Evenly matched playoffs set to begin: Softball looks to turn the tables against Phoenix in post-season

By Ron Griffith

The post-season has finally arrived for the Glendale Community College softball team (22-16 ACCAC, 36-26 overall).

The playoffs begin May 7 at Mesa Community College.

GCC, the third seed, will play Phoenix College, who is the second seed, in their first matchup.

Historically, there are not many programs that can hold a candle to Phoenix College.

In each of the past five seasons Phoenix has had a hand in ending GCC’s season, including a heartwrenching 7-6 loss in last year’s championship game.

This year, however, Glendale is 3-2 against the powerful Phoenix team.

In this double-elimination style tournament, Coach Rebecca Schweitzer believes that the tournament is very evenly matched.

“We feel confident going in. We’ve had success against every team there so that helps mentally, but everyone is so even this year that each of them has had success against us too.”

The Gauchos should have confidence when they have Kirsten Linert on the mound.

Four times this spring, Linert has received ACCAC Pitcher of the Week honors. Linert went 2-0 for the week of April 19, beating South Mountain Community College and Mesa Community College.

She went 12 innings with one earned run and 22 strike outs.

Linert finished the regular season with an era of .68 to lead the conference and 244 strike outs in 185 innings pitched, which led the region.

The Gaucho’s offensive standout is Jennifer Eberhardt, who leads the team in hits, doubles, RBI’s, and batting average.

Eberhardt will be also be crucial with regards to the team’s playoff hopes.

When the playoffs begin, Glendale will not have played for two weeks going into the opening round.

It will be important for the squad to remain in top shape if they hope to contend in the post-season.

“This week we will do a lot of live stuff [in practice] since we haven’t had a game since the 22nd,” Schweitzer said.

In the other division matchup #1 Mesa Community College will play # 4 South Mountain Community College on the same day of May 7.

More information on the matchups can be found on the conference website at www.accac.org.