Softball Heads South For Fresno State Tournament

March 8, 2001

CORVALLIS, Ore. -

SOFTBALL MOVES UP TWO SPOTS IN POLL TO No. 14, BEAVERS TRAVEL TO SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA FOR UCLA/CS NORTHRIDGE TOURNEY

Friday March 9, 2001
No. 15 OSU vs Colorado State - 9 a.m. PST, Fresno, CA
No. 15 OSU vs Cal Poly - 1 p.m. PST, Fresno, CA
(Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic)

Saturday March 10, 2001
No. 15 OSU at No. 7 Fresno State - 3 p.m. PST, Fresno, CA
No. 15 OSU vs No. 1 UCLA - 7 p.m. PST, Fresno, CA
(Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic)

Sunday March 11, 2001
No. 15 OSU vs New Mexico - 9 a.m. PST, Fresno, CA
No. 15 OSU vs No. 11 DePaul - 1 p.m. PST, Fresno, CA
(Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic)

A GLANCE AT THE FIELD: Oregon State will face three opponents for the first time this weekend in Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic (Cal Poly, UCLA and New Mexico) and will meet a trio of opponents for a second go-around (Colorado State, Fresno State and DePaul). OSU has a 3-0-1 record against the field heading into the weekends match-ups.

COLORADO STATE, AGAIN: Oregon State will face Colorado State for the third time in six days when the teams square off in the opening game of the Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic. OSU blasted the Rams, 9-0 and 8-0 last week in the CSUN/UCLA Tournament. The Beavers are now 2-1 in the all-time series against Colorado State with Kirk Walker at the helm.

FRESNO STATE REMATCH: No. 7 Fresno State is looking to avenge a 3-1 loss against Oregon State on Feb. 24 in the NFCA Leadoff Classic. Crystal Draper allowed just five hits in the teams first meeting while teammates Shawna Feldt and Shelly Prochaska each went 2-for-3 on the day. OSU's win against the Bulldogs was just the second with head coach Kirk Walker at the helm. The Beavers are 2-6 against FSU under Walker and trail in the overall series, 5-15.

BEAVERS AND BRUINS: UCLA and Oregon State will meet for the first time this season on Saturday in the Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic. The Bruins swept the series with the Beavers (3-0) in 2000. No. 1 ranked UCLA brings a perfect 28-0 record into the tournament. The Bruins lead the all-time series with Oregon State 56-4. The Beavers are 4-23 against UCLA with Kirk Walker at the helm.

STAY DRY: Sunday's game between No. 11 DePaul and Oregon State will pit the Blue Demons and Beavers against each other for the second time this season. The squads met on Feb. 25 in the NFCA Leadoff Classic but the game was called on account of rain after eight scoreless innings and went into the books as a tie. Oregon State trails the all-time series with DePaul 2-3-1 but the Beavers are 2-2-1 against the Blue Demons under head coach Kirk Walker.

WHAT HAPPENED IN LOS ANGELES: Oregon State finished its most disappointing weekend of the season with a 3-3 record at the CSUN/UCLA Tournament. The Beavers struggled offensively, losing a pair of games to Cal State Northridge on the opening day of action. OSU recovered with a pair of 5-inning shutouts against Colorado State and then split a pair of games against South Florida. Senior Shawna Feldt was the bright spot on the weekend. Feldt awakened from an early season hitting slump to lead the Beavers with 11 hits in 22 at bats over the weekend and raised her batting average to .300 for the first time this season.

NATIONALLY RANKED: After last weekends 3-3 finish in the CSUN/UCLA Tournament, Oregon State dropped one spot to No. 15 in the USA Today/NFCA poll for the week of March 5. Pac-10 Conference foe, UCLA is currently ranked No. 1 while Arizona ranks No. 2. The Beavers garnered a No. 12 final ranking after last season's 40-21-1 record.

FACING THE BEST: Oregon State finished the 2000 campaign with a 12-17 record against nationally ranked opponents. The No. 15 ranked Beavers are 4-2-1 against ranked teams so far this season. OSU's record will be put to the test this weekend at Hedrick's Hallowell Chevrolet Classic in Fresno, CA. The Beavers will face No. 7 ranked Fresno State for the second time this season as well as No. 11 DePaul. Oregon State will also battle No. 1 UCLA on Saturday night.

TOUGH CONFERENCE: Three Pacific-10 Conference teams are currently undefeated, Arizona, UCLA and California have a combined record of 73-0 so far this season.

