NMSU Softball Releases 2018 Schedule

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - New Mexico State softball head coach Kathy Rodolph unveiled the 2018 softball schedule on Monday. This season Rodolph looks to challenge her squad with a demanding schedule as the team looks to claim its fourth-straight Western Athletic Conference regular-season championship and third WAC Tournament title in the past four years.

The 2018 slate features 51 regular-season contests with 17 games against Power-5 opponents. The Aggies are also set to take on seven teams that went on to play in last year’s NCAA Tournament including Women’s College World Series semifinalists Washington and the two-time defending national champions Oklahoma.

“Every year I try to play a tough nonconference schedule to prepare our team for battle during conference play,” Rodolph said. “This year is no different. We have a talented young group of Aggies ready to leave it all on the field. We hope to see everyone at the diamond.”

NM State opens the season against Southeastern Conference powerhouse Kentucky at the NM State Softball Complex from Feb. 10-11. The Wildcats posted a 39-19 record in 2017 which included a trip to the NCAA Super Regionals.

The Aggies remain at home for their next set of contests as they host the annual Troy Cox Classic from Feb. 16-18. Boston U, Ball State and the two-time defending national champions Oklahoma are set to take the field at the tournament. NM State plays the Sooners and Terriers twice while facing the Cardinals once.

Following the Troy Cox Classic, New Mexico State travels to UTEP for the first installment of the Battle of I-10 on Feb. 20. The Aggies return to El Paso, Texas, from Feb 23-25 for a tournament where NM State takes on Portland State and Idaho State.

The Aggies head to Lubbock, Texas, to take on Big 12 conference foe Texas Tech on Feb. 27. The NM State squad remains on the road as the team travels to Tempe, Ariz., to participate in a tournament hosted by Arizona State on March 2-4. The Aggies face Coastal Carolina three times while taking on the Sun Devils once.

New Mexico State continues its 2018 campaign with a tournament in Las Vegas on March 8-10, where the team takes on Portland State, DePaul, Washington and host UNLV. NM State takes the field against the Vikings, Blue Demons and Rebels for a second-straight season. The Aggies take on the Huskies, who saw their 2017 season end in the Women’s College World Series semifinals, twice at the Rebel Classic.

On March 16-17, New Mexico State welcomes Minnesota for a three-game series. The Golden Gophers come into the 2018 campaign after posting 56-5 record in 2017. The series serves as a homecoming for Minnesota assistant coach Cat Heifner, who previously served as Rodolph’s associate head coach for 14 seasons.

NM State hits the road following the series as the team opens the Battle of I-25 with a midweek tilt at New Mexico on March 21. Last season the Aggies swept the Lobos, which included a five-inning shutout of UNM. The rivalry contests continue on March 27 when New Mexico State hosts UTEP in a doubleheader at the NM State Softball Complex.

WAC play opens for the Aggies with a series at Kansas City from March 30-31. NM State swept the Roos in 2017, outscoring UMKC 24-5. The Aggies return home following the road trip with a contest against UNM on April 3.

New Mexico State jumps back into WAC play by hosting CSU Bakersfield for a three-game series from April 6-7. The Aggies posted a 3-1 record against the Roadrunners last season, including a 7-2 victory to open the WAC Tournament. NM State continues league play by traveling to Grand Canyon the following weekend. The Lopes took the series against New Mexico State last season, which earned the Lopes a share of the regular-season title.

A challenging doubleheader awaits the Aggies when the team travels to face Arizona on April 18. NM State fell three times to the Wildcats in 2017 including the opening contest at the NCAA Tucson Regional. NM State resumes conference play on the road, taking on Utah Valley from April 20-21. The Wolverines claimed the No. 2 seed in the WAC Tournament last season but bowed out early as they fell in their first two contests.

NM State closes conference play at home on April 27-28 with a series against Seattle U. During the 2017 WAC Tournament, the Aggies rallied after being down 14-11 in the seventh to claim the first championship contest and behind an impressive pitching performance by Fahren Glackin, New Mexico State shutout Seattle U in the final game to claim the WAC’s automatic qualification to the NCAA Tournament.

The Aggies close out the regular season with a doubleheader against Arizona State on May 1. The Sun Devils posted a 31-22 overall record last season, which included an appearance at the NCAA Super Regionals.

The 2018 WAC Tournament is set to take place in the City of Crosses for the second-straight year. This is the fifth time NM State has hosted the event. All six conference teams advance to the double-elimination tournament following the regular season which is set to take place on May 9-12.

New Mexico State returns 15 players from its 2017 squad including the WAC Player of the Year Kelsey Horton. NM State posted a 29-25 overall record in 2017, which included a conference regular season title, a WAC tournament title and an appearance in the NCAA tournament.