Drake is vying for its fourth MVC Tournament crown in program history (1993, 1994 and 2008). The top eight teams in the final regular season standings qualify for the MVC Tournament. The Bulldogs have qualified for the MVC Tournament 12 seasons out of the 14 that head coach Rich Calvert has guided the program. The winner of the three-day, single-elimination tournament earns the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament, where Drake has been to two twice, back in 1994 and 2008. CARBONDALE, Ill. – The Drake University softball team will play its first game at the 2016 Missouri Valley Conference Tournament hosted by Southern Illinois Friday at 6:30 p.m. against the winner of Friday afternoon’s quarterfinal action between Evansville or Illinois State versus UNI. The MVC Tournament schedule was adjusted to due rain Thursday morning that pushed all the games back. Every game of the MVC Tournament will be broadcast online via The Valley On ESPN3. Drake (29-23, 17-8 MVC) won five of its final six regular season conference games to clinch the tournament’s two seed. The Bulldogs earned an automatic berth in the semifinals with the top-two finish. Wichita State won the 2016 regular season title, one season after Drake captured the regular season crown. This season, Drake endured up-and-down streaks in conference play as the Bulldogs won their first 12 league games then dropped seven straight before rebounding with wins in five of the final six games. If Drake wins Friday night, the Bulldogs advance to Saturday’s title game that will start at 1 p.m.Print Friendly Version Drake swept Evansville in a three-game series to start MVC play, split a weather-shortened two-game series with Illinois State and UNI took out of three games over the Bulldogs.