The Virginia Tech Hokies softball team sent a message this past weekend, and that is they are legitimate national championship contenders.
This past weekend the No. 2 (USA Today / NFCA Top 25 Coaches Poll) / No. 3 (ESPN / USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 Poll) claimed the series against the now No. 4 / No. 4 Florida State Seminoles. At the time of the series the Hokies were ranked No. 4 / No. 5 and the Seminoles were ranked No. 2 / No. 3.
VT traveled to Tallahassee to face FSU, this past weekend, with one game on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. On Friday Virginia Tech won 6-3, during a nine-inning game, to open the series with a win. Keely Rochard struck out 14 Seminole players and the Hokies crushed three homeruns with Meredith Slaw accounting for two of the homers. The Hokies put on an offensive exhibition on Saturday, scoring 23 runs to the Seminoles’ nine. By the bottom of the fourth inning the Hokies had a commanding 11-0 lead, before FSU found a seam and scored an impressive nine runs before VT returned to bat in the fifth. It was 13-9 at the start of the seventh when the Hokies answered further with ten runs, to which the Seminoles had no retort. Slaw collected her third homerun of the series, contributing to her being named the ACC Player of the Week. VT entered the final game on Sunday, having already clinched the series, but struggled to find home until the top of the sixth inning when Addy Greene hit a grand slam to place the Hokies in the lead, 6-3. Unfortunately, the sixth inning was also when Florida State decided to find their bats and they scored five runs to retake the lead 8-6, where the score remained until the end of regulation.
Just a few from the weekend pic.twitter.com/WsO3YAQscK— Virginia Tech Softball (@HokiesSoftball) April 11, 2022
The Hokies have won every series they have faced thus far this season, including three against Top 25 squads. Of Virginia Tech’s five loses two were by one point only and the remaining three were by only two points. Four of their five losses have come at the hands of ranked opponents, and their unranked opponent defeat (Charlotte) still sports a winning record.
The Hokies have an overall record of 29-5 and a conference record of 13-1. They also are the only team, besides Oklahoma, to have a first-place vote in the ESPN / USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 Poll. Behind the pitching of the impressive VT bullpen and the offensive prowess of the Hokie bats, demonstrated against top-tier opponents, the Virginia Tech Hokies have shown that they are legitimate NCAA National Championship contenders.
Love the @D1Softball RPI chart that updates daily!@HokiesSoftball has moved up to #1 with an overall SOS of 3 and a non conference SOS of 1.— Amanda Scarborough (@ascarborough) April 12, 2022
Oklahoma clearly passes eye test, but just 3 Top 25 wins compared to 12 for Bama, 10 for VA Tech and 9 for UCLA. pic.twitter.com/vufKE77ZXK