Road stretch continues with doubleheaders at Briar Cliff, Mount Marty

By Jacob Knabel on Apr. 19, 2022 in Softball

SEWARD, Neb. – If all games are played as scheduled, the Concordia University Softball team will have completed the regular season by the end of the day next Tuesday (April 26). The final six games of the regular season slate are all on the road. The Bulldogs will be at Briar Cliff on Friday and at Mount Marty on Saturday. Head Coach Tatum Edwards’ squad has been idle since falling twice at Morningside on April 12. Concordia enters this week at 19-19 overall (7-9 GPAC).

The schedule below is subject to change, pending the weather. Please check the schedule page HERE for the latest updates.

This Week

Friday, April 22 at Briar Cliff (17-14, 7-5 GPAC), 3 p.m. DH
--Live Video | Live Stats

Saturday, April 23 at Mount Marty (23-9, 11-3 GPAC), 1 p.m. DH
--Live Video | Live Stats

By the numbers

·        The games this week will be pivotal as the Bulldogs attempt to secure a spot in the GPAC tournament. As things currently stand, Concordia resides in eighth place. It would appear the battle for the final few spots could be tight down the stretch. Making things more complicated at this time is the fact that the number of GPAC games played varies from team to team. While the Bulldogs have six GPAC games (three doubleheaders) left, other GPAC teams still have as many as 10 conference games to go. In other words, this week will be needed to provide more clarity.

·        The Bulldogs always have a chance when Camry Moore is in the circle. She enjoyed another stellar outing last week at Morningside while throwing an eight-inning complete game in the 2-1 loss. The only hitter to do any damage against Moore was Morgan Nixon, who accounted for both Morningside runs with a solo homer in both the second and ninth innings. Moore allowed two runs on five hits and a walk. In game two, Concordia found itself in a 7-0 deficit before putting three runs on the board in the seventh. Grace Boganowski tripled home a run and Moore singled in another. It was simply too little, too late. The Mustang pitching duo of Katherine Wurtz and Grace Buffington held the Bulldogs to a combined 10 hits on the day.

·        Moore will go down as one of the top players in program history for her abilities with both her bat and pitching arm. From an offensive perspective, Moore sports program career rankings of third in RBIs (116), fifth in runs scored (117), sixth in batting average (.390), seventh in home runs (14), 10th in doubles (31) and 12th in hits (161). On the program’s all-time pitching lists, Moore ranks first in ERA (1.94), third in wins (51), sixth in innings pitched (465.2) and seventh in strikeouts (329). Incredibly, Moore has issued only 38 walks in her college career as a pitcher. She was named Second Team All-GPAC in 2019 and First Team All-GPAC in 2021.

·        Although Moore’s ERA within conference is an impressive 0.84, her record in GPAC games is 4-5. That record has mostly been a result of the team’s inconsistency offensively. Concordia has managed to average 4.1 runs per game within conference play despite a team batting average of .241, on-base percentage of .296 and slugging percentage of .312 in GPAC games only. In terms of batting average within conference games, the leading Bulldog hitters have been Moore (.408), Caitlyn McGarvie (.318), Kylie Shottenkirk (.302) and Zoie Isom (.279). Concordia has homered only three times in conference play – two from Isom and one from Shottenkirk.

·        In GPAC games this season, Concordia has split five of the eight doubleheaders. The Bulldogs earned a sweep of Doane, got swept by both Midland and Morningside and split with Dordt, Northwestern, College of Saint Mary, Jamestown and Dakota Wesleyan. A year ago, Concordia went 15-7 in GPAC play and placed third in the regular season. Dating back to the 2014 season, the Bulldogs have finished at .500 or better in league play each year. Their highest place finish was a tie for second in 2017.

The opponents

Briar Cliff also has not played since April 12 when it dropped two games at Dakota State University (S.D.). A doubleheader versus Northwestern slated for April 13 was postponed. In conference play, Briar Cliff has been strong in the pitching department (2.61 team ERA). The ace of the staff is Kayla Guerrero, who is 6-3 with a 2.38 ERA in 73.2 innings. Like Concordia, the Chargers do not rely heavily on the home run, but Alexis Westercamp (five homers) has shown pop. Karina Cupples is hitting .390 to lead the way for Head Coach Erin Bly’s squad.

Mount Marty remains in the GPAC title hunt, currently one loss behind Midland (14-2 GPAC) at the top of the standings. Under first-year Head Coach Kayla Bryant, the Lancers have broken school records for overall wins and GPAC wins in a season. Mount Marty boasts perhaps the leading candidate for GPAC Player of the Year in Elliot Burns, who paces the GPAC in batting average (.538), home runs (13) and RBIs (51). The potent Lancer offense averages 6.8 runs per game. The pitching staff owns an ERA of 3.38 behind Kaylee Rogers (8-3, 3.05 ERA).

Next week

The 2022 regular season is set to conclude next Tuesday (April 26) with a 5 p.m. doubleheader at Hastings. The GPAC tournament will begin with pod play on May 4.