Kansas returns to Florida for Citrus Classic II

Citrus Classic II

Date March 2-5, 2017
Location Orlando, Fla.
Notes Game Notes

Audio Audio Stream
Stats Live Stats 

LAWRENCE, Kan. — Kansas softball heads back to the Sunshine State for the Citrus Classic II, March 2-5, in Orlando, Florida. The Jayhawks will play six games over four days against Boston College, Purdue, Mercer, FIU, South Alabama and James Madison in their fourth nonconference tournament of 2017.

Listen to every pitch, home and away, all season long as part of the Jayhawk Radio Network, in partnership with KJHK, the University of Kansas’ student radio station, KLWN and KWOD. All of KU’s contests will be carried live, for free, at KUAthletics.com/radio or by clicking the link on the online schedule. Fans can also get in-game updates via twitter by following @KUsoftball.

About the Jayhawks
Kansas traveled to Texas for the third weekend of the season and came home with a 3-2 mark after playing five games at the Cardinal Classic. With the 3-2 record during the nonconference tournament, KU improved to 10-5 in 2017. Both losses in Texas were decided by a single run and in walk-off fashion. 

At the plate, Kansas is hitting .289, the fourth-best batting average in the Big 12 Conference. KU has recorded the third-most hits in the league with 113, including 36 for extra bases. The Jayhawks lead the Big 12 in home runs hit with 16 in the first 15 games of 2017. Senior outfielder Lily Behrmann is fifth in the Big 12 with a .405 batting average and tied for third in walks recorded with 11. Junior infielder Jessie Roane is batting .360 and is first in long balls hit (5). She also has driven in a conference-best 18 RBIs. Defensively, the Jayhawks have recorded just eight errors in 99 and one-third innings played in 15 games, good for the best fielding percentage (.982) in the league. 

In the circle, Kansas has posted the lowest ERA in the Big 12 with a 1.27 ERA. All five Jayhawk pitchers have under a 2.00 ERA. Sophomore pitcher Alexis Reid owns a 6-1 record in 2017 and tossed two more shutouts last weekend, while allowing just one earned run in four appearances. She has four shutouts on the year with a 0.90 ERA, the best in the league, and 27 strikeouts. 

Scouting Boston College
The Eagles head to Florida for the Citrus Classic II with an 8-7 mark on the year and have won just one of its last five games entering the fourth weekend of the season. Boston College is one of three programs that Kansas will face on the diamond for the first time in program history. At the plate, the Eagles are batting .238 in 2017 with 94 hits, including 12 long balls, and 34 walks. Three Eagles are hitting above .300 so far this season, led by junior utility Jordan Chimento. She is hitting .354 in 15 starts with three home runs and a team-best 12 RBIs. In the circle, Boston College’s pitching staff has posted a 2.90 ERA with 81 strikeouts and 40 walks. Junior pitcher Jessica Dreswick owns a 5-2 record in a team-high eight starts. She has struck out a team-best 40 batters, while allowing 19 walks in 50 and two-thirds inning of work. 

Scouting Purdue
Under first-year head coach Boo De Oliveira, Purdue owns a 2-12 record in 2017. The Boilermakers have won one of their last five outings with their two victories against UC Santa Barbara and St. Mary’s. Kansas and Purdue square off on the diamond for the fourth time in program history this weekend at the Citrus Classic II. Offensively, the Boilermakers are batting .268 on the year with 95 hits and 29 walks. Purdue has hit seven doubles, two triples and one home run in 14 games. Junior outfielder Maya Hughes leads the squad with a .386 average at the plate. She also leads the team with 17 hits, including one of Purdue’s two triples. In the circle, the Boilermakers have posted a 7.35 ERA after giving up 90 earned runs in 85 and two-thirds innings of work. Sophomore pitcher Maddie Damon has a 2-3 record in the circle with a 4.69 ERA in a team-high 34 and one-third innings pitched this season. She has struck out a team-best 18 batters, while giving up 14 walks.

