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AU softball team earns NCAA bid
5/10/10

ALFRED, NY – The Alfred University softball team has earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III regional championships. The Saxons (34-6) are seeded fourth in the eight-team region hosted by Ithaca College.

Double-elimination regional play begins Thursday, May 13, and concludes on Monday, May 17. The regional winner advances to the Division III championship tournament. Alfred opens regional play on Thursday at noon against fifth-seeded King’s College in Game 2.

Other first-round matchups Thursday include top-seeded Cortland against eighth-seeded Keuka (Game 1, 10 a.m.); third-seeded Lebanon Valley against sixth-seeded Polytechnic (Game 3, 2 p.m.); and second-seeded Ithaca against seventh-seeded Dickinson (Game 4, 4 p.m.).

On Friday, the loser of Game 1 plays the loser of Game 2 at 10 a.m. in Game 5 and the loser of Game 3 plays the loser of Game 4 at noon in Game 6; the losers of those games are eliminated. The winners of Games 1 and 2 play at 2 p.m. in Game 7 and the winners of Games 3 and 4 play at 4 p.m. in Game 8.

On Saturday, the Game 6 winner and Game 7 loser play at 10 a.m. in Game 9, and the winner of Game 5 and loser of Game 8 play at noon in Game 10, with the losers of those games eliminated. The winners of Game 7 and Game 8 play at 2 p.m. in Game 11; the Game 9 and Game 10 winners play at 4 p.m. in Game 12, with the loser eliminated.

On Sunday, the Game 11 loser and Game 12 winner play at noon in Game 13, with the loser eliminated. The winners of Games 11 and 13 play at 2 p.m. for the regional title in Game 14. If necessary, the Game 14 winner and loser would meet again for the regional crown at noon on Monday, in Game 15.

Alfred, ranked 25th in the nation, is coming off a runner-up finish in the Empire 8 Conference championship tournament. Ithaca won the Empire 8 tournament, hosted by Alfred, and earned the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA championships. AU and Ithaca shared the regular season conference championship. This will mark the first-ever appearance for AU in the NCAAs. The Saxons, under fifth-year coach Gino Olivieri, had played in the ECAC Upstate tournament each of the previous three seasons. Alfred’s 34 wins heading into this weekend’s NCAA regional play are a school single-season record.

Other schools hosting NCAA regionals are: Christopher Newport University, DePauw University, Rhode Island College, Simpson College, Wellesley College, and University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. The NCAA Regional winners advance to play in the NCAA Division III championship tournament May 21-25.

To learn more about the regional championships, visit the NCAA Regional website at: http://bombers.ithaca.edu...