Oregon State Softball Announces 2012 Schedule
Sept. 26, 2011
CORVALLIS, Ore. - The Oregon State University softball program and head coach Kirk Walker announced the team's 2012 schedule on Monday. The Beavers will play a 56-game regular-season slate, including 24 Pac-12 Conference tilts and 25 spring tournament contests.
The 2012 schedule features five regular-season tournaments, highlighted by the Cathedral City Classic from Feb. 23-26, hosted by Oregon State in Palm Springs, Calif. A total of 31 games will come against teams that advanced to the 2011 NCAA Division I Softball Championship a season ago, including 18 matchups against six of the national seeds. Additionally, 22 games will be against teams ranked in the final USA Today/NFCA Top-25 Poll of 2011. The Beavers will also face a number of unfamiliar opponents, matching up with 15 teams that the program has played five times or less, and four squads that they will take on for the first time.
"The nice thing about this schedule is that we're playing some teams that we haven't played in the recent past," Oregon State head coach Kirk Walker said. "It definitely is a group of talented teams in our tournaments. We have some good opportunities to play solid out-of-region teams."
For the second consecutive year, Oregon State opens its campaign at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz., Feb. 9-12, by playing five games in three days. The Beavers will take on Idaho State to open their 2012 schedule and will close out the kickoff tournament with a trio of games against Georgia Tech (Feb. 10), Nebraska (Feb. 11) and Texas Tech (Feb. 12), all of whom appeared in the NCAA regionals last May.
The next weekend, Feb. 17-19, OSU will travel to San Diego to participate in the San Diego State Aztec Invitational where it will play a series of teams from Southern California (SDSU, USD, UCSB) among a pair of other games against Central Florida and UC Davis.
From Feb. 23-26, Oregon State will host the Cathedral City Classic in Palm Springs, Calif. The upcoming edition of the premier Division I softball tournament in the country will include 35 elite teams, 22 of which played in the NCAA Tournament last season, with the Beavers taking on Iowa State (Feb. 23), New Mexico (Feb. 23), Ohio State (Feb. 24), Iowa (Feb. 24) and Colorado State (Feb. 26).
The final two weekends of non-conference games will have the Beavers remain in Southern California for the Cal State Fullerton De Marini Invitational (Mar. 2-4) and the Long Beach State Invitational (Mar. 8-10).
The De Marini event consists of five contests, including ones against host Fullerton and the Beavers' first-ever match up against Maryland, which advanced to the NCAA Tournament last season. OSU will play two more games against 2011 postseason teams before the conference schedule begins when it faces Notre Dame in the final game of the Long Beach State Tournament (Mar. 10) and Harvard (Mar. 11) in an unattached game at Cal State Northridge before the squad returns to Corvallis.
"One of the things I like most about the schedule is that we have some very challenging teams and some very historically strong teams in our preseason tournaments," Walker said. "Hopefully our team brings the same focus to play every day coming out and I think good things will happen."
After spending the beginning of its season down South, Oregon State returns home to open Pac-12 play with three games against Oregon in the Civil War Series, presented by the Northwest Ford Dealers and PacificSource Health Plans, Mar. 24-26.
The Beavers will alternate home and away series against conference foes starting with the Civil War. Oregon State will play Oregon, defending national champion Arizona State (Apr. 10-11), Washington (Apr. 20-22) and California (May 4-6) in Corvallis and will travel to UCLA (Mar. 30-Apr. 1), Stanford (Apr. 13-15) and Utah (Apr. 27-29) before wrapping up the regular season at Arizona (May 10-12). All Pac-12 matchups are three-game sets.
"Clearly the Pac-12 is always strong and adding Utah into the conference this year will be a new twist and a new trip that we're not used to," Walker said. "But they're a very good team that is going to represent the conference very well."
Doubleheaders against Cal State Northridge (Mar. 28) and Portland State (Apr. 4) interspersed during conference play round out the Beavers' challenging 56-game schedule. Twenty-four of Oregon State's last 29 games will be against 2011 NCAA Tournament Teams.
NCAA Regionals will take place on campus sites May 18-20 and NCAA Super Regionals will also be played on campus sites May 26-27. The 2012 Women's College World Series will be held at the ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City from May 31-June 6.
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