Softball begins AE Championship charge against Albany

Head coach Megan Bryant

May 8, 2012

America East Championship Central

Boston, Mass. - The Stony Brook softball team will open the 2012 America East Championship against third-seeded Albany on Friday at 1:30 p.m. in Boston, Mass. The No. 2 seed in the competition, Stony Brook will be looking for its second conference championship in program history after winning its first title in 2008.


Friday, May 11

Game 1: No. 1 Boston University vs. No. 4 Maine, 11 a.m.

Game 2: No. 2 Stony Brook vs. No. 3 Albany, 1:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 12

Game 3: Winner of Game 1 vs. Winner of Game 2, 11 a.m.

Game 4: Loser of Game 1 vs. Loser of Game 2, 1:30 p.m.

Game 5:  Loser of Game 3 vs. Winner of Game 4, 4 p.m.

Sunday, May 13

Game 7: Championship Game (Winner of Game 3 vs. Winner of Game 5), TBD

Championship Format
The America East Tournament is a double-elimination format, meaning that a team must lose twice in order to be eliminated from the competition.

What's at Stake
The winner of the 2012 America East Championship will earn the conference's automatic bid to the 2012 NCAA Softball Championship. The selection show for the championship will be held on Sunday, May 13 at 10 p.m., and the tournament begins Thursday, May 17. The 2012 Women's College World Series will be held May 31-June 6 in Oklahoma City, Okla.

The Competition
Stony Brook will open the tournament against Albany; this will be the fourth consecutive meeting between the teams counting the last three games of the regular season. Stony Brook posted a 2-1 record against the Great Danes and owns a winning record against every other team in the tournament (2-1 vs. BU, 2-0-1 vs. Maine).

Homefield (Dis)advantage
Since Stony Brook joined the America East in 2002, only one team (Maine in 2004) has won the tournament as the host. Boston University has hosted the tournament twice since 2002 and both times Albany has prevailed as the champion (2007 and 2011).

Tournament History
Since 2002, Boston University and Albany have each won four titles, while Stony Brook (2008) and Maine (2004) have each won one. Boston University and Albany have also made the most championship game appearances with seven each, while Stony Brook has made three and Maine, Hartford and UMBC have all made one.

Defending the Title
Albany, Stony Brook's first opponent, won the 2011 America East championship and will look to defend its title. The Great Danes feature one of the most explosive hitters in the conference in Charlise Castro, who hit .468 with 13 home runs and 52 RBI during the regular season. Albany is also strong in the circle with Brittany MacFawn (18-5, 1.62 ERA) and Brittany Schwieger (14-5, 1.78 ERA) splitting time.

Stony Brook's Crown
The Seawolves won the 2008 America East Championship with a 4-0 win over Albany. Then-sophomore Alyssa Struzenberg was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Tournament after throwing two shutouts, including a four-hitter in the title game.

Leading Ladies
Senior Suzanne Karath (Fishkill, N.Y.) enters the America East Tournament with the most hits in the conference with 63. Karath hit .356 with four triples and 18 stolen bases during the year. Freshman Allison Cukrov (Irvine, Calif.) also leads the conference in several categories, including wins (24), appearances (38), innings pitched (218.1) and strikeouts (220).