FLORENCE, S.C. – The Francis Marion University women’s softball team will play host to its annual Patriot Invitational Tournament, Friday through Sunday (March 12-14) at the Freedom Florence Softball Complex.
The 33-team field includes four nationally ranked squads, headed by top-ranked and unbeaten Kennesaw State University (24-0). Each team will play five contests.
Games will start at 5, 7, and 9 p.m. on Friday; 11 a.m., 1, 3, 5, and 7 p.m. on Saturday; and 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m. on Sunday. One-day admission passes are $5 for adults, $4 for youth (ages 6-12), and under six are free. Three-day passes are available at $14 for adults and $11 for youth. Each ticket also includes a coupon for $1 off at the concession stand.
On Friday, the 11-9 Francis Marion squad will play Presbyterian College (19-2) at 5 p.m.and Fairmont State College at 9 p.m. On Saturday, the Patriots will meet Tusculum College at 11 a.m., while on Sunday, FMU will play Mars Hill College at 10 a.m. and Barton College at noon.
Junior center fielder Betsy Bouknight leads the Patriots in hitting at .394, while freshman third baseman Janine Allen is batting .364 with three home runs and 10 runs batted in. Freshman infielder Tatjana Slawson leads the teams in RBIs with 16, while sophomore catcher Jamie Wiggins has two home runs and 13 RBIs.
The young Patriot pitching staff consists of senior Natalie Taylor (2-0, 0.00 earned run average), and freshmen Sam Goff (6-6, 2.03) and Jessica Johnson (3-3, 2.49).