North Adams, MA- The MCLA Trailblazers have earned the #5 seed in this week's MASCAC Championships and will open up play on Wednesday when they head to #4 Fitchburg State for a 3:30 opening round tilt. The Falcons defeated the Trailblazers twice in the regular season and the winner will move on to the double elimination portion of the tournament which begins Friday.
Bridgewater State earned the number one seed in the upcoming MASCAC Softball Tournament after claiming a share of the league's regular season title.
Starting with the first round on Wednesday, April 30, third seed Westfield State hosts sixth seed Worcester State then fourth seed Fitchburg State entertains fifth seed MCLA both at 3:30 pm. The winner of those games moves on to the quarterfinals on Friday, May 3 with the winner of Fitchburg State/MCLA facing top seed Bridgewater State while the winner of Westfield State/Worcester State will play second seed Framingham State with both at 4 pm.
The games will continue Saturday at Bridgewater State beginning at 11 am with the semifinals and then the championship on Sunday with the winner earning the MASCAC's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
Claiming a share of the MASCAC Regular Season title and the top spot in the tournament, Bridgewater State finished with a 12-2 mark in league play. For the Bears, Samantha Mulcahy was in the top five of the league in several categories, including .411 batting average, .481 on-base percentage, 28 runs scored and 16 stolen bases. She also collected six doubles and 15 RBI.
Earning the other share of the MASCAC Regular Season title is Framingham State who is the second seed after going 12-2 during conference action. In the circle, Kelsi Gunarathne led the league in strikeouts with 103, complete games with 16, shutouts with two while also finishing second in wins with 11 and third in ERA with 2.51.
Landing the third seed is Westfield State. The Owls were 8-6 during the league clip. Caitlin Hughes finished the regular season batting .359 with 37 hits, including seven doubles and a home run. She also tallied 19 RBI and 11 runs scored.
Fitchburg State takes home the fourth seed after going 8-6 during MASCAC play. For the Falcons, McKenzie Lambert ended the regular season in the top five of several league categories, including batting average (.407), slugging percentage (.715), doubles (15), triples (4), home runs (5), RBI (35) and runs scored (40).
Sitting in the fifth spot is MCLA who were 7-7 during the conference season. Kaitlyn Berghela collected three triples and 12 stolen bases which were the second-most this season in the MASCAC. She also registered a .371 batting average, .533 slugging percentage with 25 runs scored and 17 RBI.
Rounding out the tournament field is Worcester State who was also 7-7 this season. Kaiulani Ennis sat atop the league in home runs with five while also having the second-best slugging percentage at .606 and finishing sixth in RBI (26), hits (43) and batting average (.394).
During last year's tournament, second seed Framingham State won their second straight MASCAC Tournament title with a 1-0 win over third seed Westfield State. The Rams moved on to the NCAA Tournament with the league's automatic bid.