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    Natalie Hernandez leads the Flames offense with a .467 batting average.
     
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    Feb. 14, 2013

    CHICAGO – The UIC softball team (0-5) travels to Tempe, Ariz., for the Littlewood Classic. Arizona State plays host to the event and the Flames begin competition Friday at 9:15 a.m. (CT) against UNI. In addition to UNI, UIC faces Michigan State twice, Arizona State and Illinois State.

    SCOUTING THE FLAMES

    UIC opened its 2013 season at the Hotel Encanto Invitational in Las Cruces, N.M. … the team compiled an 0-5 record on the weekend … they fell to Nebraska 14-5 and 13-4, before taking the Huskers to extra innings during the final outing, but dropped 4-3 … host team, New Mexico State outlasted UIC 8-1 and 11 during the weekend … Natalie Hernandez (.467), Kara Komp (.313) and Coryn Schmit (.308) lead the team offensively.

    The Last Meeting
    Michigan State11  
    UIC35
    March 17, 2012
    Bloomington, IN

    SCOUTING THE PANTHERS

    UNI enters the Littlewood Classic with a 2-3 record … UNI played host to the UNI-Dome Classic in Cedar Falls, Iowa, to open the season … the team defeated North Dakota State (5-2) and fellow Horizon League team Green Bay 8-2 … the Panthers fell to Alabama (8-1), Illinois (8-0) and Drake 6-0 … freshman Kristin Lock leads the team with a .364 batting average with two runs, four hits and four RBI … sophomore Julia Hunter (.308) has three runs, four hits, four doubles and one RBI … another underclassman, freshman Micalla Rettinger is hitting at .286 with three runs, four hits, two doubles and three RBI …UIC holds a 3-7 record against UNI … the teams last met in 1996, where the Panthers won 6-2.


     

     

    SCOUTING THE SPARTANS

    Michigan State holds a 1-3 record after competing in the Lead-Off Classic in DeLand, Fla. … the Spartans split decisions with Stetson, 4-1 and 6-1, respectively … Michigan State dropped 11-3 and 12-5 to South Carolina … senior Kylene Hopkins leads the team with a .571 batting average, with two runs, eight hits and two RBI … sophomore Ellie Stoffer is hitting at .400 with one run, four hits, including three doubles and three RBI … junior Sarah Bowling holds a .357 batting average with two runs, five hits, with one homerun and five RBI … UIC hold a 3-2 all-time edge over the Spartans … UIC most recently fell 11-3 to the Big Ten team during the 2012 season.

    SCOUTING THE SUN DEVILS

    Host team Arizona State enters the tournament with a flawless 7-0 record after playing host to the Kajikawa Classic … the Sun Devils allowed only two runs in the initial seven games … Arizona State defeated Boise State (10-0), Bradley (3-0), Western Michigan (7-0), Kentucky (8-1), Indiana (8-0), Cal State Northridge (6-1) and New Mexico, 3-0 … sophomore Elizabeth Coporuscio has a .571 batting average with eight runs, 12 hits, including four doubles and a triple with four RBI … junior Cheyenne Coyle (.474) has compiled eight tuns, with nine hits, five homeruns and 10 RBI … senior Sam Parlich holds a .364 average with four runs, eight hits, one homerun and four RBI … sophomore Amber Freeman (.316) has four runs, six hits, including one double, three homeruns and six RBI … junior pitcher Dallas Escobedo is 4-0 and has blanked 39 batters … the Sun Devils hold a 2-0 record over UIC … the teams last met during the 2007 and Arizona State won 6-2.

    SCOUTING THE REDBIRDS

    Illinois State enters the Littlewood Classic with a 2-3 record … the Redbirds competed in the Getterman Classic in Waco, Texas … the Redbirds dropped the opening three games to Sam Houston State (8-6), Baylor (5-0) and Northern Illinois, 3-1 … they later defeated Sam Houston State, 5-4 and Baylor 8-0 … the team is led by upperclassmen Nichelle Harrison (redshirt junior), Laura Canopy (junior) and Elizabeth Kay (senior) … Harrison holds a .313 average with two runs, five hits and one RBI … Canopy (.308) has five runs with four hits and two RBI … Kay (.278) has two runs, five hits, including one double and one homerun.

    HOMECOMING FOR HEELEY

    Junior Courtney Heeley returns home for the Littlewood Classic … Heeley was born in Phoenix, Ariz., on March 18 … Heeley was a four-sport athlete at Greenway High School in Glendale, Ariz. … in addition to softball, she played soccer, badminton and volleyball … Heeley is the youngest of five children … she has three sisters, Mary, Valerie and Natalie … she has one brother David “Buddy” … “Buddy” also lives in Chicago and can be found in the Second City scene, which has housed several big-name comedians such as John Candy, Chris Farley, Stephen Colbert and Tina Fey … Heeley is currently enrolled as a marketing major.

    HORIZON LEAGUE PRESEASON POLL

    Loyola received 48 points and six first-place votes to secure the top spot in the poll. … UIC edged Valparaiso by two points to place the Crusaders third with 37 points and one first-place vote … Youngstown State and Green Bay claimed fourth (30 points) and fifth place (22), respectively … Cleveland State placed sixth with 20 points, while Wright State and Detroit rounded out the poll with 19 and 9 points, in that order.

    FOLLOWING THE FLAMES

    Can’t make it to every game? Social media makes it easy for fans to follow the Flames from anywhere! Twitter: @UICSoftball … Facebook: UIC Flames Softball … Live Stats can be accessed via www.uicflames.com through the schedule link on the softball page.

    --UIC—