ORMOND BEACH, Fla. (May 8) – Defending champion Florida A&M will open the 2018 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Softball Championship here Wednesday against Delaware State in one of two 3:00 p.m. first round games at the Ormond Beach Sports Complex.
The 2018 Tournament features a revised format, adding a day to the schedule, which features four opening round games, rather than the traditional eight games, which had included two early elimination games.
FAMU (20-27, 11-4 MEAC) dropped all three games in their regular season finale series to archrival Bethune-Cookman, April 28-29, spoiling their bid for a second straight South Division title, for and one of the two top tournament seeds.
Instead, FAMU will open the event as the South’s #2 seed, facing off against North #3 Delaware State (12-33, 10-8 MEAC), which emerged from a three-way tie for third in the North with Coppin State (14-23, 10-8) and Norfolk State (22-23, 10-8), the latter which did not make the field based on tiebreaker rules.
North #2 Hampton University (22-26, 11-7 MEAC), making their final appearance in the MEAC Tournament before exiting to the Big South Conference, will play in the other 3:00 p.m. bout against South #3 Savannah State (14-20, 8-7 MEAC).
Wednesday’s opening round begins at 12 Noon, as host and South top seed Bethune-Cookman (27-24, 12-3 MEAC) will face North #4 Coppin State, and North #1 Morgan State (27-15, 15-3 MEAC), will tangle with South #4 North Carolina Central (17-24, 8-7 MEAC).
Should FAMU win their opening game, they would advance to Thursday’s 3:00 p.m. second round winner’s bracket game against the Morgan State-NCCU winner.
However, a Wednesday setback would drop FAMU into the elimination bracket, where they would face the loser of the Bethune-Cookman-Coppin State game at 12 noon. A win in that game would send the Rattler Women into a 5:00 p.m. eliminator against the loser of one of the 3:00 p.m. winner’s bracket games.
The championship game is set for Saturday at 12 noon.