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May 01, 2006

Eagles to take on Saint Joseph's in round one,
Enter GLVC Tournament as second seed

EVANSVILLE, Ind.—The University of Southern Indiana softball team opens the GLVC Tournament against Saint Joseph's College Friday at Noon at the EastSide Centre in East Peoria, Illinois.

USI (35-14, 17-5 GLVC) is the second seed in the tournament, while the Pumas (25-15, 8-8 GLVC) are the seventh seed. The GLVC Tournament is a double-elimination tournament that features eight teams and at least 14 games, 15 if necessary. Ten games are played on Friday, three on Saturday, and the championship on Sunday.

This marks the first meeting of the season between USI and Saint Joseph's after their regular-season doubleheader cancelled due to inclement weather conditions.

The Screaming Eagles finished the regular season by winning 21 of their last 23 games and moved into the second slot in last week's NCAA II Great Lakes Regional rankings—the new regional rankings are due out Wednesday.

USI has finished third in its previous two trips to the GLVC Tournament and has won at least one game in the post-season in each of the last five seasons.

However, the first round has been something of an obstacle in recent years for the Eagles. USI has lost in the first round the last three seasons and have had to come through the loser's bracket. The last time USI won its first-round game was 2002 when it came to within one win of the GLVC Championship.

If the Eagles defeat Saint Joseph's, they will play in the winner's bracket Friday at 4 p.m. Possible match-ups in the second round include the sixth-seed, Northern Kentucky University, and the third-seed, Lewis University. If the Eagles win their first two games, they will compete Saturday at 3 p.m. for the right to advance to Sunday's championship game, which starts at 1 p.m.

A loss in the first round would mean that the Eagles play Friday at 2 p.m. against the loser of the four-five match-up, which features the University of Indianapolis and the University of Missouri-Rolla. The second round of the loser's bracket is Friday at 6 p.m., while the third and fourth rounds of the loser's bracket are slated for Saturday at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., respectively.

The other first-round match-up includes the top-seed, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, and the eighth-seed, the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. USI was 7-5 against the GLVC Tournament field during the regular season.

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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