PEORIA, Ill. -- Bradley looks to continue its winning ways this weekend, closing out a six-game Missouri Valley Conference road swing with a three-game series at Indiana State Saturday and Sunday. The Braves took two of three games at Missouri State over the weekend and have won four of their last five heading into the weekend set with the Sycamores.
The series is scheduled to begin with a 10 a.m. (CDT) game Saturday at Eleanor Forsythe St. John Softball Complex in Terre Haute, Ind., and will conclude with an 11 a.m. (CDT) doubleheader on Sunday.
Bradley (15-20 overall, 5-7) moved into a tie with Missouri State for sixth in the Valley standings after taking two of three games from the Lady Bears over the weekend and look to keep pace with the league leaders with this week's games marking the halfway point of the regular-season Missouri Valley Conference schedule.
Indiana State (14-22 overall, 1-11 MVC) opened a season-long, 10-game home stand Tuesday with a win against Eastern Illinois and faces Indiana Wednesday afternoon at home before the weekend series. The Sycamores earned their first conference win of the year over the weekend, topping Southern Illinois 4-2 in the series opener last Friday.
A link to the live stats for all three games in the weekend series against Indiana State will be available at BradleyBraves.com
The Braves swept a doubleheader from the Sycamores last season in Peoria and hold a 50-27 lead in the all-time series. Bradley is 6-1 in the last seven games in the series and holds a 9-3 advantage since the start of the 2007 season.
Senior Jackie Roth (Hickory Hills, Ill./Stagg) enters the weekend series with a .526 career batting average (10-for-19) against Indiana State. She is 10-for-16 (.625) at the plate with seven runs and five RBI in her last five games against the Sycamores.
Bradley has hit five home runs in the last five games after collecting four home runs in the first 30 outings of the year. Sophomore Alex Chandler (Needles, Calif./Needles) hit home runs in back-to-back games during BU's recent power surge to push her team-leading home run total to three, while freshman Alyson Clemente (Murrieta, Calif./Murrieta Valley) had the first multi-homer game by a Brave since 2009 with a pair of dingers in the series opener against Missouri State.
In addition to the increased power of late, Bradley's pitchers have combined for a 1.00 ERA over the last five games to help the Braves take four of the last five. BU's hurlers have posted a 4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio during the stretch.
Junior Mackenzie Camp (Mapleton, Ill./Limestone) pitched 8.2 scoreless innings in the series against Missouri State, while sophomore Madeline Lynch-Crumrine (Sedro-Woolley, Wash./Sedro-Woolley) has the most innings pitched (127.1) since Ashley Birdsong threw a school record 232 innings in 2009 and boasts a 1.92 ERA in Missouri Valley Conference play.
Following the series against Indiana State, Bradley is scheduled to close out the regular season with eight of the final 13 games at home beginning with a doubleheader against Northern Iowa at 2 p.m. on April 18 at Laura Bradley Park.