CHARLESTON, S.C. - Three home tournaments, road tournaments to Duke and Jacksonville University, and home conference series against Radford, USC Upstate, Gardner-Webb, and Winthrop highlight the 2019 Charleston Southern softball schedule as announced by head coach Venus Taylor on Thursday afternoon.
The Buccaneers roster features a blend of senior experience as well as youthful enthusiasm this year headlined by a quintet of seniors. NFCA All-Region outfielder Jade Gandara headlines the senior class that features veterans Caitlyn Emberson, Destini Ewing, Annie Bakenhus, and Arizona Pilgrim. The Bucs also return speedsters Kendall Anderson and Meghan Gagliano to a squad that ranked in the top 30 in Division I in both home runs and stolen bases in 2018.
"We are very excited for the upcoming season," Taylor said. "Our goal is to compete for the Big South Championship and represent Charleston Southern University at the NCAA Tournament. We've been putting in the work and paying attention to detail. I believe our efforts in these areas will serve us well. We look forward to competing as a team at the highest level to attain our goals."
Charleston Southern opens 2019 with its first home tournament on the opening weekend of the season. The Bucs host Dayton, Maryland-Eastern Shore, and South Dakota over the four-day stretch at the CSU Softball Field.
Following a midweek game against Coastal Carolina on February 13, the Bucs are back home for their second tournament. CSU hosts Detroit Mercy, ETSU, and Maine in a championship tournament on February 15-17 with the consolation and championship set for Sunday, February 17.
The Bucs travel to Columbia, S.C. for a midweek contest against the Gamecocks on February 20, before returning home for their final home weekend tournament. CSU will host the Holy City Showdown in conjunction with College of Charleston on February 22-24 with Dartmouth, UMass Lowell, Marshall, and UNC Wilmington visiting over the three-day tournament.
CSU closes tournament play on the road over the following two weeks. The Bucs travel to Duke and N.C. State for the Duke Invitational on March 1-3 taking on Ohio (twice), Duke, N.C. State, and Kansas. Following a midweek home game against CofC (Mar. 6), the Bucs are back on the road for the JU/UNF Spring Break Challenge on March 9-10 taking on Cleveland State, North Florida, Georgetown, and Jacksonville.
The Bucs host a midweek contest against N.C. State on Tuesday, March 12, in their final tune-up to Big South Conference play.
CSU hosts Radford and USC Upstate within a five-day span to open conference play in mid-March. The Bucs welcome the Highlanders on March 16-17 and then turn back around to host USC Upstate on March 19-20 at the CSU Softball Field.
The Bucs follow up with a nearly month-long road trip that will feature four conference road series. CSU will travel to Campbell (Mar. 23-24), Presbyterian (Mar. 27 & Apr. 3), Hampton (Apr. 6-7), and Longwood (Apr. 13-14), as well as make a road trip to College of Charleston (Apr. 16) over the four-week span.
CSU closes out the 2019 regular season at home with weekend conference series against Gardner-Webb (Apr. 19-20) and Winthrop (May 4-5). Senior Day for the Bucs will be on Sunday, May 5, against the Eagles.
The 2019 Big South Conference Softball Championships will be held from May 8-11 in Buies Creek, N.C. by Campbell University.