Softball Preview: Spartan Classic

Softball Preview:  Spartan Classic

Spartanburg, S.C. – The USC Upstate softball team begins its 2019 season this weekend hosting the Youngstown State Penguins, Towson Tigers, Miami (OH) RedHawks and East Carolina Pirates at Cyrill Stadium as part of the Spartan Classic.

The Spartans open their season on Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. versus Youngstown State followed by a 3 p.m. matchup with Towson. USC Upstate closes out the Spartan Classic on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. against Miami (OH) and 3 p.m. versus East Carolina.

The Spartans finished last season with a 35-19 overall record and 10-6 mark in the ASUN. USC Upstate begins its first season in the Big South Conference after spending the last 11 years in the ASUN. The Spartans advanced to the ASUN Softball Championship game for the fourth straight season and were led by five all-conference performers including seniors Brittany Case and Christina Biggerstaff.

Head coach Chris Hawkins, who is entering his 25th season at USC Upstate and has 894 wins during his career, returns 10 letterwinners from last year's team highlighted by seven starters. Along with the 10 returning players, the Spartans welcome 12 newcomers to the 2019 roster.

USC Upstate leads the all-time series over Youngstown State 2-1 and Towson 1-0 but trail 1-0 against East Carolina. The Spartans are facing Miami (OH) for the first time in program history.

Fans can follow the action on www.upstatespartans.com via live stats. Saturday's game versus Youngstown State and the tournament finale against East Carolina on Sunday are being streamed via paid subscription on ESPN+. Updates will also be posted on the USC Upstate softball Twitter page (@UpstateSoftball).

The Spartans remain at Cyrill Stadium next weekend, February 15-17, to host Bowling Green, Boston, Connecticut and Virginia Tech in the Upstate Classic.

Follow USC Upstate softball on Facebook (UpstateAthletics), Twitter (@UpstateSoftball), Instagram (@upstatespartans), YouTube (USCUpstateAthletics) and text/e-mail alerts (www.upstatespartans.com/list-signup).