Nov. 5, 2013
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -
The Providence College softball team announced its 2014 schedule on Tuesday, November 5. The Friars will play in three tournaments in a 52-game schedule that includes 21 conference games. Providence will play four teams out of the eight that qualified for the 2013 BIG EAST Tournament (USF, DePaul, Georgetown and Seton Hall).
Providence will open the season at the Florida Atlantic "Strike-Out Cancer" Tournament on Feb. 14-16. The Friars will face LIU, South Carolina, Massachusetts, Florida Atlantic and Maryland. South Carolina (Feb. 14) reached the NCAA Austin Regional last season, posting an overall 34-25 record on the season and reached the SEC Quarterfinals. The Maryland game (Feb. 16) will be a homecoming for graduate assistant coach Kathy McLaughlin, who played with the team 2008-2012. The Terrapins made it to the ACC Quarterfinals in 2013.
Next the Friars travel to Washington, D.C. for the George Washington Colonial Classic on Feb. 28-March 2. Providence will play Drexel, George Washington and Akron. George Washington (Feb. 28) is coming off its best season in program history with a 27-23 record.
The last tournament for Providence is the USF Under Armour Invitational Tournament in Clearwater, Fla. on March 7-9 and 14-16. Providence will play Central Michigan on March 7. The Chippewas appeared in the Ann Arbor NCAA Regional. The team captured the Mid-American Conference Tournament. The same day, the Friars will play Fordham, who went 36-23 and won their second A-10 title and clinched their third NCAA Tournament appearance in four years (Norman NCAA Regional). The following day (March 8) Providence squares off against St. Joseph's who made it to the A-10 tournament finals. The Hawks matched their program record for wins.
At the USF Under Armour Invitational Tournament, Providence will play the Dutch National on March 9. The national team was the European Champion 2009, 2011 and 2013. The Friars will then play Penn on March 12. Penn finished 30-20 last season, winning its second Ivy League title in program history and qualified for the NCAA tournament for the first time ever (College Station Regional).
The host team of the tournament, USF, will face off against the Friars on March 12. USF reached a No. 10 national ranking and received votes in the final NCAA poll. The team won the BIG EAST Title in 2013 and went to the Gainesville Regional. The Bulls also had a 17-game winning streak over the course of the season. Current seniors Sara Nevins and Kourtney Salvarola made the Team USA Roster. Providence closes out the tournament against Central Connecticut State University. The Blue Devils won the 2013 NEC Championship and made it to the Baton Rouge Regional, finishing the year with a 36-15 record.
Following the tournaments, Providence will play tough opponents DePaul, Fairfield and Creighton. DePaul finished last year with an overall record of 32-21. Fairfield finished 29-21, and reached MAAC championship game. BIG EAST newcomer Creighton went 29-18 overall in 2013.
The Friars will host 16 contests at home at Raymond Field on the campus of Providence College. The BIG EAST Championship will be held in Rosemont, Ill. on May 8-10.