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UCF Softball to Play in ESPN St. Pete-Clearwater Elite Invitational

FSU, Texas, Michigan, Tennessee part of schedule

Karissa Ornelas Softball, UCF Softball Photo Courtesy: UCF Athletics

On Thursday, the Clearwater-St. Pete Invitational Tournament, which is the marquee college softball tournament of the regular season, announced its schedule for this year’s edition which will take place between February 17-20. The UCF Knights will be one of the 16 teams in the field.

The Knights’ first game of the tournament will be against Wisconsin on Thursday, February 17th, at 1 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPNU.

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On Friday, UCF will play two games, starting with Michigan at 3 p.m. on ESPN+. The Wolverines will be heavy favorites to win the Big Ten and likely ranked in Top 15, led by legendary Head Coach Carol Hutchins, who will come into the 2022 season just 5 wins behind Arizona’s Mike Candrea for the most all-time in College Softball with 1,669. The Knights defeated the Wolveries back in 2020 in Los Angeles.

Later that day, UCF will take on Texas Tech at 6 p.m. on ESPN+.

Cindy Ball-Malone enters her 4th season at UCF
Image Courtesy: UCF Athletics

On Saturday, UCF will take on Tennessee and Texas, who both figure to be top-15 teams going into the season. The Vols game will be at 10:30 a.m. on ESPN+ while the Texas game will be at 7 p.m. on the Longhorn Network.

UCF will conclude the tournament on Sunday by taking on Florida State in a rematch from 2021 Tallahassee Regional Final. The game will air on ESPN+ at 12:30 p.m. The Seminoles made the Women’s College World Series championship series in 2021.

UCF will likely face four top Top-25 teams in Clearwater including potentially a couple of top ten teams.

This is part of a challenging UCF schedule in 2022 which will open at home against Georgia, who made the Women’s College World Series, as well as Minnesota, Fresno State, and Longwood.