THIS WEEK
Fri-Sun, March 16-18
- at South Florida Invitational

After some time away from the softball diamond, the Dartmouth softball team heads to Florida for its annual spring break trip. The Big Green open their nearly two-week trip at the South Florida Invitational. Dartmouth will take on Kent State, Iona, Hartford, North Florida and Florida A&M at the three-day tournament and will play Stetson, North Texas and Florida Gulf Coast in non-conference action next week.

Dartmouth Game Schedule
Friday, March 16 - vs. Kent State, 9:30 a.m.
Friday, March 16- vs. Iona, 11:45 a.m.

Saturday, March 17- vs. Hartford, 9:00 a.m.
Saturday, March 17 - vs. Iona, 11:15 a.m.

Sunday, March 18 - vs. North Florida, 11:15 a.m.
Sunday, March 18 - vs. Florida A&M, 1:30 p.m.

BIG GREEN TIDBITS

Back to Florida  - The Dartmouth softball team will be spending its spring break in Florida for the third consecutive season and for the sixth time in the last eight seasons. Each time the Big Green has traveled to Florida, they have participated in the South Florida Invitational. 

Tournament Time - The Big Green are playing in the second of two season-opening tournaments this weekend. The Big Green opened the 2012 slate at the Coastal Carolina Invitational March 2-4. Dartmouth has played in at least two tournaments in each of the last six seasons. In 2008 and 2009, the Big Green traveled to three tournaments while in 2005 they only played in one tournament.

Welcome to the Big Leagues - In Dartmouth's season-opening tournament at Coastal Carolina four freshmen got to see action in their first collegiate games. Megan Averitt (Alameda, Calif.) started each of Dartmouth's games in left field, while Kristen Rumley (Katy, Texas) saw time in the circle against Coastal Carolina and Nebraska-Omaha. Mariah Claw (Chinle, Ariz.) pinch ran against Coastal Carolina and Rachel Hein (Olathe, Kan.) faced two batters against Nebraska-Omaha.

Curosh Opens the Season Strong - Sophomore Kara Curosh (Munster, Ind.) had a strong opening weekend at the plate for the Big Green. In the season-opening win against Saint Peters, she was 3-of-3 from the plate and was 1-of-3 against Coastal and Nebraska-Omaha. For the weekend, the shortstop was 5-of-9 with five putouts.

Curosh and Rumley Named to Ivy League Honor Roll - Kara Curosh (Munster, Ind.) and Kristen Rumley (Katy, Texas) earned spots on the Ivy League honor roll on Tuesday March 6 for their efforts in the season-opening tournament at Coastal Carolina. It is the first honor roll appearance for both Curosh and Rumley this season.

Hot Pitching  - The Big Green had some great pitching in its opening weekend. Dartmouth pitchers senior Hillary Barker (Duvall, Wash.), and freshmen Kristen Rumley (Katy, Texas) and Rachel Hein (Olathe, Kan.) each saw some time in the circle.  Barker pitched a gem of a game against St. Peters going the distance and allowing just one run on four hits. She also added four strikeouts. Against Nebraska-Omaha, she pitched 3.2 innings and also added four strikeouts.  Rumley saw her first collegiate action against Coastal Carolina. In her first appearance she went the distance and had nine strikeouts against the hard-hitting Chanticleers. She also added three strikeouts in 2.1 innings of work against Nebraska-Omaha for a weekend total of 12 strikeouts.  Hein faced two batters against Nebraska-Omaha for her first action in the Dartmouth Green and white.

Streaking - The Big Green have several players who enter the weekend on hitting streaks. Kara Curosh (Munster, Ind.), Dartmouth's top hitter through the early season is batting .556 and is on a three-game hitting streak. Morgan Wharton (Binghamton, N.Y.) also sports a three-game hitting streak and is Dartmouth's second-best hitter at .364.

Road Warriors - It isn't uncommon for schools in the Northeast to spend long parts of the opening month of the season on the road and the Big Green are no exception. Dartmouth will play 22 games, over half of its schedule, on the road before opening the home schedule on April 6.  Additionally, the Big Green will take up residence in the Sunshine state in March. Dartmouth makes its third consecutive appearance and sixth appearance in the last eight seasons at the USF Invitational and will play six games in that tournament. Dartmouth also will take on the likes of Stetson, North Florida and Florida Gulf Coast in non-conference games. Not a bad way to spend spring break!

Rookies on Board - The Big Green welcome a six-member freshman class this season. The class features players from all over the country highlighted by two players from California. Joining the Dartmouth softball team are Megan Averitt (Alameda, Calif.), Mariah Claw (Chinle, Ariz.), Rachel Hein (Olathe, Kan.), Sawyer Hulbert (Foster City, Calif.), Kristen Rumley (Katy, Texas) and Rhiannon Saucedo (Las Cruces, N.M.).

Welcome to Dartmouth, Coach Thomason - Assistant coach Marie Thomason is the newest addition to the Dartmouth softball family, joining the team less than a month ago. Thomason comes to Hanover from Virginia where she held assistant coaching positions at Virginia Wesleyan and Norfolk State.

