ourselves based on things that we didn’t do well last weekend.”
North Texas looks to recapture much of the same momentum that carried them to a 6-4 start and receiving votes in a national poll for the the first time in school history, highlighted by a pair of wins over nationally-ranked Baylor and the Getterman Classic tournament title.
Junior shortstop Kelli Schkade continues to be a story at the plate, recording a hit in each of the first 14 games this season and setting the school record for the longest hit streak. During the 14-game stretch, she has seven multi-hit games and also leads the team in batting average (.431), runs scored (14), doubles (5), home runs (6), RBI (16) and slugging percentage (.922).
In the opposing dugout, Houston Baptist (8-3), Nicholls State (10-7) and UT Martin (10-4) all enter the weekend with winning records and will provide a final nonconference weekend test, before North Texas opens Conference USA play next weekend at UTSA.
“It’s important that we play well and we settle into our own abilities and that we bring energy and compete every single game,” Kee said. “With five games in three days, that’s going to require a lot of mental work from our kids, and that’s something that they need to be prepared for.”