Clarksville, TN – After five games on the road, the Austin Peay State University (APSU) softball team returns home to face Belmont for a three-game Ohio Valley Conference series, this weekend at Cathi Maynard Park-Cheryl Holt Field, as it looks to stay undefeated at home this season.
The two teams will open play, 1:00pm, Saturday with a doubleheader, and conclude the series on Sunday with a 1:00pm single game.
The APSU Governors (10-8, 5-6 OVC) come into the matchup having lost a mid-week OVC doubleheader to Murray State this past Wednesday, while Belmont (8-12, 4-7 OVC) took two games from Tennessee State.
Austin Peay State University is led offensively by senior shortstop Brooke Pfefferle, who is hitting at a .429 clip this season, including two doubles, a triple, and a home run, to go with nine runs scored and six RBI.
Three other APSU Govs also are hitting more than .300 after 18 games this season, starting with junior third baseman Lexi Osowski (.396, 2 HR, 10 RBI), senior outfielder Bailey Shorter (.365, 1 HR, 11 RBI), and senior pitcher/first baseman Kelsey Gross (.315, 1 HR, 19 RBI).
Belmont enters the weekend with only Bruin–Cheyenee Cavanaugh (.365)–hitting better than .300 so far this season. She also has 4 2B and 10 RBI.
In the circle, the APSU Govs pitching staff is led by Gross, who is 4-1 this season, including a shutout, a save, with an overall 3.03 ERA and 25 strikeouts in 34.2 innings of work. Freshman Jordan Benefiel is 3-2 this season, with a 1.77 ERA and 27 strikeouts in 23.2 innings pitched, while junior Harley Mullins is 3-5 overall, including a shutout and two saves this season.
The Bruins pitching staff is led by Alicia Veltri, who sports a 4-6 overall record, with a 3.58 ERA and 43 strikeouts in 56.2 innings pitched.
APSU Govs Hit and Run
The APSU Governors are 28-22-2 all-time versus Belmont, including a 13-9 mark in all games played in Clarksville, and have won the last six meetings overall between the two schools.
Senior Drew Dudley enters the weekend for the APSU Govs with a six-game hit streak.
Freshman pitcher Jordan Benefiel struck out a career single-game high nine batters in her start at Murray State on Wednesday.
Senior catcher Brett Jackson is hitting .352 over her last six games.
Senior Bailey Shorter’s three triples tie for the most by an individual player in the OVC.
Opponents .186 batting average against Jordan Benefiel this season is the lowest against any pitcher in the OVC.