2014 Georgia Softball Season Recap
June 3, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. - The Georgia softball team continued its tradition of success in 2014, advancing to the Super Regional round of the NCAA Tournament for the sixth time in the last seven years. On the way to its Super Regional appearance, the Bulldogs made history, taking home the program’s first ever Southeastern Conference Tournament title over three unforgettable nights in Columbia, S.C.
Georgia finished the season with a 49-15 record that included a 15-9 mark in SEC play. The Bulldogs also had 13 wins over ranked teams, including six wins over teams that were ranked in the top 10. For their efforts over the regular season and the SEC Tournament, the Bulldogs were selected at the No. 4 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament, allowing them to host both a Regional and a Super Regional. It was the seventh time that Georgia was selected to host a Regional and the fourth time that it hosted a Super Regional.
The Bulldogs opened their season with a 22-2 record that included wins over eventual NCAA Tournament participants James Madison, NC State and UAB. Georgia continued its hot streak at the start of SEC play, sweeping Mississippi State to open league play. The Bulldogs went on to win series against Texas A&M, South Carolina and Auburn before taking a 10-2, six-inning win over No. 7 Alabama in Tuscaloosa. The momentum continued into the final regular-season series when Georgia swept No. 10 Kentucky.
After posting a 15-9 mark in SEC play, which tied for the third-best record among league schools, Georgia was awarded the No. 5 seed in the SEC Tournament. The Bulldogs had the daunting task of facing fifth-ranked Florida and sixth-ranked Alabama to get to the title game. Georgia was up to the task, posting a 2-0 shutout win over Florida before handing Alabama a 5-3 loss. The Bulldogs would face Kentucky for the fourth time in a week for an SEC Tournament title, guaranteeing a first ever winner. As it had for much of the season, Georgia relied on the talented right arm of sophomore Chelsea Wilkinson and timely hitting by a vaunted lineup. Wilkinson shut down the Wildcat offense, carrying a one-hitter into the seventh inning and allowing just two runs on three hits and struck out nine batters in the complete-game performance. Geri Ann Glasco provided the big hits for Georgia, going 3-for-4 with a home run, a run scored and two RBI. When the final out was recorded, the Bulldogs were the SEC Tournament Champions for the first time in school history. Following the win, Georgia had four players named to the SEC All-Tournament Team: Wilkinson, Paige Wilson, Glasco and Alex Hugo. Wilkinson, who went 3-0 during the tournament was named the 2014 SEC Tournament MVP.
Georgia was selected at the No. 4 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and hosted Chattanooga, UAB and NC State in the NCAA Athens Regional. The Bulldogs handed Chattanooga a 9-0 loss in the first game of the Regional before suffering a 5-4 loss to NC State in game two. After the loss, Georgia needed to win three-straight elimination games to advance to the Super Regional. The Bulldogs responded with three convincing wins, including two shutout performance, a no hitter and a run-rule victory. In the three elimination games, Georgia outscored its opponents 20-1. Georgia’s 8-0, five inning win over NC State sealed Georgia’s bid to the Super Regional. Wilkinson tossed a no-hitter in the game, making her just the second Bulldog to ever throw a no-hitter in postseason play.
The Bulldogs welcomed Baylor to Athens for the Super Regional but were unable to advance to the Women’s College World Series for the third time in program history, as Baylor took two games from the Bulldogs.
Along with the team accomplishments, Georgia had three First Team All-SEC selections (Hugo, Wilson and Wilkinson), four SEC All-Tournament selections (Glasco, Hugo, Wilson and Wilkinson), seven NFCA All-Region selections (Sam LaZear, Anna Swafford, Tina Iosefa, Glasco, Hugo, Wilson, Wilkinson) and two NFCA All-Americans (Hugo and Wilkinson). The seven NFCA All-Region honors was a program best and the most by an SEC team this season, the three First Team All-SEC selections were the most first team honorees since the 2010 season and Hugo’s All-American selection marked the first time since 2009 that a Bulldog had been named a First Team All-American.
Georgia will look to build on the 2014 campaign as 17 of the 18 players from this year are set to return, including the entire pitching staff and each position start. The Bulldogs will also welcome six newcomers in 2015.