Rebel Softball Releases 2018 Schedule|
Nov. 15, 2017
2018 UNLV Softball Schedule | Home Tournament Schedules | @UNLVSoftball
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - UNLV softball has released its 2018 schedule, announced head coach Kristie Fox Wednesday. The 2018 campaign will feature a 50-game slate, with 26 contests against non-conference opponents and 24 games against league opponents as part of eight three-game series in Mountain West play.
The Rebels will participate in five tournaments over the first five weeks of the season, playing 26 non-league games from Feb. 9 - March 11. Three of the tournaments - the Sportco Kick Off Classic, the Marucci Classic and the Rebel Classic - will be hosted by UNLV in Las Vegas, while the Rebels will head to Houston and Phoenix for the Houston Tournament and the Grand Canyon Lopes Up Classic, respectively, to round out the pre-league schedule. Conference action begins the weekend of March 16.
The spring season will be the first at UNLV for Fox, who was hired to lead the program over the summer.
"I'm very much looking forward to my first season at UNLV," said Fox. " We had a great fall and we can't wait to get out there in the spring. We will see strong competition over the first portion of the season that will help us prepare for a very competitive Mountain West schedule. The three home tournaments also give us a great opportunity to play on our field at Eller Media Stadium in front of our fans."
This year’s schedule has the Rebels taking on six teams that appeared in the 2017 NCAA Tournament - DePaul, Fresno State, Minnesota, New Mexico State, San Jose State and Washington. That lineup includes conference foes in the Bulldogs and Spartans but also a 2017 Women's College World Series participant in the Huskies, who are expected to enter 2018 as one of the top teams in the country.
Overall, the Rebels will play 26 non-conference contests against 23 opponents from 12 different conferences. The Rebels will have two games against Power 5 schools - Minnesota of the Big 10 and Washington of the Pac-12; two against Big East foes DePaul and Syracuse; and two against Ivy League competition - Yale and Princeton. UNLV will play four teams from the Western Athletic Conference (Utah Valley, Seattle University, Grand Canyon, New Mexico State); three from the Big Sky (Southern Utah, Idaho State, Portland State); two each from the Summit League (North Dakota State, South Dakota), the Missouri Valley Conference (Bradley, Valparaiso) and Conference USA (UTSA, UTEP); and one each from the Mid-American Conference (Buffalo), Big West (Hawaii), and American Athletic Conference (Houston).
The Scarlet & Gray will open the year with two straight home tournaments, beginning with five games in the Sportco Kick Off Classic Feb. 9-11, where they will face North Dakota State, Creighton, Minnesota, Utah Valley and Southern Utah. The following weekend, UNLV will take on Idaho State, Buffalo, UTEP, Bradley, Seattle and Hawaii Feb. 16-19 as part of the newly titled Marucci Classic, which was formerly known as the DeMarini Desert Classic. The name change reflects the new agreements UNLV softball and UNLV baseball have with the sporting goods company as the Rebels' official gear and equipment provider. The Sportco Kick Off Classic will feature six teams total with all games being played at Eller Media Stadium, while the Marucci Classic will have 18 participants with games being played at both Eller Media Stadium and three fields at Stephanie Lynn Park in Henderson, Nevada.
After two weeks at home, the Rebels will head out on the road for the first time, going to Houston, Texas, Feb. 23-26 for five games against Syracuse, University of Texas-San Antonio, Yale and tournament-host Houston. The next weekend, UNLV will be closer to home, playing at a Grand Canyon-hosted tournament in Phoenix March 2-4, where it will take on South Dakota, Princeton, Valparaiso and the Antelopes.
The final tournament on the schedule is the Rebel Classic, set for March 9-11 at Eller Media Stadium. UNLV opens the weekend with a doubleheader against DePaul and Washington, then faces New Mexico State the following morning -- a stretch of three of the six 2017 NCAA Tournament foes they will face in 2018 -- before wrapping up non-league play with two contests against Portland State.
UNLV will begin Mountain West play on the road, going to New Mexico for three games March 16-18. Alternating the home and away series from last season, the Rebels will host Utah State (March 23-25), San Diego State (Apr. 6-8), Nevada, Reno (Apr. 27-29) and Colorado State (May 10-12) in the regular-season finale. In addition to New Mexico, UNLV will face defending Mountain West Champion San Jose State (March 29-31), Boise State (Apr. 13-15) and Fresno State (May 4-6) on the road in league play.
The Rebels return six regular starters from last year's squad, led by the senior duo of third baseman Jadelyn Yadao-Valdez and all-conference performing outfielder Janine Petmecky. The two combined for 92 hits, 39 runs and 36 RBI in 2017.