ECU Earns Second Seed In 2007 C-USA Softball Championship
May 7, 2007
IRVING, TEXAS - The East Carolina softball team will head to Orlando this week for the 2007 Conference USA Softball Championship presented by Coca-Cola as the second seed, its highest pre-tournament designation since joining the conference in 2002.
In its four prior appearances in the league tourney, ECU has earned the six seed twice (2002 and 2004), the four seed (2006) and the three seed (2005). The Pirates earned their first-ever first round win in C-USA post-season play last season, defeating fourth-seeded UAB 8-0. In all, ECU has failed to qualify for the conference tournament just once in its six seasons as a member of C-USA and holds an all-time record of 2-8.
The championship takes place May 10-12 at the UCF Softball Complex in Orlando, Fla. The tournament is double-elimination and the champion earns C-USA's automatic berth into the NCAA Softball Championship. Houston clinched its first regular season title last weekend and will enter the championship as the No. 1 seed. East Carolina, by virtue of its No. 2 seed, also receives a first round bye. Third-seeded Tulsa will meet No. 6 Memphis for a chance to advance to meet the Pirates. Host and No. 4 UCF opens play against No. 5 Marshall, with the winner facing the top-seeded Cougars.
Memphis entered the final weekend riding a four-game winning streak and needed to sweep its series with UCF for a chance to make the tournament field. After three 2-1 victories over the Golden Knights, the Tigers season will continue their season in Orlando after clinching the sixth seed. Memphis has now won six straight conference games and eight of its last 10.
Houston took two of three games from Marshall to improve to 20-4 in the league and 39-16 overall. Sunday's win by the Herd was also critical to the championship pairings, as it pushed them into the postseason as well. Facing the possibility of ending its season prematurely, Marshall rebounded from Saturday's twin bill demise to smack three home runs to help secure a 5-2 win Sunday. The loss was the first in conference play at home for UH. The Cougars became the first team since DePaul in 2003 to win all of its conference series during the regular season and became just the third team to reach the 20-win plateau (Houston, Louisville, Depaul - '02, '03) in league play.
East Carolina solidified itself as the second seed with a weekend sweep of Southern Miss. The Pirates finish the regular season with a 38-18 overall record and a 14-9 mark in conference play. It marks the second-most conference wins for the school since joining the conference in 2002.
Tulsa and UTEP split their Saturday contests and the Golden Hurricane took the series with its 4-0 on Sunday. The win was Tulsa's 10th in 11 all-time meetings with the Miners. It also assured the Golden Hurricane of a winning record for the sixth consecutive season. The Golden Hurricane scored all four of its runs on Sunday in the third inning.
Every game of the 2007 Conference USA Championship presented by Coca-Cola will be broadcast online. UCF and ISP Sports will air any game that is not picked up by a participating institution. To access the schedule of games and "listen live" links, fans may click on www.conferenceusa.com or www.ucfathletics.com.