May 15, 2008
After a 12-and-a-half hour road trip that included a bus drive to Sky Harbor in Phoenix, and a charter flight to New York City's JFK airport which included refueling stops in Amarillo, Tex. And Evanston, Ind., the Arizona Softball arrived at its hotel in Melville, N.Y. at 3:45 a.m. local time.
Because of their lengthy travel schedule, team practice at Hofstra has been moved back to 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, instead of the originally scheduled 1 p.m. practice slot.
Packed Field - The Pac-10 qualified seven of its eight teams for the NCAA tournament., a clear indication of why UA's 13-8 conference record helped it climb to a No. 7 overall seeding. All eight Pac-10 teams played in the 1999, 2000 and 2003 tournaments. The other selected Pac-10 teams are hosts Arizona State and UCLA, Washington (at Houston), Stanford (at Amherst, Mass.), California (at Fresno, Ccalif.) and Oregon (at Norman, Okla.).
Arizona's NCAA Appearance -- Arizona appears in its 22nd consecutive NCAA Championships and 22nd overall since 1987, all under the aegis of coach Mike Candrea or -- as is the case this year and in 2004 - under the tutelage of assistant coach Larry Ray. Softball became a Division I sport in 1982 and Arizona did not qualify for the first five tournaments but has thereafter. Arizona has won a regional 19 times to advance to the Women's College World Series, an event is has won eight times including the past two seasons. Arizona has been host 16 times -- 1988, 1990, 1992-95, 1997-2001, 2003-07. The team has traveled to NCAA Regional sites five previous times - 1987, 1989 and 1991 in tempe, 1996 in Tallahassee, Fla., and 2002 in Minneapolis.