February 24, 20121234567RHE
Virginia Tech0000000041
Win: KIIHNL (4-2) 7.040045
Loss: Jasmin Harrell (4-3) 7.072155
THURMAN (LIP) 312010
Kylie McGoldrick (VT) 201010
Kelsey Mericka (VT) 301000
Kristen Froehlich (VT) 301000
Bkaye Smith (VT) 301000
February 24, 201212345678RHE
Win: Whitney Kiihnl (5-2) 6.061025
Loss: Betz (0-1) 7.096233
Parker (WAGNER) 513300
Kelsey Cartwright (LIP) 413000
Lady Bison Softball Primed for CofC Classic
Thursday, February 23, 2012
By Colby Wilson
Lady Bison Softball Primed for CofC Classic

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Lipscomb softball will play five games in three days against top-level competition at this weekend’s College of Charleston Classic. The Lady Bison open play at 9 a.m. (CT), Friday, against Virginia Tech followed by Wagner at 11 a.m. Saturday, Lipscomb will face Louisiana-Monroe (1 p.m.) and local foe Middle Tennessee (5 p.m.) Saturday before closing out the tournament against host College of Charleston, Sunday at 3 p.m.

Senior Whitney Kiihnl powered the Lady Bison to victory in both Saturday games last weekend. The Batesville, Miss. native threw two complete games, running her record to 3-2 with a 2.44 ERA and 30 strike outs this season. She also threw her seventh career no-hitter, and first of the season, in the Round Robin opener against Butler.

Junior transfer Kelsey Cartwright leads the Lady Bison at the plate. She’s hitting .333 through six games and smacked her first home run last weekend. Sophomore Rena’ Cothron and freshman Gracey Aguirre have each driven in three runs to lead the Lady Bison through the season’s first six games.

Last Time Against This Weekend’s Opponents

This will be a weekend filled with first meetings for Lipscomb. This will be Lipscomb’s first meeting against three of their five opponents this weekend (Wagner, Louisiana-Monroe and College of Charleston). In 2009, Lipscomb beat Virginia Tech 5-4 at Draper Diamond. Caroline Mason drove in three runs to pace the offense and Whitney Kiihnl went the distance for the victory, striking out three. The Lady Bison last faced MTSU in 2008, splitting a doubleheader in Murfreesboro.

Kiihnl Wins Two in Rain-Shortened Lady Bison Round Robin

Kiihnl no-hit Butler to open the Lady Bison Round-Robin and picked up the victory in the second game to give Lipscomb two big victories. Sophomore Haley Elliott won the first game with a walk-off home run with two outs in the seventh inning. In game two, Cartwright hit her first home run in a Lipscomb uniform and senior Caroline Mason drove in two to pace the Lady Bison offensive attack. Inclement weather forced the cancellation of Sunday’s match-ups.

Lipscomb Posts 1-3 Record at USA Mardi Gras

After winning the season-opener against Jacksonville State, the Lady Bison lost three straight to end the Mardi Gras Invitational. SEC foes Mississippi State (3-1) and second-ranked Alabama (15-4) downed the Lady Bison in back-to-back games. Host South Alabama closed out the tournament for Lipscomb by handing the Lady Bison a 6-1 defeat.

Lady Bison Picked to Finish Second, Kiihnl and Mason Earn Preseason A-Sun Honors

Seniors Kiihnl and Mason were named to the preseason Atlantic Sun All-Conference team, and Lipscomb was picked to finish second in a vote of the conference coaches. Kiihnl was chosen as the Preseason Pitcher of the Year by a fan vote on the A-Sun’s Facebook page.

Quick Scout

  • Viriginia Tech – Holding opponents to .208 average; junior ace Jasmin Harrell has already thrown six complete games this season.
  • Wagner – Have not competed yet this season; hit a paltry .200 as a team in 2011.
  • Louisiana-Monroe – In just 10 games this season, have already stolen 26 bases.
  • Middle Tennessee – One of three teams Lipscomb will face this weekend that are allowing opposing teams to hit .300 or better: Wagner (last season: .303) and Louisiana-Monroe (.319) have higher OBA’s than MTSU’s .301. 
  • College of Charleston – Hitting .313 as a team and have limited opponents to a .184 average through seven games.

Fact of the Weekend

This will be the third time in four years Lipscomb has played an early-season tournament in South Carolina. Last season, the Lady Bison went 2-3 at Coastal Carolina’s Chanticleer Challenge; Lipscomb defeated Providence and host Coastal Carolina, but lost twice to Georgia Tech and once to Kansas. In 2009, Lipscomb won four of five at Charleston Southern’s Low Country Opener, shutting out UNC Wilmington twice and Charleston Southern once. They also defeated North Carolina A&T and lost to Charleston Southern. Kiihnl threw two shut outs en route to her first career A-Sun Pitcher of the Week honor.

On Deck

The Lady Bison head for the sun and softball of the Citrus Classic at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex, March 2-4. Lipscomb will face South Alabama for the second time, as well as Long Island, Penn State, Ball State and St. John’s in Kissimmee, Fla.