HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The University of Southern Mississippi softball team announced its 2014 schedule. The 56-game schedule consists of 26 home games at the Southern Miss Softball Complex. The Golden Eagles will play 14 games against teams that competed in the 2013 NCAA Regionals, including a pair of teams that advanced to the Women's College World Series.
"Our schedule is packed with some of the best teams in the country," co-head coach Jon Malgradi stated. "Our players are built with a competitive fire that will help them not only get through this season, but to get through it with lots of success. The schedule was built to challenge, teach and prepare our squad for a push in Conference USA play."
Southern Miss opens up the 2014 season with a three-game road series against NCAA Tournament regular Arizona on Feb. 7-9. The Golden Eagles then travel to Tallahassee, Fla. for the 2014 Renegade Classic hosted by Florida State. USM takes on North Dakota State and NCAA Super Regional participant Florida State on Friday, Feb. 14. The Golden Eagles close out pool play with Hofstra, who also competed in the 2013 NCAA Regionals, on Saturday, Feb. 15 before beginning bracket play. The softball team concludes the Renegade Classic on Sunday, Feb. 16.
Following the tournament in Tallahassee, Southern Miss returns to Hattiesburg for an eight-game homestand.
The Golden Eagles open up the home schedule with an in-state foe. USM welcomes Ole Miss to the Southern Miss Softball Complex on Tuesday, Feb. 18 for a doubleheader.
Southern Miss continues the homestand with a four-game series against Detroit. The series begins with a single game on Friday, Feb. 21 and continues with a doubleheader on Saturday, Feb. 22. Southern Miss and Detroit conclude the series with a single game on Sunday, Feb. 23.
USM finishes off the home swing with a doubleheader against NCAA participant Baylor. The Golden Eagles and Bears square off on Wednesday, Feb. 26.
The Golden Eagles depart Hattiesburg for the 2014 Texas Invitational in Austin, Texas on Feb. 28-March 2. USM opens the tournament with Texas State before taking on tournament host and College World Series quarterfinalist Texas. Southern Miss continues the Texas Invitational with Texas Southern and Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday, before concluding the event with a game against ULM on Sunday morning.
Southern Miss opens Conference USA play with a three-game road series against UTEP. The series begins with a doubleheader on Saturday, March 8, and concludes with a single game on Sunday, March 9.
USM returns home for six consecutive games including a C-USA weekend series.
The Golden Eagles play host to Alcorn State in a three-game nonconference series. The two teams will play a doubleheader on Wednesday, March 12 and a single game on Thursday, March 13.
Southern Miss welcomes C-USA newcomer Middle Tennessee to Hattiesburg for a three-game conference tilt starting on Saturday, March 15. The series starts with a double dip on Saturday and ends with a single contest on Sunday afternoon.
USM continues the season with a three-game road series against conference new arrival FAU. The Golden Eagles and Owls start the series on Saturday, March 22 (doubleheader) and finish on Sunday, March 23.
Following the tilt with the Owls, Southern Miss hosts Arkansas-Pine Bluff in a midweek nonconference doubleheader. The Golden Eagles and Golden Lions square off on Wednesday, March 26.
The softball team returns to Conference USA play with a three-game home series with UTSA on Saturday and Sunday, March 29-30. The series is scheduled for a doubleheader on Saturday with the single game on Sunday.
Southern Miss plays 11 of the next 15 games on the road before finishing up the regular season at home.
USM travels to Troy for a midweek doubleheader on Tuesday, April 1. The Golden Eagles continue the road swing against East Carolina (April 5-6) in a three-game C-USA series in Greenville, N.C.
Southern Miss hosts UAB, who participated in the NCAA Super Regionals last season, in a three-game clash in Hattiesburg on April 12-13. The doubleheader between the two schools starts on Saturday and the finale between the long-time rivals takes place on Sunday.
The Golden Eagles hit the road for Ruston, La. to take on Louisiana Tech on April 18-19. The games will mark the first time the two teams have met on the diamond as Conference USA opponents.
USM returns to Hattiesburg for a single game with Alabama. The Crimson Tide, fresh off of a NCAA Super Regional appearance in 2013, comes to the Southern Miss Softball Complex on Wednesday, April 23.
Co-head coaches Kirsten Voak and Malgradi lead the Golden Eagles against their alma mater Arizona State. The three-game series against the CWS participant will consist of a single game each day Friday through Sunday, April 25-27 in Tempe, Ariz.
Southern Miss closes out the regular season with a three-game C-USA series with newcomer FIU on May 3-4. The Golden Eagles and Panthers take the field on Saturday (doubleheader) and conclude the series on Sunday.
The 2013 Conference USA Tournament will be held May 8-10 in Boca Raton, Fla. on the campus of FAU. The following weekend (May 15-18) begins NCAA Regional action with NCAA Super Regionals held on campus sites on May 22-25. The Women's College World Series returns to Oklahoma City, Okla. on May 29 through June 4.
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