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Ohio's Taylor Saxton celebrates after she scores another run in the March 25, 2017, game against Toledo at the Ohio Softball Stadium. (HANNAH RUHOFF | FOR THE POST)

Softball: MAC holds some challengers for Ohio's top spot

Ohio started off Mid-American Conference play with a three-game weekend sweep of Toledo this past weekend. 

The Bobcats are riding a nine-game winning streak and have a 22-6 record overall. Ohio is tied atop the MAC standings with a 3-0 conference record. 

Ohio also leads the conference in hitting, pitching and fielding with a team .305 average, 2.37 ERA and .972 fielding percentage, respectively.

Ohio also boasts the best pitcher in conference in Savannah Jo Dorsey. Dorsey leads the conference with a 13-3 record, a 1.28 ERA, 145 strikeouts, 12 complete games and an opponent’s batting average of .142. 

Alex Day is Ohio’s leading hitter, as well as one of the top hitters in the conference. Her 39 hits this season are fourth-best in the conference, and her .415 average is good for seventh. Day is also fourth in the conference in runs scored with 24.

Despite having all these impressive statistics including holding the honor of being the preseason favorite to win the conference, the Bobcats still have some teams looking to challenge them this season.

The biggest challenge right now is defending MAC champion Miami. The rival RedHawks are also 3-0 in conference play, which puts them in a tie with Ohio atop the East division and the entire MAC. Miami is the hottest team in the conference, as the team is riding an 11-game winning streak, which has improved its overall record to 17-11.

Miami is being led by the fourth best offense in the MAC with a team batting average of .292, and the fifth best defense with a .962 fielding percentage.

The Bobcats and RedHawks will play this season April 28-29 in Athens.

Ohio’s other tough challenge will come from Central Michigan. The Chippewas are 17-8 overall this year and tied atop the West division of the MAC with a 2-1 conference record.

Central Michigan is the second best offense in the MAC with a .301 average. The Chippewas are the third best pitching staff in the conference with a 2.48 ERA, and the fourth-best defense with a .963 fielding percentage.

Central Michigan’s Rachael Knapp is second in the conference with a 10-4 record, 1.70 ERA, shutouts with five and strikeouts with 133. She ranks third in the MAC with 98.2 innings pitched and a .207 opponent’s batting average.

Central Michigan’s Allison Curtis is ninth in the conference hitting .395, and she is tied for the lead in triples with three.

The Bobcats will not play the Chippewas during the regular season, but it could be an interesting potential matchup in the MAC tournament.

@JimmyFarmer13

jf744915@ohio.edu    

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