UA softball looks to ride hot streak

By: Steve Andrews Special to the NWA Democrat-Gazette
Published: Wednesday, May 8, 2019
Arkansas coach Courtney Deifel talks to players during a game against Auburn on Sunday, May 5, 2019, in Fayetteville.
Photo by J.T. Wampler
Arkansas coach Courtney Deifel talks to players during a game against Auburn on Sunday, May 5, 2019, in Fayetteville.

Arkansas softball Coach Courtney Deifel is hoping her team's good play down the stretch will be a recipe for postseason success as the Razorbacks open play in the SEC Tournament today at the Davis Diamond in College Station, Texas.

No. 19 Arkansas (38-17, 12-12) enters the tournament as the ninth seed, tying four other teams for sixth place in the final standings. The Razorbacks will face the eighth seed, No. 13 Georgia (39-16, 12-12), in the first round today at 5:30 p.m.

At a glance

SEC Softball Tournament

At College Station, Texas

Today’s games

All times Central

Game 1 No 12 Mississippi State vs. No. 13 Texas A&M, 10 a.m.

Game 2 No. 6 Florida vs. No. 11 South Carolina, 12:30 p.m.

Game 3 No. 7 Missouri vs. No. 10 Auburn, 3 p.m.

Game 4 No. 8 Georgia vs. No. 9 Arkansas, 5:30 p.m.

Game 5 No. 5 Ole Miss vs. Winner Game 1, 8 p.m.

Thursday’s games

Game 6 No. 3 LSU vs. Winner Game 2, 11 a.m.

Game 7 No. 2 Tennessee vs. Winner Game 3, 1:30 p.m.

Game 8 No. 1 Alabama vs. Winner Game 4, 4 p.m.

Game 9 No. 4 Kentucky vs. Winner Game 5, 6:30 p.m.

Friday’s games

Game 10 Winner Game 6 vs. Winner Game 7, 3:30 p.m.

Game 11 Winner Game 8 vs. Winner Game 9, 6 p.m.

Saturday’s Championship

Winner Game 10 vs. Winner Game 11, 7 p.m.

"I think we are playing really good softball right now," Deifel said. "Our pitchers are really having a presence in the circle, and offensively, we are finding different ways to get on base and score runs."

The Razorbacks finished the regular season Sunday, completing a three-game sweep of Auburn, after outscoring the Tigers 13-3 in the series.

"Our girls just battled from beginning to end this past weekend, and I'm hoping we can continue to get that effort and keeping getting better," Deifel said. "Right now, we are just worried about ourselves. We just want to be the best version of ourselves that we can be."

It was also announced Monday that sophomore outfielder Hannah McEwen was named first-team All-SEC after hitting .402 to become the first Razorback ever to finish the regular season above. 400. Junior pitcher Autumn Storms was named to the All-SEC second team after posting a 20-6 record and 1.69 ERA.

Storms and sophomore pitcher Mary Haff (18-11, 1.92 ERA) combined to hold Auburn to two earned runs over the weekend, helping Storms earn SEC Pitcher of the Week honors as well. Senior Ashley Diaz, who hit .364 with a team-high 47 RBI was named SEC Co-Player of the Week.

"We are just coming together at the right time," Storms said. "Mary and I have each other's backs in the circle and our lineup is just getting big hits and scoring runs when we need them. I think it gives us some great momentum heading into the SEC Tournament."

Sports on 05/08/2019

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