SEATTLE – After winning its first-ever WAC Tournament title. Seattle University softball will head to the University of Washington for the NCAA Tournament on Friday, May 17. The Redhawks earned the third seed in the region and will face Mississippi State in the first round.
Seattle U rolled through the WAC, winning all six series on its way to its first-ever WAC regular-season title. This weekend, the Redhawks went 3-0 at the WAC Tournament, beating New Mexico State, 3-2, in the finals. Carley Nance won Tournament MVP, hitting two walk-offs and then winning the title game as the pitcher. SU set a program record with 39 wins this year.
Sophomore Ally Choate led the WAC in batting (.404), on-base percentage (.462), and tied for the league lead in hits (72). She was an All-WAC First Team pick, along with fellow sophomores Nance and Bailey Thompson. SU features the only pitching staff (Nance, Andie Larkins, and Shianne Smith) in the nation to have three pitchers with at least five conference victories.
The Redhawks will face Mississippi State, an at-large selection from the SEC. The Bulldogs have won 33 games this season and are led by the power-hitting duo of Mia Davidson and Fa Leilua. They have combined for 47 home runs, 114 RBIs, and 92 runs in 2019. Davidson is a Top 10 finalist for USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year.
UW is the third seed nationally. It shared the Pac-12 regular-season title with UCLA. Pitchers Gabbie Plain and Taran Alvelo lead the Huskies. Plain is 19-2 with a 1.32 ERA to go with 194 strikeouts, while Alvelo is 24-4 with a 1.61 ERA and 257 Ks this season.
Fordham won the Atlantic-10 regular-season crown and then claimed the league’s automatic berth after the A-10 Tournament was canceled due to rain. Madie Aughinbaugh and Jordy Storm pace the Rams’ offense, hitting .364 and .357, respectively.
SU beat Fordham, 11-3 in five innings, in Las Vegas on Feb. 15. Madison Cathcart hit two home runs, while Kaylee Ree and Carley Nance both smashed solo shots. At UW on Mar. 10, the Redhawks nearly knocked off the Huskies, falling, 1-0. Nance went 5.1 innings and allowed no earned runs in the contest. Seattle U has never played Mississippi State.