Scouting Mercer
The Bears enter the Citrus Classic II with an 8-7 record in 2017 and have won four of their last five games heading into the fourth weekend of the year. Mercer will player a doubleheader against Florida A&M before the start of the tournament on Friday. Kansas and Mercer meet for the second time in program history on Friday. At the plate, Mercer is batting .305 with 117 hits, 36 extra-base hits, and 46 walks. Junior outfielder Meghan Rud is hitting a team-best .442 in 15 starts with 23 hits, including two triples and a home run. Junior infielder Quirisa Mauga leads the team with 14 RBIs and is tied for the most long balls (3). In the circle, the Bears have tossed a 3.94 ERA with 53 strikeouts and 36 walks in 96 innings of work. Freshman Stella Preston is 3-2 on the year with a team-low 2.44 ERA after surrendering 13 earned runs in a team-high 37 and one-third innings pitched. She leads the team with 23 strikeouts and has a team-low .190 opponent batting average in five starts and seven appearances.

Scouting FIU
The Panthers are 11-5 heading into the fourth weekend of the 2017 campaign and have won three of their last five games. Kansas and FIU meet on the diamond for just the second time in program history this weekend at the Citrus Classic. At the plate, the Panthers are batting .277 collectively with 119 hits, including 20 for extra bases, and 64 walks. Sophomore outfielder Jackie Schoff leads the offense with a .462 batting average and 24 hits. Senior infielder Stephanie Texeira leads the squad with 18 RBIs and is hitting .347 on the season. In the circle, FIU has a 2.04 ERA after giving up 32 earned runs in 110 inning pitched. Freshman pitcher Shannon Saile has thrown the most innings (42) of all the pitchers on FIU’s staff. She has a 2-4 record with 57 strikeouts and a shutout. 

Scouting South Alabama
The Jaguars have won 13 of their 14 games in 2017 and enter the Citrus Classic II with a 13-1 overall record. South Alabama’s lone loss on the year came against nationally-ranked Alabama on Feb. 15. Saturday’s meeting with the Jayhawks marks the first time the two programs will face off on the diamond. Offensively, the Jaguars have a team batting average of .302 with 103 hits, including three triples and six home runs, and 38 walks. Redshirt freshman outfielder MC Nichols leads the team with a .514 batting average in 13 starts. She leads the team with 18 hits. Senior outfielder Amanda Minahan has recorded a team-best two long balls and 10 RBIs. The Jaguars’ pitching staff has posted a 0.45 ERA with 108 strikeouts and 30 walks. Junior pitcher Devon Brown is 6-1 in the circle with a 0.41 ERA and a team-best 77 strikeouts. She has thrown six shutouts and recorded a save. 

Scouting James Madison
James Madison heads into the Citrus Classic II with a 12-2 overall mark on the year. Its only two losses on the season were against nationally-ranked opponents Missouri and Auburn. The meeting on the diamond is the first in program history between Kansas and JMU. The Dukes are also the first top-25 team that KU will face this season. At the plate, JMU is batting .327 with 124 hits, including 31 extra base knocks, and 38 walks. Senior utility Niki Prince is leading the offensive charge with a .455 batting average and is tied for the most home runs hit (2) and runs batted in (12). She also has recorded a team-best five doubles. The Dukes’ pitching staff has posted a 0.92 ERA after surrendering 12 earned runs in 91 innings of work. Junior pitcher Megan Good has a perfect 8-0 mark in the circle with a team-best 78 strikeouts and a 0.27 ERA. She has given up just two earned runs in 51 innings of work.

The Jayhawk Way
From the moment a student-athlete steps on campus, Kansas head softball coach Megan Smith and her staff begin the process of instilling the Jayhawk Way into their team. The philosophy guides the Jayhawks in competing on the diamond, in the classroom and being a part of the community. There are several core values that the Jayhawks learn to live by while playing at Kansas: family, academics, character and hard work. 

Around the Nation
After a strong start to the 2017 campaign, Kansas ranks among the top of several national statistics. KU’s .982 fielding percentage is 12th in the nation. The Jayhawks have the 14th-best ERA in the country after Kansas’ pitching staff has posted a 1.27 ERA. KU ranks 25th in home runs per game (1.1) and 55th in slugging percentage (.463). Junior infielder/catcher is 14th in the nation in RBIs (18) and 18th in home runs hit (5). Sophomore hurler Alexis Reid is fourth in the country in shutouts pitched (4) and 26th in victories recorded (6).

Up Next
Kansas comes home to Rock Chalk Park for the Jayhawk Invitational March 10-13. KU will host five games over four days against Wisconsin-Green Bay, Drake and Iowa. Every game of the weekend will be available on the Jayhawk Radio Network via KUAthletics.com/radio. 

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