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#NCAASoftball Seattle Regional Preview

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#3 Washington hosts Mississippi State, Seattle U and Fordham

Edward Strong

#3 Washington hosts Mississippi State, Seattle U and Fordham for the NCAA Softball Seattle Regional starting Friday at 4:30 p.m. UW is hosting for the fourth year in a row, while SU is making their first-ever DI postseason appearance.

The full bracket is available here.

Schedule

  • Fri, 4:30: Game 1 — Seattle U (39-15, 15-3 WAC) vs Mississippi State (33-21, 9-15 SEC)
  • Fri, 7:00: Game 2 — Fordham (29-24, 16-6 A-10) vs #3 Washington (45-7, 20-4 Pac-12)
  • Sat, 3:00: Game 3 — Winner G1 vs Winner G2
  • Sat, 5:30: Game 4 — Loser G1 vs Loser G2 (elimination)
  • Sat, 8:00: Game 5 — Loser G3 vs Winner G4 (elimination)
  • Sun, 6:00: Game 6 — Winner G3 vs Winner G5 (potential elimination)
  • Sun, 8:30: Game 7, if necessary — rematch of G6 (only played if G5 Winner also wins G6)

All games in will be available on ESPN3 (espn.com/watch or the ESPN app) with Alex Perlman on play-by-play and Kenzie Fowler as the analyst. Friday's games will be available online only; Saturday and Sunday's games may also be aired on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, or SEC Network (if Mississippi State is involved), which will be announced as the tournament progresses.

The winner of the Seattle Regional will play the winner of the Lexington Regional in the Super Regional next weekend. #14 Kentucky hosts Virginia Tech, Illinois and Toledo. As a top-8 seed, Washington would host the Super Regional round if they make it, regardless of opponent, while Kentucky would host any team except UW.

Players to Watch

  • The catchers
    All four primary starting catchers lead their respective team in home runs, combining for a total of 71 which dwarfs all other regionals. Mississippi State's Mia Davidson is tied for #1 in the country with 25 bombs. Morganne Flores has 18, more than three times any other Husky. Molly Roark leads Fordham with 16, while Seattle U's Bailey Thompson has 12.
  • MSU power show
    Davidson isn’t the only source of power for the Bulldogs. DP Ulufa “Fa” Leilua is a close second with 22, making Mississippi State one of just two teams with two players to hit 20+ homers (Arizona). 2019 MSU is the first SEC team to ever have two players hit 22 or more home runs in a single season. Leilua has seen the Huskies more than the vast majority of her teammates; she played in five games against UW while at Arizona State in 2016-17, but has not had much success, going 2-for-14 with no extra-base hits. Davidson is another story: in her only game against the Huskies earlier this season, she homered three times off Gabbie Plain — no other player has ever homered twice off Plain in a game, nor has any team homered three times against the Aussie.
  • Pitchers who rake
    Expect to see Fordham P/OF Madie Auginbaugh stay in the circle all weekend, as she pitched four straight complete games in the A-10 tourney. She also leads the Rams with a .364 average and is currently on a seven-game hitting streak, going 14-for-21 (.667) in that stretch. Seattle U ace Carley Nance hit back-to-back walk-off hits at the WAC tourney, including a grand slam to stun defending champ New Mexico State 8-7 in the semifinals.

Series history:

  • Washington-Mississippi State: UW leads 5-1. Huskies beat State 7-5 earlier this season on Feb. 14 in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. The Bulldogs' only win was 3-0 on March 3, 2006 in Waco, Texas. UW won the first meeting between the teams, 4-1 in the 2000 Seattle Regional.
  • Washington-Seattle: UW leads 15-0, all coming since 2009. UW took this year's matchup 1-0 on March 10. Huskies were almost never challenged in the first 12 meetings, winning by an average score of almost 10-1 and never by fewer than four runs. Redhawks have been far more competitive in the three meetings since, falling by scores of 3-1, 3-1 and 1-0.
  • Washington-Fordham: UW leads 1-0. Huskies won the only meeting 2-0 on Feb. 24, 2011 in Cathedral City, Calif.
  • Mississippi State-Seattle U: never played. Friday's opening game will be the first all-time meeting.
  • Mississippi State-Fordham: MSU leads 2-1. Fordham's only win in the series was a big one, winning 9-3 in an elimination game at the Salt Lake City Regional on May 19, 2017.
  • Seattle U-Fordham: SU leads 1-0. Only meeting was this season, as the Redhawks won 11-3 on Feb. 15 in Las Vegas, Nev.