OXFORD, Ohio - The Miami University softball team hosts six games this week. On Wednesday, the RedHawks welcome Northern Kentucky for a non-conference doubleheader beginning at 4 p.m. On Friday, Miami takes on Toledo for a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. The RedHawks then face Bowling Green in single games on Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m.
GREAT START IN MAC: The RedHawks will look to carry over the momentum from last week, where they swept preseason MAC East Division favorite Kent State in a doubleheader to begin conference play at 2-0. They join as Akron as the only undefeated MAC teams that have begun league action (Ball State and Buffalo had their entire weekends washed out by the weather and field conditions). It continues Miami’s recent string of strong MAC starts. This is the fifth straight season the ‘Hawks won their opening league game and third straight year they have started 2-0.
END OF A STREAK: Miami had its two games against Buffalo canceled over the weekend due to poor field conditions. By conference rules, they will not be made up. Cancellations are going to happen on occasion due to the outdoor nature of the sport. The RedHawks have been exceedingly lucky in getting the MAC games in without cancellation. In fact it is the first time since April 23-24, 2005 (also at Buffalo) that Miami has not played its scheduled MAC games. The team went 183 league games between cancellations.
ABOUT NORTHERN KENTUCKY: Northern Kentucky is 3-26 on the season. The Norse have lost five straight contests, including three games against Atlantic Sun rival East Tennessee State over the weekend. NKU is led offensively by senior infielder Dee Dee Davis. She is hitting .294 with five home runs and 17 RBI. Pitching has been an issue for the Norse as they have a staff ERA of 8.25. Their top pitcher has been freshman Alyssa Enrique. She is 2-5 with a 6.56 ERA in 20 appearances (eight starts).
SERIES WITH NORTHERN KENTUCKY: Miami holds an 8-6 lead in the all-time series with NKU. Last season in Highland Heights, the RedHawks came away with a 5-4 victory when Tiyona Marshall singled home Taylor Shuey for the winning run in the top of the seventh inning. The second game of the scheduled doubleheader was rained out.
ABOUT TOLEDO: Toledo is 11-19 overall and 3-1 in the MAC. The Rockets had a strong opening weekend of conference play, splitting two games with Western Michigan on Friday and Saturday, before sweeping a doubleheader with Northern Illinois on Sunday. Toledo has been the second-best hitting team in the league with a team batting average of .296. It has been led offensively by sophomore outfielder Jessica Lemieux. She is hitting a MAC-leading .427 with one home run and 10 RBI. Its top pitcher has been freshman Emily Anderson. She is 10-10 with a 2.47 ERA in 23 appearances (18 starts).
SERIES WITH TOLEDO: Toledo holds a 43-41 all-time lead in the series with Miami. The RedHawks have won eight straight against the Rockets, including all three meetings last season. Miami swept a high-scoring doubleheader on March 29 in Toledo, taking the opener, 7-5 and the nightcap, 11-10. The teams then met in the opening round of the MAC Tournament in Akron on May 8. The RedHawks scored on an error in the bottom of the seventh to take a 5-4 win.
ABOUT BOWLING GREEN: Bowling Green is 11-16-1 on the season and 2-2 in the MAC. Last weekend, the Falcons opened up conference play by splitting single games against Northern Illinois on Friday and Saturday, and splitting a doubleheader with Western Michigan on Sunday. BGSU is led offensively by senior infielder Katie Yoho. She is hitting .326 with four home runs and 17 RBI. Its top pitcher is junior Jamie Kertes. She is 7-11 with a 2.21 ERA in 28 appearances (16 starts).
SERIES WITH BOWLING GREEN: The series between Miami and Bowling Green is tied at 45 wins apiece. The teams split their two meetings in Bowling Green last season. On March 30, the RedHawks earned a 3-2 win. The next day, the Falcons came back to take a 5-1 victory.
UP NEXT FOR MIAMI: The RedHawks hit the road next weekend for their MAC action. Miami travels to Western Michigan on Friday, April 11 for a doubleheader that begins at 1 p.m. The RedHawks then head to Northern Illinois for single games on Saturday, April 12 at 6:30 p.m. (EDT) and Sunday, April 13 at 2 p.m. (EDT).