March 13, 2013
HOME SWEET HOME
After competing in the fist 25 games of the season on the road, the Hoosiers will play in their highly anticipated home opener at the brand new Andy Mohr Field this weekend when IU welcomes Toledo in the first game of the 2013 Hoosier Classic. Friday's contest will represent the first of 17 home games for Indiana this season, while IU's 6:15 p.m. EST matchup with Central Michigan later that evening will be the first home contest for the Hoosiers to be played under the lights.
A LOOK AT THE COMPETITION
The 13-game 2013 Hoosier Classic will feature squads from Central Michigan, Illinois-Chicago, Michigan State, Toledo and Wright State in a round robin tournament. Indiana will play CMU, UIC, Toledo and Wright State this weekend. In Friday's opener, IU will face Toledo (5-12) for just the fourth time in program history and the first since the 1997 season. The Hoosiers own a 3-0 record against the Rockets and won their previous meeting by a score of 3-2. Indiana and Central Michigan (10-8) will face off for the 16th time on Friday and IU will look to improve upon its 10-5 mark against the Chippewas. On Saturday, Indiana will play UIC (3-15) for the 18th time (IU leads series, 11-6) after defeating the Flames three times in 2012, and the Hoosiers will close the weekend in their 10th meeting with Wright State (2-13). Indiana also leads that all-time series 7-2 and won in its last meeting with the Raiders, 6-3, in 2011.
LAST TIME OUT
The Hoosiers played five games in three days at the Tiger Classic hosted by Tennessee State in Nashville, Tenn. last weekend, where they went 2-3 to move their overall record to 12-13 on the year. In the weekend opener, Indiana dropped a 5-0 decision to Nebraska-Omaha but would bounce back for a convincing 8-0 win over Alabama State. On Saturday, March 9, the Hoosiers split with a loss to Mississippi Valley State, 5-2, and defeated host Tennessee State in six innings, 8-0. On Sunday, IU dropped a heartbreaker to Saint Louis, 4-3. With Indiana holding a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the seventh, the Billikins hit a walk-off three-run shot to end the game.
Shannon Cawley and Brianna Meyer were named to the 2013 All-Tiger Classic Tournament Team after posting impressive numbers on the weekend. Meyer led all IU batters with a .500 (6-for-12) average on the weekend, connecting on a hit in all five games to extend her hit-streak to 10 contests. The lefty posted an astonishing .684 on-base percentage with two doubles, an RBI and five runs scored. She did not strike out in a single at bat and coaxed seven walks from opposing pitchers. Cawley strung together three multiple-hit efforts this weekend, posting an impressive .471 (8-for-17) average at the Tiger Classic. She proved to be a difficult out on the weekend, posting an on-base percentage of .500 and struck out just twice. The sophomore drove in a team best six RBI with two doubles and a homerun (.765 slugging%) and scored five times for the Hoosiers. On the base paths, Cawley was a perfect two-for-two in stolen bases. Her weekend performance helped improve her overall batting average from a .232 to a .288 clip.
GARDNER GETS 100
Head Coach Michelle Gardner earned her 100th victory in just her fifth season at the helm of the Indiana softball program on March 8 when the Hoosiers' posted an 8-0, five-inning win over Alabama State at the Tiger Classic. Coach Gardner is just one of three IU head coaches to earn at least 100 wins in program history, as Gayle Blevins posted a 299-144-2 record in her seven-year stint and Diane Stephenson went 402-402-4 through 15 seasons.