JOHNSON CITY, TN- After having just over 24 hours to celebrate its first-ever conference tournament title, the ETSU softball team learned its destination and opponent for this weekend’s NCAA Regional, as the entire 64-team field was announced Sunday night on ESPN2.
The Buccaneers – who went 4-0 this past week at the Southern Conference Championship in Chattanooga – earned the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. ETSU enters the regional with an overall record of 29-24, which is one win shy of tying the single-season program record.
ETSU will travel to Alabama to take on the host and No. 7 national seed Auburn Tigers on Friday at Jane B. Moore Field. First pitch is set for 4:30 p.m. ET and will be televised live on ESPNU. The other two teams in the regional are Notre Dame out of the ACC and California from the Pac-12 Conference.
Auburn enters the tournament with a 46-10 record, while Notre Dame and Cal also earned at-large bids. Notre Dame is 33-21, while Cal is 30-22.
ETSU and Auburn have faced each other once in program history with the Tigers defeating the Bucs, 11-3, back on Feb. 8, 2013. The Bucs have also faced Notre Dame once as the Fighting Irish won 6-1 back on March 6, 2010. ETSU and Cal have never met.
The two winning teams will play Saturday at 5 p.m. ET, while the two losing teams play an elimination game at 2:30 p.m.
ETSU is one of three teams making its debut in the NCAA Tournament. The Bucs are joined by Montana and Saint Francis (PA).
Courtesy: East Tennessee State Athletics