SOUTH PRINCE GEORGE, Va. -- Richard Bland College second-year softball head coach Katy Lampman has announced her program's 48-game schedule for the upcoming 2018 NJCAA Division II season. The campaign features a 24-game Region X (10) Conference regular season, 26 home contests and eight games against four NJCAA Division I schools. Lampman is assisted this year by first-year assistant coaches Danielle Thacker and Troy Jacobs.
"I wanted to have a more consistent game schedule this year than we had last year, so we can get into a rhythm early in the season," said Lampman. "We have a roster full of freshmen, and I think the way we have structured our game and practice schedules will benefit them both academically and athletically this spring."
Richard Bland will play home and away doubleheaders against six Region 10 opponents this spring. The home games include Florence-Darlington (S.C.) on March 16 at 1 p.m., Southeastern-Whiteville (N.C.) on March 29 at 3 p.m., Surry (N.C.) on April 6 at 2 p.m., Patrick Henry on April 7 at 12 p.m., Pitt (N.C.) on April 13 at 3 p.m. and Wake Tech (N.C.) on April 18 at 3 p.m. The road games include Southeastern-Whiteville on February 23 at 1 p.m., Florence-Darlington on Feb. 24 at 12 p.m., Pitt on March 21 at 3 p.m., Surry on March 24 at 1 p.m., Wake Tech on March 28 at 1 p.m. and Patrick Henry on April 22 at 12 p.m.
"Region 10 is a growing conference, and we are fortunate to have so many teams to compete against," said Lampman.
The Division I portion of the schedule includes a home doubleheader against Harford (Md.) to open the season on Feb. 16 at 2 p.m., followed by road doubleheaders at Spartanburg Methodist (S.C.) on March 11 at 1 p.m., USC Sumter on March 12 at 1 p.m. and Louisburg (N.C.) on March 18 at 1 p.m.
"We need to play as many Division I teams as we can this spring in order to prepare our freshmen, and great competition during the regular season is the best way to prepare for post-season play," said Lampman.
Richard Bland will play non-region home doubleheaders against NJCAA Division II opponents Hagerstown (Md.) on Feb. 17 at 12 p.m., CCBC Catonsville (Md.) on March 1 at 2 p.m. and Southern Maryland on March 7 at 2 p.m. Additional non-region home doubleheaders include Division III Lehigh Carbon (Pa.) on March 5 at 4 p.m., first-year USCAA member Stratford on April 4 at 4 p.m. and Bryant & Stratton on April 11 at 3 p.m. The Statesmen will play road doubleheaders at Bryant & Stratton on March 4 at 1 p.m. and Stratford on March 14 at 2 p.m. Bryant & Stratton is a first-year program, as well, and will gain Region 10 eligibility in 2019.
"The Maryland programs are always well-coached and good competition for us," said Lampman.
The Region 10 Softball Championship is scheduled for May 3-5 at Springwood Park in Burlington, North Carolina.
Richard Bland finished 2017 with an overall record of 25-21, including 16-8 in Region 10, while advancing to the post-season Region 10 Tournament Championship for only the second time in program history. The Statesmen placed four individuals on the All-Region 10 Team, and established new program records for games (46), batting average (.374), at bats (1356), runs (384), hits (507), home runs (29), doubles (104), RBIs (320), total bases (732), slugging percentage (.540) and on base percentage (.436). The 25 wins are the second-most in program history.
As mentioned, it all gets underway on Friday, Feb. 16, at 2 p.m. with the home doubleheader against Harford at the RBC Softball Field.