Emily Gusse and Harvard prepare for four games in South Carolina (Envision Sports Media).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard softball team will face a reshuffled schedule this weekend, as the 2015 Adidas Tournament at Winthrop has been forced to change game times, opponents and locations as inclement weather across the eastern seaboard affects travel and playing conditions over the weekend.
Sunday, March 1 – Games played at Winthrop in Rock Hill, S.C.
10 a.m. – Hartford vs. Harvard
12 p.m. – Harvard vs. Winthrop
Harvard's double dip on Saturday will be hosted by USC Upstate at the Cyrill Softball Stadium. The Crimson will serve as the home team in its opener against Coppin St., and then play as the visitor against the de facto host Spartans.
Sunday's action returns to Rock Hill, South Carolina and Terry Field at Winthrop. The lone game not changed for the Crimson this weekend, Harvard will matchup against Hartford in the opener March 1, before taking on Winthrop at noon.
SCOUTING HARVARD (2-3)
The Crimson opened the 2015 campaign at the EMU Madeira Beach Spring Invitational, going 2-3. Harvard burst out of the gate with two eight-run performances that included a shutout of Wichita State and an 8-3 triumph over Villanova.
Individually, Harvard would be hard-pressed to find a better start, as three student-athletes captured the Ivy League's first weekly awards of the year. Senior co-captain Katherine Appelbecollected Player of the Week honors with a .400 average and four RBI. Sophomore Taylor Cabe was named Pitcher of the Week, throwing 15.1 innings with 14 strikeouts, a 2.28 ERA and just 12 hits allowed. Freshman Maddy Kaplan scooped up Rookie of the Week accolades after batting a team-best .417 with three RBI.
RELATED ARTICLE: Softball Sweeps First Ivy League Weekly Awards
SCOUTING COPPIN STATE (0-9)
The Eagles enter the weekend still in search of their first win of 2015. Coppin St. has gone winless at the UGA Red and Black tournament, as well as the Aggie Invitational through the first two weeks of the season. Generating runs has been a cause for concern for the Eagles, as opponents have outscored them 111-17.
Through nine games, senior shortstop Candice Van Horn leads the Eagles with a .235 batting average. She has five runs, four hits, four RBIs and a home run. Juniors Lauren Rogers and Alanna Williams have .214 and .200 batting averages, respectively. Rogers has totaled three hits and a run, while Williams has added four hits and two runs to the mix.
SCOUTING USC UPSTATE (6-2)
The Spartans remain at their home complex for the third straight weekend due to the schedule change. USC Upstate opened the year in Elon, North Carolina Feb. 7, defeating Radford, but falling to Elon. Since then, the Spartans have hosted the Upstate Classic, in which it went 3-0, and the Spartan Invitational, going 2-1.
USC Upstate's offense has not faced the same struggles as Coppin St., outscoring opponents 70-37 this year, winning by eight-run rule four times. Six Spartans hold batting averages above .400, including four players that have started all eight games. Cheyenne Griffin is the driving forcing, tallying a team-high 14 RBI and a .556 average. Karla Beasley is batting. 500, while Shellie Robinson has a .464 average to go with a .964 slugging mark.
Lexi Shubert handles the primary workload in the circle. Her 31 innings is three times as many as her teammates. She boasts a 4-1 record, 2.26 ERA and 43 strikeouts.
SCOUTING HARTFORD (0-0)
Hartford will be seeing its first game experience of the season in the Adidas Tournament, slated to play four games before meeting the Crimson on Sunday.
The Hawks are coming off an 8-30 season that saw them go 2-16 in America East play in 2014. The Hawks return their top offensive player in junior catcher Sawyer Fried, who finished the 2014 season batting .287 with a team-high .364 on base percentage and 19 RBI. Third baseman Jackie Kelly enters 2015 as the senior leader on Hartford's squad. Kelly batted .270 last season while scattering 24 hits, including eight doubles, over 35 games.
SCOUTING WINTHROP (5-9)
The hosts of the Adidas Tournament, Winthrop is 5-9 thus far, but enters the weekend just 1-6 in its last seven outings. At the Cougar Classic in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina last weekend, the Eagles dropped games to Bowling Green, Pittsburgh and UMass, but ousted Appalachian State.
Maddie Antone heads up the Winthrop offense, leading the team with a .442 average, 19 hits, three homers and 10 RBI. Sara Allen has chipped in nine RBI on a .357 average.
Three players have split time in the circle, including Allen who's 35.2 innings is the most on the pitching staff. She has a 3-3 record and a 5.50 ERA in 11 appearances. Dallas King has the lowest ERA at 2.93 in 28.2 innings, while Sutton Watson is 1-3 with a 7.33 ERA.