UNC Softball Weekly Release
This Week's Action: The UNC women's softball team (4-19 overall) will be in action at home as they host CU-Colorado Springs on Wednesday at 2 p.m. in doubleheader action. The Bears will stay busy this Friday and Saturday as they host Utah Valley State for a pair of doubleheaders. UNC will play UVSC on Friday at 2 p.m. and at 11 a.m. on Saturday. CU-Colorado Springs comes into Wednesday's action with a record of 23-8. Utah Valley State has an overall mark of 15-10 going into this week's action.
Bears Nab National Honors: Junior Whitney Platten and senior Erin Peterson have each been named NCAA Division I-II Independent Players of the Week the last two weeks. Platten earned the latest honor for her school-record breaking effort against Regis. Platten tallied five hits in five at-bats in a 7-6 nine-inning loss to the Rangers. Peterson earned her national honors the week before as she dismantled the competition at the North Texas Tournament in Denton, Texas.
Peterson Leads the Way: Senior Erin Peterson is putting together a stellar final campaign as a UNC Bear softball performer. Peterson leads the team in hitting (.475 average), runs scored (17), hits (29), triples (2), home runs (7), runs batted in (21) and slugging percentage (.967).
Platten Gives 'Extra' Effort: Junior Whitney Platten is off to a good start batting .371 in her first season with the Bears. Platten has 26 hits and 11 of those hits have been for extra bases. Platten has tallied seven doubles and four home runs in her 21 games of action.
Boyer Comes Through in the Clutch: Senior transfer Brooke Boyer has struggled at the plate this season but has come through when the Bears have needed her the most. Boyer has 13 hits in 56 at-bats but but has 14 RBI to rank third on the team.
Bears Take 2nd: The Bears placed second overall at the Mean Green/Wells Fargo Classic by winning two contests. The Bears defeated Harvard and New Mexico in the tournament and went 2-3 in the three-day event. UNC tied with Harvard for second place but won the tiebreaker based on a head-to-head matchup.
Four Members of All-Tourney Team: The UNC Bears had four players earn All-Tournament honors at the Mean Green/Wells Fargo Classic in Denton, Texas. Junior Whitney Platten, junior Nicole Martinez, freshman Casey Hogue and senior Erin Peterson all earned all-tourney team honors.
Miller Leads the Pitchers: Junior pitcher Stephani Miller is quickly becoming the ace of the Bears pitching staff. Miller is 4-6 on the season with a 3.83 ERA. The rest of the pitching staff is a combined 0-13 with a 5.02 ERA.
Bears Return to Division I Status: This season marks the return of Division I softball for the Bears. On May 10, 2002 the UNC Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve a move for the UNC intercollegiate athletics program to NCAA Division I. The 2002-03 sports year marked the last season for the Bears in the North Central Conference and the NCAA Division II level. This season the Bears begin a four-year "reclassification" period before officially becoming a Division I school in 2007. Over the next four years, UNC will be unable to compete in NCAA postseason competition. UNC will be competing as an independent during the 2003-04 school year and will hopefully find conference affiliation before the end of the reclassification period.
Head Coach: Linda Witt is in her fourth season as the head coach of the UNC softball squad. During Witt's tenure as the Bears' leader she has compiled a career record of 59-58 overall entering the 2004 season. Witt will be charged with taking the Bears back to Division I softball, a level she is very familiar with at UNC. "We are going back to Division I and it's exciting because I was a part of the tradition as a player and now I have the opportunity to do it as a coach," Witt said. Witt was named the Co-Coach of the Year in 2002 after leading the Bears to a 28-18 overall mark and an 11-5 record in league action. Witt has compiled an overall mark of 41-36 in two full seasons as the Bears' head coach. Witt played for the Bears' during her college days and led the squad to the NCAA championship game in 1978 before falling to UCLA, 2-0, in the title contest. A 1978 graduate of UNC, Linda Witt spent 20 years as a teacher and coach at University High School (UNC Laboratory School) in Greeley.