Softball Earns No. 5 Seed at Big Ten Tournament
STATE COLLEGE, Pa., May 7, 2001 - The Penn State softball team will begin Big Ten Tournament action this Thursday, May 10 in Ann Arbor, Mich. The fifth-seeded Nittany Lions will play fourth-seeded Illinois on the opening day of the tournament at 12 p.m. The live broadcast for each Penn State tournament games can be heard through the Penn State Athletic Department's official web site at www.GoPSUsports.com.
The Nittany Lions enter the tournament with a 30-24 overall record and a 9-11 mark in the Big Ten. Penn State swept the Illini earlier in the season in State College, 7-0 and 4-2. Illinois, in its inaugural Big Ten season, is 47-21 and 12-8 in conference action.
Penn State ended the regular season in a tie for fifth with Wisconsin and Purdue, but wins over Iowa and the Illini earlier in the season gave the fifth seed to the Lions and the sixth seed to the Badgers, while the Boilermakers were shut out of the tournament.
The top six teams in the league qualify for the tournament. Besides the Badgers, the Illini and the Lions, regular season champion and host Michigan took the number one seed, followed by #2 Iowa and #3 Ohio State. Michigan and Iowa have each earned byes in the double-elimination tournament.
Penn State is just one of three teams to qualify for the Big Ten Tournament in each of the past three seasons. The Wolverines and the Hawkeyes are the other two teams.
The Lions have never won the Big Ten Tournament title. The winner of the tournament earns an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.
BIG TEN TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE May 10-12, 2001 Ann Arbor, Michigan Day One - Thursday, May 10 Game 1: #3 Ohio State vs. #6 Wisconsin, 9:30 a.m. Game 2: #4 Illinois vs. #5 Penn State, 12 p.m. Game 3: #2 Iowa vs. Winner Game 1, 2:30 p.m. pg. 2 - SOFTBALL AT BIG TENS Game 4: #1 Michigan vs. Winner Game 2, 5 p.m. Day Two - Friday, May 11 Game 5: Loser Game 2 vs. Loser Game 3, 9:30 a.m. Game 6: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 4, 12 p.m. Game 7: Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4, 2:30 p.m. Game 8: Winner Game 5, vs. Winner Game 6, 5 p.m. Day Three - Saturday, May 12 Game 9: Winner Game 8 vs. Loser Game 7, 12 p.m. Finals: Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 9, 2:30 p.m. --LIONS--