Softball continues road swing on Friday
The JU softball team hopes to stay hot in A-Sun play as it plays ETSU in a doubleheader on Friday at 4 p.m. in Johnson City, Tenn.

The Dolphins (24-12, 4-0 A-Sun) round out the road trip with a twin bill on Saturday at 4 p.m. against USC Upstate, who are receiving votes in the national polls.

“This is a good test for us,” said JU head coach Amanda Lehotak. “We started off really well last weekend, but I want our kids to learn that each A-Sun doubleheader is a new challenge. Hopefully we can continue to sustain our momentum.”

The Dolphins return to the diamond after sweeping a doubleheader against Georgia Southern, 4-0 and 8-2, on Tuesday in Statesboro, Ga.

Junior Amanda Schmidt tormented the Eagles with seven RBI on the day, while sophomore Olivia Kline and junior Brittany Eppley each had solid efforts in the circle to help secure the sweep.

JU sweep Mercer (March 25) and Kennesaw State (March 26) in its first set of A-Sun games last weekend thanks in part to junior Sarah Sigrest.

The Daphne, Ala. native tossed 11 shutout innings and allowed just one hit each game to get both wins against Mercer. In the first game, she no-hit the Bears for 6.2 innings before giving up her lone hit. Sigrest finished the weekend allowing two runs, one earned, in four innings to get the Game One win against Kennesaw State.

JU also had five players hit better than .400 at the plate - led by Eppley’s .556 clip (5-for-9) with three RBI and two doubles.

The Bucs (13-17, 2-2) swept Belmont, 2-0 & 10-2 (5), to bounce back after dropping two to Lipscomb in the A-Sun opener.

Katie Henderson leads the Bucs with a .376 average and Jackie Baird has a team-best 24 RBI. Jessica Duncan and Shelby Morris each have six wins in the circle to pace the pitching staff.

The Dolphins have swept the last three doubleheaders against ETSU to take a 7-3 lead in the all-time series.

The Spartans’ (30-5, 2-2) momentum was halted after dropping a doubleheader to Lipscomb on March 27. USC Upstate opened the year with 25 straight wins, but have a 5-5 mark in the last 10 games.

The Spartans offense is led by Jenna Lewis who is batting .447 at the plate in 34 contests. Katie Zauner is hitting .406 with team-highs in doubles (12) and RBI (34).

Morgan Childers is the rock of the USC Upstate pitching staff after accumulating a 21-3 record with 250 strikeouts in 140.2 innings.

Last season, the Dolphins swept the Spartans in the regular season, but USC Upstate used a 7-4 win to eliminate JU in the A-Sun tournament. The Spartans hold a 5-2 series lead against the Dolphins.