February 12, 2018

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Mississippi State:
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ASU Black and Gold Tournament:            Tournament Notes

The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team will load the bus and play its first true road game of the season with a matchup at Southeast Conference foe Mississippi State on Thursday, Feb. 15 before traveling to the Alabama State Black and Gold Tournament beginning on Friday, Feb. 16 through Sunday, Feb. 18.

UT Martin will matchup against SEC foe Mississippi State with first pitch scheduled for 4 p.m. and can be seen on SEC Network+ or through the WatchESPN app. The Skyhawks will then travel to Starkville, Miss. over to Montgomery, Ala. to battle in the Alabama State Black and Gold Tournament. The squad will open the field against Holy Cross on Friday at 2:30 p.m. before squaring off against Fort Wayne (10 a.m.) and Middle Tennessee (5 p.m.) on Saturday. The tournament will close with a matchup against Appalachian State at 10 a.m. on Sunday.

The Skyhawks (2-2) enter the week of matchups after splitting a pair of doubleheaders on the opening weekend of the season at the ULM Mardi Gras Classic. UT Martin would drop its season opener to Stephen F. Austin (7-1) before winning its first game of the 2018 season against Central Arkansas (3-1). The Skyhawks would then close out their tournament stay by splitting the day with a victory over Grambling State (10-2) before falling to North Texas (5-2) in the finale.

UT Martin posted a strong offensive performance in the tournament, tallying .315 batting average as a team while notching 10 extra base hits and 15 RBIs. Senior Jodie Duncan paced the squad with a .500 batting average with seven hits – including a double – while driving in four RBIs. Junior shortstop Alli Fulcher notched a .923 slugging percentage in the four games while tallying three extra base hits and five RBIs. As a whole, four Skyhawks tallied multiple RBIs in the field while junior Gracyn McBride launched a pair of home runs.

In the pitching circle, UT Martin turned to a pair of new faces to lead the staff. Sophomore transfer Hannah Ridolfi posted a 1-1 record along with a 2.90 ERA in 9.2 innings of work. Ridolfi would bounce back from a rough outing her Division I debut before posting back-to-back scoreless appearances in relief while holding her opponents to just a .182 batting average. Freshman Caitlin Karo (1-1, 3.50 ERA) also posted her first collegiate victory, striking out seven in 12 innings of work.

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