EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – The 21-5 SIUE softball team plays host to the Kansas Jayhawks in a 3 p.m. single game Wednesday at Cougar Field.
"We're certainly excited that Kansas is coming into town to play tomorrow," said SIUE Head Coach Sandy Montgomery.
The Cougars, which enter the contest receiving votes in the national polls, boast two of the top pitchers nationally in terms of strikeouts. Senior Haley Chambers-Book leads the Ohio Valley Conference in strikeouts with 118 and is 16th nationally. Freshman Emily Ingles leads the OVC in strikeouts per seven innings at 9.6 and is 21st nationally.
SIUE is coming off an 8-0, six-inning victory over Northern Kentucky in the final game of the SIUE Tournament this past weekend.
"Getting on our home field and playing before conference was important," said Montgomery. "It's always nice to be able to play in front of your fans and get used to your own field."
The Cougars played the first 23 games of the season away from Cougar Field and are now in the middle of an eight-game home stand.
Kansas enters the game with an 18-11 record. The Jayhawks offense is ranked No. 1 in the Big 12 in slugging percentage at .467. Kansas has hit 26 home runs in 29 games so far this season and is hitting .307 as a team. Taylor Dodson is tops on the team in homers with six.
The Kansas pitching staff holds a 2.34 earned run average. Alexis Reed is the team's leader in wins with 10. The defense behind the pitchers also is ranked seventh nationally with a .979 fielding percentage.