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Friday, May 18, 2012

Friday Cardinal Couple - Five Cards named to Regional Softball team


-Five Softball Cards named to National FastPitch Coaches 2012 All Great Lakes Region team.

-NCAA Regional starts today at Ulmer with Kentucky vs. Michigan. 

-Preakness picks

Five players from the University of Louisville softball team have been named to the 2012 All Great Lakes Regional team. Tori Collins, Alicja Wolny, Kristin Austin and Taner Fowler were First Team selections and Katie Keller was named to the Second Team. 

They'll take the field tonight with their teammates to face Valparaiso at 7 p.m. in 1st round play of the NCAA Regional Tournament at Ulmer Stadium....the second game of the day.


The day opens with Michigan and Kentucky doing battle at 4:30 p.m. Today's games will be shown on ESPN2, with Beth Mowins and Jessica Mendoza providing the broadcast dialogue. I guess they wanted to share Jennie Finch with other parts of the nation...


The Wolverines come into the regionals fresh off their fifth straight Big 10 softball title. Amassing a 39-15 record, UM looks for a repeat of last year, when the defeated Kentucky in Ann Arbor to advance to the Super Regionals. 

In the circle, Michigan is led by Haylie Wagner. She has a 29-5 record this season and a 1.55 ERA. When the Wolverines step up to the plate, watch for Amanda Chidester. She lifted nine home runs over the fences this year and had a team best .354 batting average. 


 A bit of a drop off this year for the Wildcats in the extremely competitive world of SEC Softball...UK went 29-28 on the season and finished fourth in the SEC Eastern Division. They also lost twice to Louisville during regular season play. 

Delivering the ball to home plate will most likely Chandra Bell. She's posted a 16-11 record so far this year and checks in with an ERA of 2.72. Or, the Cats could turn to Rachel Riley..who did beat Michigan once last season. 

Stepping into the batter's box and threatening the fences for UK will be Brittany Cervantes. She's said "Goodbye, Mr. Spalding" 13 times this season...tops for the Cats...and has a .319 batting average. Kara Dill leads UK with a .359 average and has scored 37
runs for Big Blue. 

Michigan Blue vs. UK Blue today...for the right to advance in the winners bracket and play either Louisville or Valparaiso. We'll go out on a limb here and predict that it'll be Wolverines vs. Cardinals advancing and playing in the first game Saturday. 

Great weather for softball today. Hope you can either get out and root for the Cards...or at least follow them on "the Deuce". We'll be back Saturday with reports on both games. L1C4, baby ! 


I'll Have Another won the Derby, but he may not
be the favorite for the Preakness.
The Preakness will be run at 6:20 p.m. Saturday and 11 horses will break from the starting gate in hopes of capturing the second leg of the Triple Crown. Will I'll Have Another repeat his Derby winning performance? Can Bodemeister hang on this time and grab the Black Eyed Susan bouquet? Or is there another of the 3 year olds out there that will lay claim to the winners' circle at Pimlico? 

Here are our predictions for the race. We give them to you a day early, so you'll have plenty of time to scratch them from your picks and come up with the likely winner. Hit it, maestro! 


Bodemeister will win the Preakness as
the betting favorite. 
" I think we see Bodemeister try to go wire-to-wire's the style he prefers...and with the shorter distance and tighter turns on Pimilco Race Track, I think he'll hit the wire first Saturday. I do expect I'll Have Another to be flying late again and should be a very close second. Went the Day Well also closed well in the Derby and he's my show choice. I'll use Creative Cause to fill out the Superfecta. I'm being Captain Obvious here, but at least it's a promotion from the buck private role I usually play." 


Sonja actually liked Derby Trial winner Hierro
but he was not entered for the Preakness
" I'm going 'price' in the Preakness and taking Creative Cause to win. Remember, he had to go eight horses wide in the stretch at the Derby to gain running room and with a smaller field and less early speed that'll be dying as the hit they Pimlico stretch...less trouble for Joel Rosario today and he's my longshot winner. He'll pass Bodemeister on the way to the wire...and ol' Bode hangs on for another second place finish. I'll Have Another will be flying late, as he normally does, but Saturday it'll get him third place. I'll go Teeth of the Dog for fourth. Joe Bravo always rides well in Maryland and wouldn't surprise me at all if he does better."

Good luck, enjoy the race and remember our selections are for entertainment purposes only. 

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