The Maryland Terrapins (21-17, 2-7 ACC) host Virginia Tech in their first home, three-game conference series of the season at the Terrapin Softball Complex this weekend (April 8-9). The No. 24 Hokies (28-8, 7-2 ACC) meet the Terps for a doubleheader Saturday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., followed by a 1 p.m. game on Sunday.
The Terrapins have won seven of their last nine games, including a doubleheader Wednesday over Delaware State (10-1, 6-5) in a non-conference evening matchup. The wins extend Maryland's home record to 8-0 for the season. The last time the Terps won eight straight in College Park was in 2003.
Noting the Terrapins
Jenny Belak posts the team-high of a .381 batting average with 48 hits on the season and 23 runs. She has recorded nine of the Terrapins' 25 stolen bases, exceeding her season total of seven stolen bases in 2005. Lindsay Klein (.321) and Nikki Smith (.308) are two other key players behind the plate for Maryland. Klein holds the team-high of 24 RBI and ten doubles while Smith leads the Terps with a .549 slugging percentage. A total of five Terrapins are hitting better than their 2005 season averages.
Maryland hurler Crews holds a 13-8 record for the Terrapins. Crews (2.00 ERA) has 149 strikeouts over 129.2 innings pitched and 29 appearances. Freshman Meredith Nelles is 6-7 for the Terps with 96 K's on the year.
Scouting the Hokies
The Hokies come into College Park riding a five game winning streak and improving their ranking to No. 24 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25.
Overall, the Hokies post a .308 batting average, with a .415 slugging percentage. Virginia Tech won a two-game series against Boston College on April 2, 7-6 and 6-0. The Eagles were ahead 6-1 in the sixth inning, when the Hokies scored five runs in the bottom of the inning, then followed up with a home run in the seventh to take the win. The Hokies had 13 hits, with two players registering two hits in the series.
The Hokies' leading offensive players are freshman Erin Ota (.420) and senior Kelly Brown (.356). Ota has 34 hits in 81 at-bats, while Brown posts the team-high of 42 hits and 21 runs. Left-hander Stephanie Savre leads with 25 RBI, as Jessica Everhart is batting .366 for the second-highest batting average on the squad.
Angela Tincher (18-2) leads on the mound for the Hokies with 25 appearances, 310 strikeouts and a 0.67 ERA. Tincher went 4-0 on the week, holding the top spot in the ACC for strikeouts. Katie Maynard posts a 2.72 ERA for Virginia Tech over 90.0 innings pitched.
Last Time Out
Last season, the Terps won 2-of-4 games against ACC newcomer Virginia Tech. Maryland defeated Virginia Tech in a doubleheader, 10-0 and 6-3, after dropping the first game a day earlier (Mar. 26-27). Lindsay Klein had five RBI in the doubleheader while Keri Lounge hit her first home run of the year. The Terps fell to the Hokies, 5-3, in the quarterfinal of the ACC Championship to end the season for the Terps (May 14).
First pitch against Virginia Tech is scheduled for 1 p.m. on Saturday, admission is free. The game can also be followed on Gametracker at www.umterps.com.