Lady Toppers set to host Hilltopper Spring Fling

Austin Lanter

Having already played 10 games on the road on different sides of the United States, the WKU Lady Topper softball team comes returns to the WKU Softball Complex to begin a nine-game homestand starting this weekend.

The next two weekends the team will be playing host to a variety of teams in the Hilltopper Spring Fling and Hilltopper Spring Classic.

The first game for WKU (5-4-1) in the Spring Fling will be Friday against Canisius (2-2) at 4 p.m., and again Sunday at 10 a.m.

The other teams in the Spring Fling are Miami (OH) and Bradley, who the Lady Toppers will only be playing once this weekend.

For first-year coach Amy Tudor, the four home games this weekend will be her first as a coach of WKU after playing in so many games as an undergraduate here when the program first started.

“I’m looking forward to playing at home,” she said. “It’ll be fun to coach the first games at home. The girls get to sleep in their own beds. A little familiarity. Get to go to class. Hopefully they’ll be a little less stressed out.”

Senior outfielder Kelsie Mattox agreed and said it will be nice to play in front of the home crowd.

“We’re definitely excited to be back home and be in front of our fans,” Mattox said. “People’s parents get to come out more than they did when we were on the West Coast. It should be fun to see family and friends and fans here in Bowling Green.”

The West Coast was not kind to the Lady Topper offense. In five games the team was shutout three times. In those losses, WKU only recorded eight hits.

However, Tudor is hopeful the offense can get going this weekend.

“We’ve got to swing at our pitch and I think that’s key,” she said. “In certain situations we swung at bad pitches and you have to swing at your pitch to be successful at the plate. We’ve got to find a way to get on (base).”

For Mattox, she said the team just needs to go back to basics.

“It’s just going back to fundamental softball and hitting the ball like we know we can,” Mattox said. “Getting good pitches to hit and taking advantage of when pitchers make mistakes. Just get rallies going.”

Each of the three teams coming to town this weekend has two wins a piece. Canisius and Miami (OH) are both 2-2 while Bradley is 2-8.

For Tudor though, it is not about the opponents but her team.

“For us, I’m not as concerned with who we’re playing but how we’re playing,” she said. “We’re not clicking on all cylinders right now. We need to get our offense going, our pitching going, and our defense going.

“The bright point is that we’re not clicking. As soon as we start clicking I feel like we’ll get more consistency.”