Written by D.J. Davis and Eric Jackson
No.3 Valdosta State (26-8) softball aims to complete a regular-season sweep against foe West Florida (13-17) Saturday afternoon.
The two squads meet again after the Blazers defeated the Argonauts (5-4, 11-5) a month ago in Pensacola, Fla., and look for their eighth straight victory over UWF.
“We’ve been blessed,” coach Thomas Macera said. “We’ve played well against them; the last games we played at West Florida were very close. They hit three balls against us there that would have left our park because they have a very big park, so it would have been a lot different game this year. We just gotta play a lot harder this weekend to keep that streak going.”
The Argos last beat the Blazers on March 6, 2011.
Both UWF and VSU come into the matchup after playing Gulf South Conference standings leader Union last weekend.
The Blazers managed to take Game 1 (4-1), but the second game was rained out and the day before the Argos split a doubleheader (6-0, 0-2) against the Bulldogs.
The Blazers are back for their final home stand after being on the road the last couple weeks.
“We’re glad to be home,” Macera said. “These road trips are long; everybody we play is eight, 10, 12 hours away. For them to sleep in their own bed now and to be able to recover a little bit better these next few games definitely helps.”
Macera is making sure the Blazers take it one game at a time as the Gulf South Conference tournament quickly approaches then the NCAA Division II tournament follows.
“We gotta get there first,” Macera said. “We gotta keep winning games now and just keep preparing for the next day.”
The defending national champs have a chance to pick up some steam heading into the postseason with three doubleheaders against conference teams at home the next three weekends.
VSU has four more doubleheaders against conference teams before the GSC tournament on May 3rd.
The Blazers play Game 1 at 4 p.m. and Game 2 follows Saturday at Steel’s Diamond at Blazer Park.
Follow Eric @epjackson and D.J. @dmac21bucs on Twitter.