FGCU softball lands #5 seed in NCAA tourney

Having the most wins of any team in the 64-field NCAA Tournament failed to garner the Florida Gulf Coast University softball team anything better than a No. 5 seed.

The Eagles will make their first-ever trip to the South Regional tomorrow when they face No. 4 North Alabama at 4:30 p.m. All games in the eight-team double-elimination regional, which concludes May 15, will be held at Florida Southern College in Lakeland.

The winner will advance with champions of the other seven regionals to the finals in Salem, Va. May 18-22.

FGCU, ranked No. 25 in the nation, will take a 57-7 record into tomorrow's game. The only other teams with more than 50 wins are Emporia State (54-4) and Humboldt State (52-54), both of which are No. 1 seeds in the North Central and West regionals, respectively.

The Eagles, who are an independent, were last in action on April 22 when they swept a doubleheader against visiting Lynn. FGCU finished 44-3 at home.

The Eagles had a 35-game winning streak halted before going 5-3 in their final eight games.

In their only meeting of the season, FGCU beat North Alabama 3-1 at the West Georgia Softball Tournament on Feb. 17. Freshman Melissa Geissler scattered seven hits and struck out three to earn her first victory as an Eagle. Geissler went on to finish the regular season with a 13-2 record and 1.65 ERA.

Last season FGCU lost two of three against North Alabama.

The winner of the FGCU-North Alabama game will face the winner of the No. 1 Florida Southern-No.8 Kentucky State game on Friday at 7 p.m. Florida Southern, which was FGCU's first-ever opponent in softball in 2002, finished the regular season at 49-5.

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