Softball looks to stay on top of MAC West

By Brian Thomas

NIU’s softball team is looking to continue its strong play in the MAC this weekend at home against Bowling Green and Toledo at Mary M. Bell Field.

The Huskies (18-19 overall, 8-3 MAC) will play a doubleheader against Bowling Green today at 1 p.m.

They will then play two games against Toledo, the first at 2 p.m. Saturday and the second at 1 p.m. Sunday.

The Huskies are coming off a 2-1 homestand last weekend against Ohio and Akron, sweeping Akron in a doubleheader on Sunday.

The key for the Huskies last weekend was strong pitching and defense, as well as timely hits. They will look to continue that trend this weekend.

“We need to continue to do the things that we have been doing well,” said head coach Lindsay Chouinard. “We have been pitching better and playing better defense lately, and we need to keep that up. We also need to keep getting the timely hits in big situations.”

Offensively, freshman Stephanie Tofft continues to produce. She is looking to extend her school-record hitting streak to 28 games.

Tofft leads the Huskies in hits during MAC play with 17, and has a .423 batting average.

Junior Carly Norton has also been producing during MAC play. Norton has 15 hits with a .432 batting average. She also comes up with big hit after big hit, as she is second on the team in RBIs with 13.

Junior Morgan Bittner and freshman Nicole Gremillion have been pitching well in MAC play for the Huskies.

Bittner has a record of 3-2 and has posted 4 saves in 41.1 innings pitched while Gremillion is a perfect 4-0 while earning one save.

Looking ahead to the weekend, the Huskies are not worried about their opponents. They are only focused on themselves, and they want to continue to play their own game.

“We want to continue to play the way that we know we are capable of,” Chouinard said. “We want to let the offense carry us.”