POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – The Marist softball team (21-22, 11-4 MAAC) will close out its regular season this weekend, as the Red Foxes host Canisius (16-28, 6-10 MAAC) and Saint Peter’s (10-38, 4-12 MAAC) for four Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) matchups.

With Marist’s sweep over Siena yesterday, the Red Foxes clinched a spot in next weekend’s MAAC Championship Tournament. The team currently sits in second place in the conference, as it enters the final weekend of regular season competition.

Throughout the season, junior Taylor Kuzma (Freehold, N.J.) leads the team with a .382 batting average, and 42 hits. She and sophomore Maureen Duddy (San Mateo, Calif.) also lead with 32 runs apiece, as freshman Rebecca Freeman (Robbinsville, N.J.) had notched eight homers for Marist and sophomore Kyrsten Van Natta (Maplewood, N.J.) has added 35 RBIs.

Defensively, senior Alyssa Zahka (Lexington, Mass.) has tallied 198 putouts, while Van Natta has added 100 assists and Kuzma leads with a perfect 1.000 field percentage. Junior Melanie White (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) leads Marist in the pitching circle with a 3.12 ERA, as senior Paige Lewis (Temecula, Calif.) boasts a 10-6 record for the Red Foxes.

Marist in the MAAC

As of April 29, Marist was third in the MAAC with a .284 team batting average. Van Natta leads the conference in runs scored with 33 and stolen bases with 18 of 20 attempts, while being third in RBIs with 34. Also for the Red Foxes, Kuzma places fourth in the MAAC in batting averages, posting a .365 average with 38 hits.

Last Time Out

The Red Foxes swept Siena in a MAAC doubleheader yesterday, clinching game one 4-1 before taking the nightcap 6-5.

In game one, Kuzma led Marist with two hits and two runs in the outing. Defensively, Zahka notched nine putouts, while sophomore Nicole Cheek (Simi Valley, Calif.) added three assists. White claimed the win for Marist, improving her season record to 5-6. In seven innings, she notched eight strikeouts, and only allowed one earned run and two hits in 28 batters faced.

As game two saw a closer matchup, the Red Foxes only allowed the Saint to come within one before Lewis struck out the last batter for the win. Duddy led Marist with two runs and two hits, while Zahka, freshman Janna Korak (Huntsville, Ala.) and Freeman also added two hits apiece. In the victory, Zahka posted four of the Red Foxes’ six RBIs. Freeman claimed six outs, as Van Natta and Lewis posted two assists each. In the pitching circle, Lewis (10-6) claimed the win. In seven innings, she recorded six strikeouts in 35 batters faced.

Scouting Canisius

Canisius is coming to Poughkeepsie on a two-game losing streak, having fallen to Monmouth in a Sunday doubleheader.  The matchup against Marist will be the first game for Canisius in almost a full week, last playing on April 27.  Jessica Berzins leads the team with a .399 batting average, followed by Lindsey Silfer having a .331 average.

Scouting Saint Peter’s

Saint Peter’s is currently 10th in the MAAC, holding an 8-36 overall record, going 4-12 in the MAAC.  Before their Sunday matchup, the Peacocks will have a go against Siena in a doubleheader on Saturday afternoon.  Saint Peter’s has struggled on the road this year having only a 2-13 record away from home.

Marist will close out its regular season schedule this weekend, as the team hosts two MAAC doubleheaders. The Red Foxes will face off against Canisius at 12 p.m. on Saturday. Marist will then host Saint Peter’s on Sunday, as the team kicks off the day to celebrate the Class of 2014 for Senior Day at 11:40 a.m. First pitch will follow at noon.