Softball season is well under way, and conference play is quickly approaching. With the Lady Vol Softball team starting SEC play in March, here are five key series to look out for:
SEC opener - Texas A&M (March 13th-15th)
The Lady Vols will travel to College Station for a three-game series with the Aggies to kick off conference play. They will be looking to get off to a strong start to their SEC schedule. The Lady Vols have six consecutive scheduled home games before the road trip, so they may be able to build up some momentum. Tennessee was victorious in two of the three games between the Vols and the Aggies last season, all of which took place in Knoxville.
Home SEC opener - Alabama (March 20th-22nd)
The Crimson Tide come to Sherri Parker Lee Stadium for Tennessee’s first home series on the conference schedule. In 2019, the Lady Vols never faced the Alabama team that appeared in the Women’s College World Series, finishing with an overall record of 60-10. The last time the two teams battled it out was in Tuscaloosa in 2018, with Tennessee winning two of the three games played in late April.
2019 Super Regionals rematch – Florida (April 3rd-5th)
Tennessee will be looking for revenge in the first week of April when the Gators make the trip north to Knoxville. While the Lady Vols took two of three games during the regular season in Gainesville last year, Florida would eventually get the last laugh, ending Tennessee’s season in walk-off fashion in the NCAA Super Regionals. The team will attempt to wash that sour taste out of their mouth and defend their home turf against their conference rival.
Senior Day – Ole Miss (April 24th-26th)
When the Rebels come to town, five members of the Lady Vol softball team will be playing what could be their last series at Sherri Parker Lee stadium. If the team does not host a postseason series, this will be the last time that the senior Lady Vols will get to give their all for Tennessee for a home crowd in Knoxville. One of the few series that Tennessee dropped last season was in Oxford, where they lost two of three.
Final tune-up – Arkansas (May 1st-3rd)
The Lady Vols will head to Fayetteville for the last series of the regular season. This will serve as a final opportunity for the team to make adjustments and a huge chance to grab momentum heading into the SEC tournament. The Razorbacks came to Knoxville in late March last season, only coming out victorious in one of three matchups. Depending on how the season goes up until this point, there is a possibility that this could be an important weekend in determining the final seeding of the SEC tournament.
Tennessee finished with a 14-10 record in conference play in 2019 and came up just one game shy of punching its ticket to the Women’s College World Series. The Lady Vols will attempt to build on their success from last season and look to take that next step that gets them to the biggest stage in college softball.