No. 19 Lady Owls heading to Michigan for NAIA Opening Round

The William Woods University Lady Owls softball team will be trekking north for its appearance in the NAIA Opening Round.

William Woods learned Tuesday night it will be heading to Grand Rapids, Michigan, and will be the No. 2 seed in the Davenport bracket. The Lady Owls (39-15) will face host and No. 3 seed Davenport University (36-8) at noon Monday in the first-round of the double-elimination format.

In the second game at 2 p.m., fourth-ranked and top-seeded Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) (46-3-1) will meet No. 4 seed Huntington (Ind.) (31-21).

William Woods — which moved up a spot to No. 19 earlier this week in the NAIA’s final regular-season poll — received the American Midwest Conference’s automatic bid to the national tournament after winning the regular-season title. The Lady Owls, winners of 13 in a row and 22 of their last 23, followed that up by capturing their second straight conference tournament championship.

Davenport received an automatic bid to the national tournament by winning the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference’s regular-season and conference tournament titles.

Meanwhile, William Woods senior MacKenzie Bowden was named both the NAIA and AMC pitcher of the week Tuesday. Bowden earned the double honor for the second time in less than a month, after being selected for both on April 8.

Bowden (20-7) was singled out this time when she was named AMC pitcher of the year while helping direct the Lady Owls to the conference tournament championship. She went 2-0 in the tournament with one save, a sparse 0.84 ERA and a remarkable 23 strikeouts in just 16 2/3 innings.

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