November 28, 2018 at 1:51 pm #58122
Softball Announces 2019 Schedule
AUBURN, Ala. – Auburn softball head coach Mickey Dean has released the schedule for the upcoming 2019 season. The Tigers are slated to play 56 regular-season games, including 33 at Jane B. Moore Field.
Auburn’s schedule is highlighted by games against five of the eight participates from last season’s Women’s College World Series (Oregon, Washington, Florida, UCLA and Georgia). In total, Auburn will play 14 teams which made the postseason during the 2018 season.
Auburn will play in five tournaments — two on the road and three at home — to begin the new season, before jumping into Southeastern Conference play in the middle of March. Beginning on Feb. 8 and running through Feb. 10, the Tigers will play five games in the Sand Dollar Classic in Gulf Shores, then return home for the Plainsman Invitational, Feb. 14-17.
While in Gulf Shores, Auburn will play Louisiana Tech and Missouri State on Feb. 8, before playing South Alabama and Western Kentucky the following day. The Tigers will wrap up the tournament against Florida A&M on Feb. 10.
In the Plainsman Invitational, Auburn will face UAB and Furman twice and Drake and Texas Tech a single time. The following weekend, the Tigers will play North Dakota State and Villanova twice and Eastern Illinois and Troy once during the Tiger Invitational.
On the final day of February and first two days of March, Auburn will travel to Fullerton, Calif., to participate in the Judi Garman Classic, where it will open play against Loyola Marymount and UTSA, before playing Pac-12 opponents Oregon, Washington and UCLA.
Auburn will conclude its non-conference tournaments with the War Eagle Challenge from Mar. 7-10, when the Tigers will play two games against Michigan State and Radford before playing single games against Louisville and Mercer.
“Something we are doing a little different this year is playing in two away tournaments to prepare us to play on the road in SEC play,” Dean said. “We performed extremely well at home last year and we want to improve on the road this year.
“We are kicking things off in Gulf Shores against good competition, and then, two weeks after that, we are heading out West and play two or three teams ranked in the Top 25 to begin things. That’s only going to prepare us for those road SEC games.”
After playing Georgia State in a mid-week contest on Mar. 13, Auburn will open SEC play with a three-game slate against Texas A&M Mar. 15-17, before traveling to Starkville, Miss., to play Mississippi State the following weekend.
A doubleheader against Kennesaw State Mar. 27 precedes a weekend series against Georgia, which is followed by three games in Knoxville, Tenn., against Tennessee Apr. 6-8. A brief four-game home stand against South Carolina (April 12-14) and Alabama State (April 17) prepares the Tigers for a road trip to Lexington, Ky., to face the Kentucky Wildcats.
Auburn’s regular season will conclude with a three-game slate against Florida at Jane B. Moore Field Apr. 26-28, before hitting the road to Fayetteville, Ark., to play three against Arkansas.
The SEC Tournament, which will be held in College Station, Texas, runs from Wednesday, May 8 to Saturday, May 11.
The Selection Show for the 2019 NCAA Division I Softball Championship will be announced Sunday, May 12 with Regional play following May 17-19 and Super Regionals May 23-26. The Women’s College World Series will be held in Oklahoma City, OK from May 30 to June 5.
“I’m looking for us to be consistent,” Dean said. “Whether we are playing at home or on the road or at a neutral site, I want to see us perform consistently. Last year, we did a really good job with our defense and pitching, but our hitting got stagnant on the road, so we need to figure out a way to get that adrenaline going with our bats and our focus this year is going to be on quality at-bats.”
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