MIAMI (April 5, 2012) - The FIU softball team (16-16, 4-3 SBC) is set to open its longest conference homestand of the season by hosting ULM from April 6-7, and No. 8 Louisiana from April 10-11 at the FIU Softball Complex. The Panthers will have just one more home game after this series in the beginning of May.
FIU will open the weekend with a three-game set against ULM (16-13, 3-6 SBC) starting with a doubleheader on Friday at 4 p.m. The series wraps up on Saturday at 1 p.m.
The Warhawks are winners of four of their last six, including a series win over Troy. ULM was swept by South Alabama to open SBC play and dropped two of three to Middle Tennessee last weekend.
ULM is led offensively by freshman Alexis Cacioppo's .345 average and four homeruns. She is also tied for the team lead in RBI and runs scored with 20. Junior Janel Salanoa follows with a .341 average and has a team-best 30 hits.
In the circle, sophomore Stephanie Routzon has received a majority of the starting assignments and has a 3-8 record to go along with a 3.98 ERA. Junior Samantha Hamby has been the most effective pitcher for the Warhawks, leading the staff with a 3.16 ERA.
Then on Tuesday, April 10, the Panthers will face its toughest test of the season as No. 8 Louisiana comes into town for three games. The teams will square off in a doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. and then finish the series the following day with one game at 6 p.m.
The Ragin' Cajuns are 30-1 overall and 5-1 in the Sun Belt Conference, losing their only game to Troy. UL boasts four players hitting over .400 including senior Christi Orgeron, the SBC leader in homeruns (12) and RBI (60). Pitcher Jordan Wallace is 16-0 in 18 starts with a 2.41 ERA.
As a team, Louisiana leads the league in hitting with a .364 average and pitching with a 2.17 ERA.
FIU will counter with the SBC leader in strikeouts in sophomore Mariah Dawson (12-8) as the right hander has registered 121 whiffs this season. Senior Ashley McClain is currently riding a nine-game hitting streak and is fourth in the conference with a .418 batting average. She is also second in the league in on-base percentage (.535) and slugging (.659).
Tickets for all games can be purchased at the front gate of the FIU Softball Complex, on the phone at 305-FIU-GAME or online through FIUSports.com.
About FIU Athletics: FIU Athletics is home to more than 400 student-athletes in 18 different sports, and is a proud member of the Sun Belt Conference and an affiliate member of Conference USA (men's soccer). Athletic events are played in seven different venues on FIU's campuses (Modesto A. Maidique and Biscayne Bay), including U.S. Century Bank Arena and Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium.
About FIU: Florida International University is recognized as a Carnegie engaged university. Its colleges and schools offer more than 180 bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs in fields such as engineering, international relations, architecture, law and medicine. As one of South Florida's anchor institutions, FIU is worlds ahead in its local and global engagement, finding solutions to the most challenging problems of our time. FIU emphasizes research as a major component of its mission and enrolls nearly 48,000 students in two campuses and three centers including FIU Downtown on Brickell and the Miami Beach Urban Studios. More than 140,000 alumni live and work in South Florida. FIU is a member of the Sun Belt Conference and has 400 student-athletes participating in 18 sports. For more information about FIU, visit www.fiu.edu.