UPLAND, Ind. – The 2016 Crossroads League softball tournament is set to begin Thursday, May 5. The eight-team event will be hosted by top-seeded Marian University (39-8, 31-4 CL) May 5-7. Taylor will also host games on Thursday of the double elimination tournament as the sixth seed, due to field conditions at Indiana Wesleyan University, where opening day games were originally going to be played.
Taylor (26-26, 17-19 CL) will face No. 3 IWU (38-14, 26-10 CL) for its first game at 2 p.m. on Thursday. No. 2 seed Huntington (33-15, 26-10 CL) and No. 7 seed Mount Vernon Nazarene (22-27, 15-19 CL) will play at noon Thursday, prior to the TU and Wildcats matchup. The winners of the 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. games at TU will face off for a second game at 4 p.m., and at 6 p.m. the two losing teams from the earlier games will meet.
In Indianapolis, Marian is set to play No. 8 seed University of Saint Francis (20-26, 14-20 CL) at 12 p.m. on Thursday. No. 4 seed Spring Arbor University (32-24, 22-14 CL) and No. 5 seed Grace College (29-25, 20-16 CL) will follow at 2 p.m. The winning teams from the 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. games at Marian will meet at 4 p.m. Thursday and the losers will face off at 6 p.m. After Thursday's games are complete at both host sites, two of the eight Crossroads League members will be eliminated from title contention.
The Trojans are looking to bounce back from a four-game losing streak, falling at Spring Arbor and Grace in doubleheaders. Taylor was on a six-game winning streak before its games against SAU, defeating USF, Bethel and Grace at home on Gudakunst Field last week. TU is 0-4 against Indiana Wesleyan this season.
Friday will feature single games at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. at Marian to determine the three teams who will challenge for the title on Saturday, May 7. An 11 a.m. game Saturday at Marian will leave just two teams remaining for the championship matchup, which is set to take place at 1 p.m. with another game scheduled for 3 p.m., if necessary, to determine the tournament champion.
Ranked 17th nationally, the host Knights have already secured one of the Crossroads League's two automatic bids to the NAIA National Tournament. The remaining seven teams will be battling for a tournament championship and a second bid to nationals.
The Trojan Sports Network will be providing an audio broadcast for all Taylor games at the Taylor portal, which is provided above. Further updates can be viewed by following @TaylorTrojans on Twitter, or by following the Tournament Central page provided above.