CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia softball (5-8) begins its slate of home games in 2019 by hosting Rutgers on Thursday (Feb. 28) before welcoming Buffalo, Delaware and Norfolk State for the Cavalier Classic played Friday-Sunday (March 1-3) at The Park.
Thursday’s home opener against Rutgers is set for a 5 p.m. first pitch. The Cavaliers will then play five games as part of the Cavalier Classic. Admission to all Virginia softball home games is free in 2019, including the entirety of the Cavalier Classic.
Thursday, Feb. 28 – 5 p.m. | Rutgers
Friday, March 1 – 3 p.m. | Buffalo
Friday, March 1 – 5:30 p.m. | Delaware
Saturday, March 2 – 3 p.m. | Delaware
Saturday, March 2 – 5:30 p.m. | Buffalo
Sunday, March 3 – 3 p.m. | Norfolk State
Fans who are unable to attend the games can follow along with live stats at VirginiaSports.com. Live stats will be provided for all games in the Cavalier Classic, including neutral site matchups.
• Nine first-years have already made their collegiate debut for the Cavaliers this season.
• This weekend is the first time Virginia has hosted a non-conference tournament since 2012.
• Rutgers has been the foe in Virginia’s home opener once before with the Scarlet Knights spoiling the 2004 opener with a 4-0 victory.
• The Cavaliers play nine of their next 10 games at home.
• Virginia assistant Kaleigh Rafter spent a season as an assistant at Buffalo before joining the Cavaliers’ staff.
• Senior Lacy Smith (Lancaster, Pa.) leads the Cavaliers in batting average, RBI, home runs, slugging and on-base percentage.
• Her five home runs are just one off her 2018 total and three away from her career high in a single season.
• With 12 RBI already this season, Smith is on pace to drive in 49 runs this season. That would be the most since Sara Larquier drove in 49 in 2004.
• At this pace, Smith would break Virginia’s single-season home run record of 13 by the end of March.
IN HOME OPENERS
• Virginia is 24-15 all-time in its home openers.
• The Cavaliers have dropped four consecutive home openers since defeating No. 9 Florida State in 2014 to open play at The Park.
• This is just the second time in the past seven seasons that the Cavaliers’ home opener has come against a non-conference foe (2018, Campbell).
• Virginia has once again found success with the long ball this season with 12 through the first 13 games.
• The Cavaliers are on pace to flirt with a 50 home run season once again. Virginia has hit 50 or more homers in the past two seasons and three of the last four.
• Three Cavaliers, Smith, Busby and Barber, have multiple homers on the season.
• Virginia is 6-7 all-time against Rutgers. 12 of the 13 meetings have come in Charlottesville where the series is tied 6-6.
• Virginia has never faced Buffalo. The Cavaliers are 55-30 all-time against MAC foes.
• Virginia holds a 3-1 lead in the series against Delaware.
• Virginia is meeting Norfolk State for the first time since 2010 and holds a 4-0 mark in the series.