North Texas Takes On Defending C-USA Champion Western Kentucky
Friday-Saturday Weekend Series Begins With Doubleheader Friday
DENTON -- The North Texas softball team continues play on the road, returning to Conference USA play for a three-game weekend series at Western Kentucky beginning Friday. Friday's doubleheader begins at 3 p.m., and Saturday's series finale is set for a first pitch of noon.
The Mean Green (16-11, 1-5 C-USA) were swept at UTSA and dropped two of three to Marshall to open Conference USA play, before bouncing back with a 3-2 win at Stephen F. Austin on Tuesday. It was the start of a five-game road swing, and with the win, North Texas improved to 4-4 in road games this season, which includes a pair of wins over nationally-ranked Baylor.
"We have been on the road a lot," head coach Tracey Kee said. "We have won in some tough environments. This team is good being on the road. We did get swept two weeks ago, but that was a huge learning curve for a young team playing its first conference road series.
The Mean Green are hitting at .a .314 clip, the fourth-best mark in Conference USA, and also leads the league in home runs (29). They are led by junior shortstop Kelli Schkade, the league's fourth-best hitter by batting average (.411), and the league leader in home runs (10), total bases (79) and slugging percentage (.832).
Western Kentucky (10-13, 2-1 C-USA), the defending Conference USA regular season and tournament champion, took two of three from FIU to open Conference USA play. The Lady Toppers enter the weekend with the league's 10th-best batting average (.260), ninth-best earned run average (4.46) and ninth-best fielding percentage (.950).
Western Kentucky leads the all-time series 23-16-1 and has won five straight in the series, including a three-game sweep in Denton this past season. The two teams split a two-game series the last time they met in Bowling Green during the 2013 season.
"Western has a good winning tradition," Kee said. "They play very well at home, so we have to prepared to bring our best game to Bowling Green, and hopefully we will execute the plan that we have going in and put some wins in the win column."