Nov. 19, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Games against nine NCAA Tournament teams, including a three-game series with 2013 NCAA champion Oklahoma, as well as a home-and-home matchup with fellow Super Regional participant Alabama highlight the 2014 UAB softball schedule, head coach Marla Townsend announced on Tuesday.
Coming off a 40-win, record-breaking 2013 campaign that saw them advance to their first-ever NCAA Super Regional, the Blazers will play 55 games in 2014 in search of their fifth straight NCAA Tournament appearance.
“We take pride in playing one of the toughest schedules in the country,” Townsend said. “We are going to strive to compete day in and day out as we add many new teams to this year’s schedule. Team 15 will be relentless and pursue excellence as we continue our championship tradition at UAB in 2014.”
Of the team’s 55 games, 21 are to be played within the confines of the UAB Softball Field. The Blazers, who finished ranked 16th nationally to cap the 2013 campaign, will take part in three tournaments to open the year, totaling 14 games in tournament play, and will hit the road for 20 away games.
The season opens for UAB in Mobile at the South Alabama Mardi Gras Tournament, which runs Feb. 6-8. The Blazers will begin the 2014 slate against the host Jaguars, before also facing McNeese State, Austin Peay and Syracuse for the Blazers’ first four games.
A week later UAB will travel to Waco, Texas, to compete in the Getterman Classic hosted by Baylor Feb. 14-16. The Blazers’ opponents for the five-game weekend include East Carolina, Baylor, Drake, Iowa and Lipscomb.
UAB will open its home season on Feb. 19 when South Alabama comes to Birmingham for the Blazers’ first 2014 contest at the UAB Softball Field. Six days later the Crimson Tide of Alabama will travel to Birmingham for a 6 p.m. Tuesday night contest.
Athens, Ga., is the location for UAB’s final tournament, which opens on Feb. 28 and runs through March 2. The Blazers will face Western Carolina for two games, the St. John’s Red Storm for a single game, and the host Georgia Bulldogs twice to cap tournament play in the spring.
UAB will stay on the road for the next four games to include a matchup with SEC foe Mississippi State, and the start to 2014 Conference USA play in Greenville, N.C. against East Carolina.
After having only two out of their first 20 games in Birmingham, the Blazers will welcome the next five games at the UAB Softball Field March 11-16. UAB will compete in non-conference contests back-to-back days against Western Kentucky and Ball State, before jumping back into league play March 15-16 against the FAU Owls.
Following a midweek tilt at Jacksonville State on March 18, The Blazers will host Murray State on March 20, and FIU March 22-23. The second of three road trips to the state of Texas will be March 29-30 as UAB travels to Denton, Texas, to square off with the North Texas Mean Green.
The month of April will begin in Birmingham as Jacksonville State is scheduled to pay its return visit on April 1, before the Blazers hit the road for a twin bill against Lipscomb the following day. League play returns on April 5-6 when Tulsa makes a visit for a three-game set.
UAB will travel to Tuscaloosa on April 9 for a 6 p.m. contest against the NCAA Super Regional team from a season ago, before hosting in-state foe Troy on April 10. Southern Miss will welcome UAB on April 12-13 as UAB is set to face the Golden Eagles in Hattiesburg, Miss., in a three-game series, before the Blazers return home for five games against Kennesaw State (April 15) and Charlotte (April 18-19).
The remaining six regular season matchups for UAB will take place on the road, as the Blazers travel to Norman, Okla., to face the defending national champion Oklahoma Sooners for a three-game set April 26-27. The Blazers’ 2014 regular season closes out May 3-4 in San Antonio, Texas, with a three-game series against UTSA.
The 2014 Conference USA Championship will be held in Boca Raton, Fla., on the campus of FAU, and will run May 8-10.
For the latest news on Blazer sports, follow the UAB Athletics Twitter account, @UABathletics. For an in-depth look into the UAB softball program, follow @UABsoftball on Twitter and Instagram.