CHARLOTTE, N.C.- Heading into the final Conference USA series, the Niners are looking to make the trip to Boca Raton, Fla. to play in the C-USA tournament. Charlotte (18-25, 8-12 C-USA) is sitting in ninth place in the standings with the sixth place Marshall (22-28, 9-9 C-USA) squad coming to town.
Charlotte split with UNC Greensboro during a midweek doubleheader on the road. Lexi Betancourt (Garner, N.C./ West Johnson HS) picked up the lone win for the Niners pitching a complete game allowing only one run.
Junior catcher Jackie Kleinsmith (Santa Maria, Calif./ Righetti HS) should be fully rested after getting Wednesday night off. Kleinsmith leads the Niners at the plate hitting .346 with a team leading 44 hits. Kleinsmith has seven doubles, a triple, five home runs and 29 RBI to her credit.
Jessie Fennell (Blaine, Tenn./ Grainger HS) has upped her batting average up 30 points after hitting a team leading .318 in the past ten games. Fennell has picked up seven hits and three RBI during that stretch.
Samantha Slade (Apex, N.C./ Apex HS) is second on the team with a .328 average posting 42 hits, nine doubles and seven home runs. Slade picked up her first RBI since April 2 against UNCG during the midweek contest giving her 23 on the season.
The team's home run and RBI leader Jessica Plemmons (Lexington, N.C./ North Davidson HS) has nine home runs and 33 RBI with two home runs and four RBI in the past 10 games. Plemmons is hitting .309 on the season and hitting .302 in Conference USA play.
Charlotte's ace Betancourt (17-12) will look to move up the program's all-time list over the weekend. Betancourt is tied for tenth with current pitching coach Katy Hackett for most wins in a single season (17). The redshirt sophomore is sitting in fifth behind Hackett for most strikeouts in a single season (174), Hackett has 176.
Marshall comes into the series holding the slight series advantage 5-4. The Niners have won the last three match-ups coming in 2007 and 2010.
First pitch of the series is slated for 12 pm on Saturday, April 26 with game two following. The Niners will wrap up the three game series on Sunday with a noon start.
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