Previewing the DePaul Softball Weekend

Michael Wotychiw previews the Demons on the Diamond as DePaul prepares for this weekend's Kickin Chicken Classic.

Kickin Chicken Classic

After struggling at the Texas Invitational two weeks ago, the DePaul Blue Demons come into a tournament unranked for the first time since 2007. The team heads to the Kickin Chicken Classic hosted by Coastal Carolina, needing to reverse their luck after starting off the season 1-4. Despite the record, the team has been in every one of the games they have lost, losing all four games by a combined 11 runs. Becca Heteniak leads the team with a .500 average, while Simone Ashkar leads the team with one homerun and shares the RBI lead with Katelyn Braget, with two each. Coach Eugene Lenti's three-pitcher rotation hasn't worked so far this season, but will definitely turn around as the season progresses. Heteniak had some tough luck, losing all three games she started, to ranked teams. Despite being 0-3, she is averaging about one strikeout/inning.

Coastal Carolina: The Demons will face the host team on Friday at 6:15. The Chanticleers come into the tournament with a 4-4 record. They started the season at the Palmetto State Showdown, where they won two of their three games. Two games were cancelled due to weather. They next participated in the Seminole Classic hosted by Florida State. After holding its own against the hosts, the team split its next four games, losing two to South Dakota St., while winner two from conference rival Gardner-Webb. Michelle Evans leads the offense with a .387 average, while teammate Jazmin Daigle leads the team with one home run and six RBI. Pitchers Katelin Edwards and Ashley Frederick lead the way on the hill for Coastal Carolina. Edwards (2-1) leads the team in ERA with a 1.38, while Frederick (2-2) owns a 2.39 ERA along with 18 K's.

Canisius: After a rough start to the season that saw the Griffs start 0-5, the team rebounded nicely last weekend, sweeping doubleheaders against both Norfolk State and Hampton. Lizzy Gatto leads the Griffs with a .476 average and is a perfect 5-of-5 on the basepaths. Michelle Fridey leads the team with some pop as she has accounted for nine RBI and 16 total bases. Both pitchers, Amanda Baun and Caroline Main, post ERA's of 2.85 or lower. Baun has accounted for 40 of the 61 K's, the two have racked up.

Jacksonville: The Dolphins come into the tournament with a 7-2 record, including an impressive win over a perennially strong Virginia Tech squad. The teams' two losses have been to Florida and Florida State. Katarina Engler leads five players who hit over .333, including Amanda Schmidt, who leads the team in home runs with two and RBIs with eight. The Dolphins boast four pitchers in a rotation that has combined to strike out 47, while only walking 16.

Eastern Kentucky: The Colonels come into the tournament 0-4 after dropping all four games in last weekend's tournament hosted by USC-Upstate. Cheyenne Pounds leads EKU at the plate, hitting .429, while Jena Handley provides some pop with seven RBI, as well as seven total bases.

Go to
Kickin Chicken Classic
for more information and to follow the Demons throughout the tournament.

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