The softball team will face a tough schedule as it looks to claim its 10th Mid-American Conference Championship and the first since 2002.
The schedule includes five 40-plus win teams and 12 that finished at or above .500 last season.
“We’re pretty excited about the schedule that we have this season,” assistant coach Jenna Alexander said. “We’re playing a lot of tough competition. That’s going to test us, and we’re excited to see where we’re at and where we’re going.”
Among those 40-win teams is South Florida on March 6. The Bulls finished last season as a Women’s College World Series qualifier and ended No. 8 in the nation according to the USA Today/NFCA Coaches’ Poll.
Central Michigan will also travel to play a doubleheader against the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Champion Bethune-Cookman University and a game against Atlantic-10 Champion Massachusetts.
“They are all quality programs, and we’ll see them in Florida on our spring break trip,” Alexander said. “That’ll be a good test for us being down there for 10 days and we’ll be excited to play together for the first time and see how we stack up against them.”
The Chippewas will travel to play Big Ten Champion Michigan and fellow Big Ten members Michigan State and Indiana.
“We play all three of them every year and always have a good matchup with them,” Alexander said. “It’s something we definitely look forward to.”
CMU will have its rematch from the MAC Championship game against Miami (Ohio) on April 27-28 at Margo Jonker Stadium.
Regular season MAC Champion Ball State will be playing a doubleheader on April 26 in Mount Pleasant. Bowling Green, Toledo, Buffalo and Kent State will also be traveling to face the Chippewas during the MAC schedule.
“We always play for a good crowd at Margo Jonker Stadium, and any chance to play at home is something to look forward to,” Alexander said. “We like to be able to play them (Ball State and Miami (Ohio)) at home. Last season, we went there, and we’d like to have a different result.”
CMU will open the season at Margo Jonker Stadium on April 3 against Detroit.