Lyons return to NCAA's for first time since 2004
NORTON, Mass. – The Wheaton College softball team will travel to Montclair, N.J. from May 9-11 to play in the NCAA Tournament. The Lyons will compete in the four-team, double-elimination format against top-seed and host, Montclair State (36-6), Haverford College (27-9) and Farmingdale State (23-12) with the winner advancing to the new Super Regional format, a best-of-3 series set for May 16-17. Super Regional winners advance to the NCAA Division III Softball Championship in Tyler, Texas May 22-27.
WHEATON (30-10) – The Lyons earned an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament after claiming their tenth 30-win season in program history (first since 2004). Wheaton has never played Haverford College, is 1-0 against Farmingdale State and is 3-7 versus Montclair State in program history.
The Blue and White are hitting .346/.406/.476 (.avg/.obp/.slg) on the season to go along with 255 runs scored, 385 hits, 77 doubles, seven triples, 18 home runs, 225 RBI, 56 stolen bases, a 2.48 earned run average (ERA) and a .963 fielding percentage.
Wheaton features two student-athletes who are hitting over .400 in junior Emily Berardi (Boston, Mass./Boston Latin) and senior Ashley Brillon (Attleboro, Mass./Bishop Feehan). Berardi is hitting .423/.452/.577 with 20 runs scored, six doubles, two home runs and 22 RBI, while Brillon is batting .405/.461/.517 with ten doubles, one homer and 21 RBI.
Senior Jenna Rocha (Rehoboth, Mass./Dighton-Rehoboth) enters this weekend's tournament ranked third among all active NCAA Division III student-athletes in walks with 95. Rocha also has a .372/.497/.575 slash line with 11 doubles, four home runs, 28 RBI, 31 walks and five stolen bases. Sophomore Emma Hart (Lincoln, R.I./Lincoln) leads the team in hits with 50 in addition to four doubles, one triple, ten RBI, six walks and a team-high 16 stolen bases.
In the circle, senior ace Allison Baker (Orange, Conn./Amity Regional) is 14-5 on the season with one save, 13 complete games, a team-high 66 strikeouts (4.06 per game) and a 2.22 ERA in 113 2/3 innings pitched. Berardi is 7-3 overall with a 2.27 ERA and 37 strikeouts.
HAVERFORD (27-9) – The Fords will enter the NCAA Tournament on a nine-game winning streak which includes three shutouts during that span (Apr. 19-May 4). Haverford won the Centennial Conference championship outscoring its opponents 19-8 en route to its second conference title in program history.
Elizabeth Newman (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury) ranks first on the squad with a .427 batting average, 28 runs, 41 hits, five doubles, 18 RBI, a .451 on-base percentage, five stolen bases and a .479 slugging percentage. Jill Schnall (Wayne, Pa./Conestoga) is second on the club with a .400 batting average, 25 runs, 34 hits, six doubles, a team-high eight home runs, 27 RBI, a .500 on-base percentage, two stolen bases and a .753 slugging percentage.
In the circle, the duo of Emily Winesett (St. Petersburg, Fla./Canterbury School) and Sara Tauriello (Elma, N.Y./Iroquois) have combined for an 18-3 record and over 100 strikeouts. Winesett is 10-2 overall with a .196 opponents batting average, 63 strikeouts and a 1.04 ERA over 74 1/3 innings pitched, while Tauriello is 8-1, with a .169 opponents batting average, 60 punchouts and a 1.24 ERA in 56 1/3 innings.
LOOKING AHEAD – Montclair State is looking for a return to the NCAA Division III championship round, while Farmingdale State will play in the tournament for the fourth-straight season. The winner of the Montclair Regional will face the Kean Regional winner which consists of the following teams: Kean (32-11), Husson (30-10), Keene State (19-17) and Lebanon Valley (32-4).