Feb. 19, 2014
Wrestling Winter Weather
Winter weather derailed travel plans for a trio of BIG EAST teams last weekend as only Butler, DePaul, St. John’s and Seton Hall were able to get to their respective destinations. The Blue Demons headed to the College of Charleston Classic in Mt. Pleasant, S.C., where they went 4-1. The Pirates re-routed to Greenville, N.C., where they went 2-1 at the Pirate Snow Classic. A pair of BIG EAST squads traveled to Fayetteville for the Arkansas Invitational, with the Red Storm going 2-2 and the Bulldogs finishing 0-4.
Providence’s plans to open the 2014 slate last week were cancelled as the Friars will now begin the season on Feb. 28 at the George Washington Colonial Classic in Washington, D.C. Villanova is set to begin its season on Friday at the FGCU Tournament in Fort Myers, Fla.
Early Clubhouse Leaders
Seton Hall’s Meredith Henze and DePaul’s Kirsten Verdun have had back-to-back standout weeks so far. Through seven games, Henze has batted .556 with 10 hits, eight RBI and a league-best 1.333 slugging percentage. Verdun has been an ace in the circle and at the plate. She shows a 5-1 record with a 0.98 ERA, 53 strike outs and limits batters to a .170 batting average. On offense, Verdun is batting .433 with five RBI and 13 hits.
Strength of Schedule
Two of Creighton’s first five games were against top-25 teams, including No. 7 Arizona State and No. 24 California. The Bluejays earned the upset win over the Bears, 6-4, on the final day of the Kajikawa Classic two weekends ago. Despite no ranked teams on the docket this weekend, two list among the top 100 in the most recent NCAA RPI, including Texas Tech (69) and Illinois (59).
Grace Kramer of St. John’s, a freshman right-hander, earned a spot on the BIG EAST Honor Roll this past week after carrying the Red Storm to a 4-3 win over Jackson State. The rookie started the game before returning to collect her first collegiate save. Over two appearances at the Arkansas Invitational, she struck out nine and showed a 2.21 ERA over 6.1 innings of work.
Butler: Frost Classic in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Creighton: UTA Hilton Invitational in Arlington, Texas
DePaul: NFCA Leadoff Classic in Clearwater, Fla.
Georgetown: University of South Carolina Tournament in Columbia, S.C.
St. John’s: Off
Seton Hall: Arizona State Diamond Devil Invitational in Tempe, Ariz.
Villanova: FGCU Tournament in Fort Myers, Fla.