NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) – After advancing in regional play, two of the top Division III softball teams in the country in Virginia Wesleyan and Christopher Newport will face off in a best-of-three series next Friday and Saturday for a berth in the final eight of the NCAA tournament.

The games between the two softball powers will be at Christopher Newport in Newport News, with the first game scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, May 26, followed by a 1 p.m. game Saturday, May 27 and then, if necessary, a third game at 3:30, also on Saturday.

While Virginia Wesleyan has won three national championships, Christopher Newport is coming off its first-ever national championship in 2022, and the two teams have combined to win four of the past six Division III national championships.

After CNU’s Kate Alger pitched a perfect game Friday in a 2-0 win over Roanoke, it got another strong pitching performance from Jamie Martin, with Alger coming on in relief, in another shutout win over Roanoke, this time 3-0. The Captains (29-10) scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the fifth when Bianca Palmer-Scott (Kempsville HS, Virginia Beach) stole home.

In the sixth, Abby Rochette drove in a run and Palmer-Scott reached base on a fielding error, allowing Rochette to score.

Alger was named most outstanding player of the three-day, double-elimination regional, pitching in all three games for the Captains (29-10), allowing just one hit in 9-and-a-third innings while striking out 11 and walking two. Four other CNU players – Rochette, Palmer-Scott, Martin and Kensley Hess – also made the All-Regional team.

Virginia Wesleyan (38-11), after opening regional play at home with a 6-0 win over John Jay College, fell 7-4 to TCNJ before rallying in the final game of the regional to beat TCNJ 6-2. The game had been tied 2-2 going into the seventh, but the Marlins, with the help of a three-run homer from regional most outstanding player Caitlin Myers, erupted for four runs in the top of the seventh to pull away. Lauren Bible (15-1) picked up the win in the circle, allowing five hits and just one earned run.

Now it will be two of the top Division III women’s softball teams in the country – just miles apart, playing in a best-of-three Super Regional to determine who advances. The No. 13 Marlins of Virginia Beach have won three national titles, while the No. 10 Captains are coming off a national title last season and have won 13 straight NCAA Division III tournament games.

The time and location of the matchup between Virginia Wesleyan and Christopher Newport have yet to be determined. The two teams split a March 15 doubleheader, with CNU winning the first game 6-5 and VWU winning the second, 7-4.