Five non-conference tournaments and a full slate of 32 home games highlight the 2014 Stetson University softball schedule, which was released on Tuesday.
The Hatters open the 2014 campaign by hosting three consecutive tournaments at Patricia Wilson Field. On Feb. 7-9, the Hatters will welcome Michigan State and Rhode Island to DeLand for the Stetson Lead-Off Classic.
The following weekend (Feb. 14-16), Stetson will host the Hatter Invitational with Bethune-Cookman, Campbell, Delaware, and Elon providing the competition.
Stetson's third tournament, the Hatter Classic (Feb. 21-23), will feature a total of six games in a double-round robin format among Dartmouth, Drexel, and Stetson.
The Hatters will journey south to Orlando for their fourth tournament of the season, the UCF Spring Fling (Feb. 28-Mar. 1). Stetson will face Princeton, the College of Charleston, UT-Martin, and SIU-Edwardsville.
Memphis and South Dakota will travel to DeLand for the Hatters' final tournament, the Stetson Classic, on Mar. 7-9.
Other non-conference games for Stetson include a home doubleheader vs. Marist (Mar. 20), a single game against Bethune-Cookman (Mar. 26), and a home-and-home series with UCF (Apr. 9 in DeLand, Apr. 22 in Orlando).
The Hatters will get an early jump on Atlantic Sun play with a mid-March, home midweek series against 2013 conference champion USC Upstate (Mar. 11-12). For the second year in a row, all nine A-Sun series will be played in a three-game, two-day format.
Opponents for Stetson's other home A-Sun series include Florida Gulf Coast (Mar. 29-30), Lipscomb (Apr. 18-19), and Jacksonville (Apr. 26-27). The Hatters will play five A-Sun series on the road, including three-game sets at Mercer (Mar. 15-16), ETSU (Mar. 22-23), Northern Kentucky (Apr. 5-6), Kennesaw State (Apr. 12-13), and North Florida (Apr. 30-May 1).
The Atlantic Sun Conference Championship will once again be hosted by Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn., May 7-10. The top six teams in the regular season will qualify for the postseason tournament, with the champion receiving the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The title game will be broastcast live by ESPN3.
The Hatters went 31-22 in 2013, set a school-record with 45 home runs, and averaged 4.55 runs per game. Head coach Frank Griffin returns for his 18th season.