CLEARWATER, Fla.—The Barry softball team hits the road this weekend as the 2013 edition of their “Long, Strange Trip” begins at the Eckerd College Invitational at the Eddie C. Moore Softball Complex in Clearwater, Fla., Feb. 8-10.
The Bucs (2-0), who start the season with 17 straight games away from home, will face a staunch task at the Invite. The five opponents combined in 2012 for a 175-100 record and three of them (Flagler, Tampa and Columbus State) reached the NCAA Division II Regionals. Flagler went on to the play in the D-II Softball World Series, finishing in seventh place. They open with Flagler (39-20) of the Peachbelt Conference on Feb. 8. On Saturday, they face two more PBC foes Georgia College (25-24) and Columbus State (40-20). They close out the tournament on Sunday against defending Sunshine State Conference champs Tampa (37-8) and Colorado Christian (34-29) of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
So far this spring, the Bucs have faced only NAIA Northwood, playing four games against the Seahawks, two exhibition contests on Jan. 31 and two regular season games on Feb. 2. Barry won all four games by a combined score of 28-1 and racked up some impressive numbers while doing so.
The Bucs hit .395, rapping out 45 hits in the four games. Of the hits, 14 went for extra bases, including a school-record seven doubles in game one on Saturday. The Bucs drew 13 walks and struck out just 10 times. Additionally, they stole nine bases in 10 attempts and committed just one error in four games. Pitching-wise, they allowed just the one run and held the Seahawks to 11 hits for a .131 average. They walked eight and struck out 31 in 26.0 innings.
Individually, Sarah Broeseker and Julie Brito have paced the offense. Each hit .500 and accounted for seven runs. Broeseker scored four times and drove in three, while Brito led the team with five RBI and scored twice. Natalia Ojeda tied with Broeseker with four runs and drove in three in just three games. Ashley Fernendez and Kelly Martinez each hit a homer, while Alexis Kent and Kristina Pazienza had two doubles each.
The pitching staff was equally balanced. All four hurlers earned wins, with Britney Pugh and Alexis Yohe picking up saves in addition. Pugh, Yohe and Camille Czarnecki each tossed seven innings in two appearances, while Taylor Sabol totaled five. Sabol led the staff with a .118 opponent’s batting average, while Czarnecki topped the staff with 10 strikeouts.
Live coverage of the games will be limited to livestats at http://live-stats.barry.edu/softball/xlive.htm.