No. 20 UCF Travels to Jacksonville

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#20 UCF at UNF
Wednesday, March 17 | 4:00 p.m.
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#20 UCF at UNF
Wednesday, March 17 | 6:00 p.m.
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ORLANDO – The No. 20 ranked UCF softball team will look to stay hot as the Knights head to Jacksonville on Wednesday for a mid-week doubleheader with UNF. Game one is slated for a 4:00 p.m. first pitch with game two set for 6:00 p.m.

The games will be broadcasted live. Fans can watch here.

The Ospreys (9-9) are coming off a series win over Jacksonville University. UNF won game one, 3-2 in eight innings thanks to an RBI double from Rebecca Koskey. JU took the next game, 2-0 and the Ospreys bounced back in the rubber match on Sunday to win 1-0.

Sophomore Shannon Glover is leading the team with a .350 average and a team-high 21 hits and seven doubles with 10 RBI while Kayla McGory tops the team with 11 RBI and owns a team-high eight walks. She is hitting .273 and has seven stolen bases.

In the circle, UNF is led by Morgan Clausen and Halle Arends, who have combined for an 8-5 mark with 77 strikeouts. Clausen has a 2.85 ERA while Arends owns a 1.24 ERA.

The Knights are 14-5 all-time against the Ospreys after having beat them earlier this year at the UCF Softball Complex, 8-0. More on how that game went here.
Following a week that saw the Knights go 5-0, including taking down then No. 2 Arizona, the Knights are climbing in several national polls. The USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Coaches' Poll was released on Tuesday and the Knights checked in at No. 20. The Knights, who were predicted to finish first in the American Athletic Conference Preseason Coaches' Poll in early January, are the sole AAC team to make an appearance in the top 25. The Knights were also ranked No. 15 in the JWOS Top 25 Poll, No. 20 in the D1 Softball poll and No. 21 in the USA Softball/ESPN rankings.

UCF senior Gianna Mancha was named the Wilson/NFCA National Pitcher of the Week on Tuesday after posting one of the best weeks in program history. Mancha was called on to start three times over the week, guiding the Knights to three victories, including over then No. 2 Arizona. Mancha tossed 20 scoreless innings and allowed just seven hits and no runs while striking out 30. On Monday, Mancha was named the American Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week for the second week in a row. After Monday, Mancha is 7-1, owns a team-low 0.85 season ERA and has 63 strikeouts in 49.2 innings pitched. Over her last 26 innings pitched since March 6, Mancha has not allowed an earned run. The Wilson/NFCA National Pitcher of the Week award marks the fourth in program history as Shelby Turnier won the award three times (Feb. 17, 2015, March 31, 2015 and April 7, 2015). Stephanie Best was also named the NFCA Player of the Week on March 19, 2003.

Australia native and UCF senior Georgia Blair has been on an absolute tear to begin the season. Heading into Wednesday's doubleheader against UNF, Blair is slashing .429/.522/.911 with a team-high eight home runs, 23 RBI and 51 total bases. She has accounted for 24 percent of the UCF offense to begin the season. In 2020, Blair became the fastest Knight to ever get to six home runs, needing just 15 games to do so. This year, she did it in eight games. Blair has safely reached base at least one time in all 16 of the Knights game this season.

UCF Softball has a new all-time wins leader in Alea White. White secured career win No. 81 in the series finale over New Mexico State, passing Shelby Turnier as the winningest pitcher in program history. On the mound, White was lights out in her record-setting performance. She was perfect through four and threw a complete game, allowing no earned runs on just four hits while striking out eight. 

Stay tuned to UCF Softball on Facebook (/UCFSoftball), Twitter (@UCF_Softball) and Instagram (@UCF.Softball) for the latest on the UCF Softball team.

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