North Texas Daily

UNT takes on ULM for its final SBC series

UNT takes on ULM for its final SBC series

April 25
19:27 2013

Brett Medeiros / Staff Writer

The Sun Belt Conference tournament is now closer than ever as the Mean Green welcomes the University of Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks to Lovelace Stadium in UNT’s final regular season SBC series.

Coming off last weekend’s sweep of Middle Tennessee State University, the Mean Green (22-22, 9-9) is moving up the conference standings and is currently in fifth place – one game behind the fourth place Florida International University.

“We are looking to end the conference schedule on a high note by sweeping the last two conference series,” head coach T.J. Hubbard said. “Unless something out of the ordinary happens, we are locked in to either the fourth or fifth seed regardless if we get our job done.”

The advantage of being a fourth seed instead of the fifth is that the Mean Green would be on the opposite side on the bracket of the first seeded the nationally-ranked No. 16 University of South Alabama.

ULM (19-27, 3-14) is currently on a nine-game conference losing streak and is sitting in eighth place in the Sun Belt.

While the ULM record may not be very threatening, the Warhawks are the fastest team in the conference and one of the fastest in the country. ULM has an SBC-leading 75 stolen bases on the season, which rounds out to 1.64 successful stolen base attempts a game. That places the Warhawks at No. 35 in the country.

“I honestly don’t care how fast they are,” freshman catcher Bryana Wade said. “I threw out the fastest girl in the Big 12 twice this past week. If they steal, I’m going to let instincts take over, throw as hard as I can and if I get them out, then I get them out.”

UNT is looking for a three-game sweep of the Warhawks, but to do so, its offense will need to bounce after scoring only two runs in the last two games.

“We need to play our brand of softball out there,” senior pitcher Brittany Simmons said. “We have a great hitting staff and when they’re on there’s nothing to worry about.”

The pitching duo of Simmons and junior Ashley Kirk look to continue their success coming off the series versus MTSU. The UNT pitching staff gave up just five runs in the series.

The first pitch of game one is at 1 p.m. on Saturday with game two scheduled directly after. The final game of the series will start at 11 a.m. on Sunday.

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