TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – This weekend, Florida State softball will host its final regular season tournament of 2016 with the Unconquered Invitational on February 26-28. The No. 13 Seminoles (8-3) will welcome Bradley (3-7), Hofstra (6-4) and UAB (3-8) for the three-day tournament on JoAnne Graf Field.
The weekend will consist of a round-robin on Friday and Saturday morning, with each team playing the others once, with the results being used to place the four teams into a bracketed playoff for Saturday night with consolation and championship games on Sunday morning. The Seminoles’ group stage matches will be against Hofstra (5:30 p.m. – Feb. 26), Bradley (7:30 p.m. – Feb. 26) and UAB (2:30 p.m. – Feb. 27).
“We’re excited for another weekend of competition as we continue to gain experience and see what this team is all about,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “Often these early season tournaments have predetermined games and opponents, but this will be similar to a regional where previous results determine the matchups moving forward and we’ll have an overall champion when the weekend is done.”
The Seminoles enter the weekend on a three-game winning streak, including a pair of wins over No. 20 Minnesota last weekend and a 10-1 victory over Florida A&M on February 24. Alex Kossoff leads the team with a .393 batting average and is tied for third on the team with eight RBI. Alex Powers and Zoe Casas each have a team-high 10 runs batted in the season, while Morgan Klaevemann and Cali Harrod have totaled nine walks apiece through the first 11 games of the season.
In the circle, Jessica Burroughs leads the team with a 5-2 record and a 2.41 ERA. Her five wins leads the ACC and she also has 47 strikeouts in 32.0 innings to rank second in the conference. Meghan King is 3-1 with a 2.62 ERA in her freshman campaign, totaling 20 strikeouts in 29.1 innings with only seven walks allowed.
Bradley is led offensively by Kelly Kapp who is hitting an impressive .611 (22-for-36) this season at the top of the Bradley order. Kapp ranks No. 13 in the NCAA in batting and her 22 hits are the third-most in the nation. The other main offensive threat for the Braves is Kendall Duffy who has a .421 batting average with seven extra-base hits and 10 RBIs this season. Pitching for Bradley is handled primarily by Jaelen Hull who has pitched 26.2 innings this season with a 0-3 record and 4.20 ERA.
Hofstra is 6-4 on the young season and is led by Kim Smith at the plate who has a team-high 12 hits and nine RBIs. Jessica Peslak is counted on for the majority of the pitching duties for the Pride and is 3-3 with a 4.50 ERA and a team-high 16 strikeouts.
UAB enters the weekend with a 3-8 record, but they have faced difficult opposition this season, having already faced six ranked teams in No. 25 South Alabama, No. 11 Louisiana, No. 5 Alabama, No. 1 Florida, No. 16 Missouri and No. 10 Georgia. Jojo Fallen leads the Blazers with a .433 batting average and six runs scored. UAB has given the most pitching starts to Madison Hir and Megan Smith at four apiece, but Cara Goodwin has seen the most action with two starts and eight relief appearances and holds a 1-0 record with a 5.75 ERA on the season.
The Unconquered Invitational will consist of four games on each day for Friday and Saturday starting at 12:00 p.m. with a pair of games on Sunday starting at 10:00 a.m. The bracketed portion of the Invitational will begin on Saturday afternoon with the No. 1 seed facing the No. 4 seed at 5:00 p.m., followed by the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds at 7:30 p.m. The losers of the Saturday afternoon games will play in the Consolation Game at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday, while the winners will face off in the Championship Game on Sunday at 12:30 p.m.
Admission is free for all regular season games at JoAnne Graf Field. A free live radio broadcast for all games involving Florida State, as well as live stats, will be available on Seminoles.com throughout the weekend.
Follow Florida State softball on Twitter (@FSU_Softball) and Instagram (fsusoftball), and like our Facebook page (Facebook.com/FSUsoftball) to keep up to date with everything about Seminole softball.