University of Delaware Softball Team Opens 2012 Campaign This Weekend vs. Charlotte, Presbyterian
February 10, 2012
Photo Courtesy of Mark Campell
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. –The University of Delaware softball team opens its 2012 campaign this weekend when the Blue Hens face Charlotte and Presbyterian at the D.L. Phillips Complex in Charlotte.
Delaware opens its season on Saturday with an 11:30 a.m. contest against the host 49ers, before taking on the Blue Hose at 3:30 p.m. that afternoon. The Blue Hens wrap up play on Sunday with an 11 a.m. game against Charlotte.
Delaware, led by second-year head coach Jaime Wohlbach, is looking to build on last season’s 21-34 record when the Blue Hens finished fourth in the Colonial Athletic Association to qualify for the league tournament.
Junior centerfielder Lara Andrews (at right) will pace the Blue Hen lineup after batting .298 with 42 hits, 15 runs scored and 19 RBI a year ago. Sophomore second baseman Michelle McKinnon, a second team All-CAA and conference All-Rookie Team selection in 2011, also returns after leading the squad with a .322 batting average to go with 46 hits and 24 runs scored during her freshman campaign.
Junior catcher Gina Knutson, also a second team All-CAA pick a year ago, returns behind the plate for UD. Knutson batted .257 last season with 37 hits, while her nine home runs were second most in a UD single season and her 31 RBI are the fourth most in a season. Senior rightfielder Rachel Jones is expected to start again for Delaware after batting .234 with 30 hits and seven doubles a year ago.
Also returning for the Blue Hens are sophomore Becky Ellis, who started 37 games at shortstop in 2011, and Brittney Noons, who batted .188 while appearing in 44 games. Junior infielder Marisa Newman, a transfer from Iona, and outfielder Maggie Creciun, a transfer from Penn State, are also expected to challenge for starting roles for Delaware.
Sophomore Kathleen Conway, who went 6-10 with a 5.39 earned run average during her rookie season, returns to the circle for Delaware along with junior Hannah Rust, who compiled a 5.68 ERA last year during her first season in Newark. The Blue Hen pitching staff will get a boost from junior Chenxi Jiao, a transfer from Highland (Kan.) Community College where she was a second team Division II All-American after going 18-3 with 220 strikeouts. Freshman Brianna Jennings, a first team All-State selection last season at Wyalusing Valley (Pa.) High School, will also see plenty of time in the circle for the Blue Hens.
Following this weekend’s action, Delaware will play five games at the Florida Gulf Coast Tournament on Feb. 17-19 in Fort Myers, Fla. The Blue Hens face Temple on Mar. 14 in their home opener, before hosting the first annual Delaware Spring Invitational on Mar. 16-18. Delaware opens CAA action on Mar. 24-25 with a three-game series at Towson, before hosting George Mason the following weekend for three games on Mar. 31 and Apr. 1.Back To Softball Home Softball Story Archive