This weekend, the Minnesota State softball team will play their first series since March 21, when they will take on Minot State in a Friday afternoon doubleheader.
The Mavericks (11-2), were set to play their first interconference games against Concordia-St. Paul on Tuesday this week, but were cancelled due to COVID-19 testing protocols within the Golden Bears program.
Minot State (9-7, 2-0 NSIC) began their interconference games earlier this week when they took on the UMary Marauders, taking both wins in the doubleheader 6-2 and 10-2.
Prior to their games on Monday, the Beavers were on a six game losing streak, dropping three doubleheaders to Southwest Minnesota State, St. Cloud State, and Minnesota-Duluth.
Since 2013, the Mavericks are undefeated with 16 wins against the Beavers. Their most recent wins came in a 2019 doubleheader, where the Mavs won both games by scores of 10-7 and 12-7.
Overall, both squads are neck and neck in team batting average, with Minot slightly having the edge of .326, to the Mavericks .320.
Minnesota State, who have played the least amount of games in the NSIC with 13, lead the league in ERA with 0.94. Minot State lingers in the latter half of the standings in this category with an ERA of 3.92 through 16 games.
McKayla Armbruster leads this effort with an ERA of just 0.23, leading the NSIC, and a 5-0 record in five starts this season. Armbruster has allowed just one run and five walks in 112 at bats while striking out 22.
Mackenzie Ward lends a helping hand with a 1.19 ERA and a 6-2 record on the year, and while she has allowed 10 runs on the year, Ward also struckout 87 of the 158 batters she faced. Batters are just hitting just a .139 average when Ward is on the mound, good for second in the NSIC, while Armbrsuter is third in the NSIC in the same category with .188.
Some of the best hitting coming out of Mankato comes from Torey Richards, a junior from Mankato, as she is hitting a .463 batting average with a 1.096 OPS. The batting average ranks fourth in the NSIC.
Hannah McCarville is just behind Richards in batting average, hitting .417 through 36 plate appearances this season, and she leads the team in RBI’s with 13. McCarville also has the highest slugging percentage on the team with .722.
The series will be the first time the Mavericks have played at home since Feb. 13 in the Minnesota State DII Softball Classic.