The Scenic City welcomes Elon to town for its final Southern Conference series against the Chattanooga Mocs softball team Saturday and Sunday at Frost Stadium. The Mocs (21-14, 6-2 SoCon) and the Phoenix (18-16-1, 2-7 SoCon) meet for a 1 p.m. doubleheader Saturday and wrap up the weekend Sunday with a 2 p.m. first pitch.
Saturday’s contests serve as the Mocs’ annual Breast Cancer Awareness “Pink Game.” Chattanooga will sport pink jerseys and accessories in an effort to raise awareness about the disease and in support of those diagnosed.
UTC’s Greek organizations are also hosting a barbecue tailgate beyond the outfield fence in right-center. Chattanooga SGA will also be on hand at the tailgate giving away pink tank top shirts to those in attendance. The weekend comes to a close with a Greek post-game softball game on the field after the Mocs and Phoenix wrap up Sunday afternoon.
Coming off a doubleheader sweep of Tennessee Tech Wednesday, Chattanooga has won seven of its last eight games. The Mocs are also 10-1 at home this season with its only loss coming against Lipscomb. UTC is currently sitting in second place in the Southern Conference standings, looking to gain ground on leader Georgia Southern. The Eagles are just 1.5 games ahead of the Mocs going into Saturday.
The Mocs continue to make noise with sophomore Alyssa Taylor (Orange, Calif.) extending her hitting streak to 14 games, sophomore Anyssa Robles reaching base in 10 consecutive games and junior Nicole Osterman (Kissimmee, Fla.) returning to the lineup with vengeance. In just five games, Osterman has driven in seven runs and jacked three homeruns.
Pitching continues to be solid for Chattanooga, led by junior Taylor Deason (Clarksville, Tenn.) and sophomore Katie Henderson (Hixson, Tenn.). The duo has combined for 20 wins and five saves, thus far. Henderson leads the Mocs with 11 wins and Deason ranks top 20 in the nation with her outstanding 0.93 ERA (11th with 0.99 ERA through March 31).
Elon comes into the weekend after claiming a Tuesday night 7-3 victory over North Carolina A&T. Despite sitting in last place in the SoCon, the Phoenix have posted impressive conference wins over Western Carolina and Furman. Georgia Southern is the only SoCon team to sweep Elon.
Freshman Alaina Hall leads the Phoenix with a .369 batting average and totals a team-best 41 hits. Veteran Carleigh Nester provides Elon with its power, crushing 11 homeruns and driving in 32 runs on the season. The pitching staff is led by Caitlin O’Shea, maintaining a 2.61 ERA with five wins. The junior has combined for two shutouts and recorded one save.