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Aggie softballers relaxed, ready

SAN ANGELO, Texas  Cameron's softball team is in a good position as it enters the Lone Star Conference tournament today, full of confidence but with little or no pressure that comes with a higher seed.

The Aggies will battle No. 15-ranked Tarleton State at 1:30 p.m. at Angelo State's Mayer Field. The tournament actually begins at 11 a.m. with Texas A&M-Commerce meeting Texas A&M-Kingsville. 

At 4 p.m. the semifinals begin with No. 2 seeded West Texas playing the Commerce-Kingsville winner. Should the Aggies upset Tarleton State, they would then face top-seeded Angelo State at 6:30 p.m.

The title game will be at 2 p.m. Saturday.

CU coach Dennis Furr was upbeat Wednesday as he talked about the event, and even though his Aggies are 4-11 against the rest of the tournament field and just 1-2 against Tarleton State, he's brimming with confidence.

"We don't have any pressure on us because Tarleton is seeded higher than us," he said. "Also, we're pretty well locked in when it comes to the (NCAA) regional. Tarleton is seeded fifth and we're sixth in the regional rankings, so even if we'd lose we'd still probably hold our spot."

It's actually a strange season in that the Heartland Conference doesn't have the normal strength in numbers, as the best team is St. Mary's which is ranked ninth and would need to win its conference tournament to advance. And while Colorado Mesa of the Rocky Mountain Conference leads the rankings at 43-3, after that come five Lone Star teams: Angelo State (45-7), West Texas (36-10), A&M-Commerce (38-8), Tarleton (45-8) and Cameron (30-17). 

Regis (Colo.) and Colorado Christian both from the Rocky Mountain Conference round out the top eight that would comprise the field if the playoffs started today.

Tarleton provides a stiff challenge for the Aggies as the TexAnns are third in the LSC with a .352 batting average and have scored 365 runs and have 67 home runs on the season. Tanna Huie leads TSU and is fifth in the conference with a .416 batting average, while five other batters are hitting over .300 for Tarleton State. 

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