Buffalo Releases 2011 Schedule
BUFFALO, NY - Four southern tournaments and matchups against some of the very best teams in the nation highlight the Buffalo softball team's 2011 schedule.
The Bulls, coming off its second appearance ever in the MAC postseason tournament, are looking to make a major leap forward and will have a challenging schedule that features three teams ranked in the final 2010 NCAA poll in its non-conference schedule.
The season will kick off down in Florida for the Jacksonville Tournament, with Buffalo facing host Jacksonville and Kansas in a doubleheader February 11. The team will play five games total in the tournament, highlighted by a matchup against North Carolina, ranked 24 in the nation at the end of last season.
The next weekend will be the 8th Annual Georgia Softball Classic, hosted by the Bulldogs. Buffalo will face Marshall in the first game of a doubleheader Friday February 18 before taking on Georgia, who comes into the season as the third-ranked team in the nation and is the only team to advance to the Women's College World Series final four in both of the past two season.
Following the five-game weekend at Georgia, the team will then travel back up north for the Marshall Tournament March 5 and 6. The four games will include two against the Thundering Herd as well as a match against MAC rival Kent State. Next up for the team will be the Florida Atlantic Tournament March 11-13. The five-game weekend will feature games against Rutgers, Purdue, Michigan State and host Florida Atlantic.
After a mid-week doubleheader against Purdue and Florida Gulf Coast, the team will have its final tournament of the spring with the South Florida - The Game Tournament March 18-20. The five-game tournament will kick off with a game against Texas A&M, a team that finished last season ranked 20 in the nation.
Two mid-week games against Penn State and Canisius will close the main portion of the team's non-conference schedule, as it will then open April with a doubleheader against Toledo April 1 and then games at Bowling green April 2 and 3.
Buffalo will then return home for a nine-game home stand, starting with a doubleheader in the home opener April 8 against Northern Illinois and two more games against Western Michigan April 9 and 10. It will be a strenuous eight-games-in-nine-days stretch for the Bulls, who have a doubleheader against Cleveland State (4/13) and a weekend series against Kent State (April 16, 17).
For the final three home games of the season, Buffalo will play Ohio April 29 and Akron April 30 and May 1 for senior day. A four-game trip to Michigan will close the season for Buffalo with two games against Eastern Michigan (May 6) and two games at Central Michigan (May 7 and 8).