FAYETTEVILLE— The University of Arkansas softball team will open the second half of its Southeastern Conference schedule when it travels to Baton Rouge, La., for a three-game weekend series against the No. 13/15 LSU Tigers.
The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday and a single game on Sunday. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. both days.
Arkansas (24-18, 8-8 SEC) is looking to return to the win column after falling in a pair of games against No. 18/16 Tennessee on Wednesday at Bogle Park. Junior pitcher Layne McGuirt and senior third baseman Sandra Smith led the Razorbacks as the pair combined to go 5-for-10 (.500) with three solo home runs and four RBIs.
As a team this season, Arkansas is batting .253 with 49 home runs while the pitching staff boats a 3.32 ERA with 226 strikeouts. In conference play, the Razorbacks are hitting at a .265 clip as a team.
LSU (33-9, 11-5) comes into this weekend with a No. 13/15 ranking based on the ESPN/USA Softball and USA Today/NFCA polls released Tuesday. The Tigers are on a four-game winning streak after taking defeating Nicholls State 15-2 on Wednesday and sweeping the Bulldogs of Mississippi State at home last weekend in Southeastern Conference play.
LSU leads the all-time series between the two teams 39-8. Last year, Arkansas won the first game of the series 8-7 before falling in the next two games, 10-4 and 10-7. The last time the two met in Baton Rouge, the Tigers swept the Razorbacks in a three-game series.
Offensively, the Tigers are led by senior outfielder Kristen Shortridge. Shortridge paces the team with a .411 average, including a .407 clip in SEC play, 60 hits, 37 runs and a .442 on-base percentage. Sophomore Anissa Young leads the team with eight home runs. As a team, LSU is batting .278 with 26 home runs and 94 stolen bases. Shortridge leads the team with 36 steals.
In the circle, senior right-hander Cody Trahan has a 9-2 record with a 0.96 ERA in 80.0 innings pitched. Rachele Fico paces the squad with a 13-4 record, 1.26 ERA in 100.0 innings pitched. As a staff, LSU has an ERA of 1.26, 276 strikeouts and is limiting opposing batters to a .195 ERA.
This weekend’s games will be broadcast on KXUA Fayetteville (88.3 FM) and ArkansasRazorbacks.com, which will also carry live stats for the LSU series.