A Look at the Competition
Kent State
- The Golden Flashes enter the weekend with a 9-11 record and a 7-7 neutral site record after going 3-2 at the Maryland Tournament last weekend. Kent State will be taking on its second Ivy League opponent this season after defeating Princeton, 9-7, last weekend. Jessica Blanton leads Kent State from the plate with a .373 batting average with six runs and 19 hits on the season. Lauren Mokler isn't far behind with a .364 average with eight runs and 16 hits to go along with eight RBIs and four doubles.  In the circle, Emma Johnson has a 2.14 ERA and has made 14 appearances with 11 starts, playing nine complete games. She leads the pitching staff with 84 strikeouts on the season. Danielle Abernathy and Lauren McNeil have also spent time in the circle this season. Abernathy has a 4.88 ERA while McNeil carries a 5.15 ERA.

Iona - Iona enters the weekend with a 7-6 record after going, 3-2 at the UMBC Tournament March 2-4. The Gaels will take on Northern Illinois and Central Florida in non-conference action on March 14 before opening action at the South Florida Invitational. The Gaels, the two-time defending MAAC Champion, are in the hunt for their third consecutive title this season. Jodi Petersen and Chelsea Sheehan lead the Gaels from the plate with a .400 hitting percentage. Petersen has two runs on 10 hits with two RBI while Sheehan has three runs on eight hits and has been walked a team-high four times. In the circle, pitchers Sarah Jackson, Alyssa Maiese and Carly Argyle have each seen action this season. Maiese leads the way with 31 strikeouts and Jackson has 28 on the season.

Hartford - The Hawks enter tournament play with a 2-6 record after going 2-3 at the George Mason Invitational last weekend. Hartford opened the season 0-3 and picked up its first win of the season with a come-from-behind, 5-4, win over George Mason last weekend. Peyton Fisher leads the way at the plate and is batting .407 with four runs on 11 hits and four RBIs. She also has tallied a double, triple and home run this season. In the circle, Siera Sheehan leads the way with a 2.96 ERA and a 2-1 record on the season. She's pitched two complete games and has a team-best 13 strikeouts. Kaitlyn Meade is the only other pitcher on staff to throw a complete game while Eve Clausen and Ana Alberti have each seen action in relief.

North Florida - North Florida has a 12-12 record this season entering the weekend. The Osprey's will take on Boston University on Thursday before opening tournament action. North Florida will be participating in its fifth in-season tournament at the South Florida Invitational.  Alyson Bailey and Jackie Reese lead the Osprey offense with .359 and .358 batting averages, respectively. Bailey leads the squad with 15 runs on 28 hits with nine RBI. Reese isn't far behind with 14 runs on 29 hits with 13 RBI and three triples. Kaylie Wallace is North Florida's ace of the pitching staff and has a 1.66 ERA. She has made 15 appearances with eight starts and one complete game. Ashley Brown and Kayla Goff have also seen action.  The entire pitching staff has a knack for strikeouts with each of the pitchers registering at least 49 strikeouts this season.

Florida A&M - The Rattlers enter the weekend tournament with a 9-14 record after posting a 5-1 record at the Rebel games last weekend. Florida A&M's lone loss last weekend came against Lehigh. The Rattlers defeated Sacred Heart, Detroit-Mercy, Holy Cross and Ivy League foe, Yale. Tera Gainer and Jasmin Donaldson are the two Rattlers who are batting above .300. Gainer leads the way with a .392 average with 11 runs on 20 hits. She also leads the team with four doubles. She also has 10 RB and two triples. Donaldson has 12 runs on 23 hits with two doubles and three triples. Gainer and Donaldson are also proficient in stealing bases. Gainer is 6-of-6 this season and Donaldson is 10-of-14.  Jenn Lindsey and Whitney Robinson have seen the most time in the circle for the Rattlers. Lindsey has a 3-5 record with 14 appearances and five complete games while Robinson has a 4-5 record with 14 appearances. Lindsey leads the staff with 28 strikeouts and a 3.00 ERA.  

Dartmouth Set to Open Dartmouth Softball Park in 2012 - Dartmouth Athletics will be opening the Dartmouth Softball Park this season. The $3.1 million project will include wrap around seating for 400 fans, sunken dugouts, bullpens, batting cages, press box, scoreboard and an artificial FieldTurf playing surface with superior drainage capacity. The team will use a locker room, training room and public restrooms that are already located within the Chase Field Complex. Take a look at Dartmouth's construction photo gallery here.

Captain, My Captain - Seniors Meghan Everett (Flemington, N.J.) and Molly Khalil (Seal Beach, Calif.) and junior Hillary Hubert (Grant Park, Ill.) will captain the 2012 softball squad this season. Check DartmouthSports.com for "Captains Corner" throughout the season.

Skipper Hanson Back for Second Season - Head coach Rachel Hanson returns for her second season as head skipper of the Dartmouth softball team. Hanson posted a 17-22 record in her first season and coached the Big Green to within two games of the North Division title. Assistant coach Lindsay Foreman returns for her second season while Marie Thomason joins the staff this season.

Follow the Big Green Softball Team on Facebook - Make sure to keep up with the latest information Dartmouth softball team by "liking" their page on Facebook, you can find the page by searching Dartmouth College Softball.

Up Next
Wed., Mar. 21
- at Stetson (DH), 4:00 p.m.
Thur., Mar. 22
-vs. North Texas, 3:00 p.m. (Game played in Fort Myers, Fla.)
Thur., Mar. 22
- at Florida Gulf Coast, 5:30 p.m.
Sat., March 24
- at Boston College (DH), 1 p.m.