BACK ON TRACK: Senior Shawna Feldt led Oregon State in batting last weekend at the CSUN/UCLA Tournament. Feldt finished the six games hitting .500 (11-22), belting a homerun and two doubles. The shortstop recorded a team-high .727 slugging percentage and knocked in five runs. Feldt was no stranger on the basepaths, scoring a team-high seven runs for the Beavers. After struggling at the plate earlier in the season, Feldt has upped her season batting average to .300 and leads the team in hits with 27. Feldt ranks second on the squad in RBI with 14, second in doubles with five, and second in runs scored with 17.

HITTING STREAK: Senior Shawna Feldt currently has an eight-game hitting streak heading into Friday's contest against Colorado State. Earlier this season junior Michelle Chariton put together an eight-game skein. Chariton currently has the second longest hitting streak for OSU, having reached base safely in four consecutive games.

GETTING THE 'K': Oregon State's pitchers have combined for 155 strikeouts over the first 26 games of the season, an average of nearly six K's per game. The even more impressive number is that OSU's hurlers have walked just 44 batters all season.

FAB-FIVE, ELITE EIGHT: Over the first 26 games of the season, Oregon State has a perfect 3-0 record in games lasting just five innings and a 3-0-1 record in games that have gone eight innings.

CHARITON TAKES OVER: Junior Michelle Chariton continues to improve in each at-bat for the Beavers. Chariton has stepped up her game tremendously in the opening 26 contests this season and currently leads the squad in hitting. Chariton, a career .250 hitter, ranks first on the team with a .338 batting average and has 23 hits in 68 at bats this season. The 5-7 outfielder had 14 hits in 52 games as a sophomore and just four RBI. Chariton has already knocked in 10 runs this season and her five stolen bases are tied with Clare Burnum for the team lead. Chariton has 17 swipes in her career.

HOMER HAPPY: Sophomore Steph Adams remains tied for third place in the OSU record book with Kim Herman (1996-99), for career homeruns. Adams has smashed three longballs on the season and has a career total of 10. The sophomore first baseman/outfielder inches ever closer to Jenni Jodoin's career total of 14 homeruns.

ON THE BASEPATH: Senior Brooke Rutschman recorded her first stolen base of the season last week against Colorado State. Rutschman is currently in third place in the OSU record books for stolen bases in her career. The centerfielder's 23 stolen bases are just eight steals away from passing Denise Smail (1976-79) and moving into second place.

HOFFMAN KEEPS WINNING: Freshman pitcher Monica Hoffman was 2-1 last week in the CSUN/UCLA Tournament. Hoffman pitched a pair of shutouts and improved her overall record to 5-4 on the season. Hoffman currently leads the Beavers and ranks ninth in the Pac-10 Conference with a 1.09 ERA. She has allowed just 16 runs in 70.2 innings of work. The Central Catholic grad has struck out 62 batters on the season to rank 10th in the conference.

FAST FACT: Oregon State leads the Pac-10 Conference with 23 sacrifice bunts.

TOUGH D: The 2000 Beavers set a school record with a .973 fielding percentage, committing just 47 errors in 1,270 attempts. Oregon State has committed 21 errors in the first 26 games this season and currently has a .972 fielding percentage, while its opponents have committed 41 errors for a .950 fielding percentage.

LEFT IS ALL-RIGHT: Junior Michelle Chariton is batting a whopping .429 in seven at bats against left-handed pitchers this season. Chariton also leads the Beavers in batting average against right-handed hurlers, hitting .338.

COMING UP BIG: Sophomore Shelly Prochaska leads Oregon State with 47 at-bats with runners on base and a .383 batting average. Prochaska has been to the plate a team-high 35 times with runners in scoring position and is hitting an impressive .457, belting a team-high 15 RBI including seven with two outs.

IN THE CLUTCH: Junior Michelle Notaro , a career .207 hitter, is leading Oregon State with a .353 batting average when there are two outs.

TRIPLE-TIME: Oregon State has already doubled the number of triples it hit last season. The Beavers have blasted four three-baggers in the first 20 games while hitting just two triples during the 2000 season.

DRAPER PICKS UP WIN: After shutting out Colorado State last Saturday, junior pitcher Crystal Draper picked up the 43rd win of her career which ranks fifth in the OSU record book. Draper is slowly moving closer to Trina Marvin's 48 career victories which ranks fourth on the Beavers' all-time list. Draper leads the Pac-10 Conference with 13 starts this season.

INJURY REPORT: Sophomore second baseman Brynnen Guthrie remains sidelined after undergoing reconstructive shoulder surgery in October. The honorable mention Pacific 10 Conference all-star is expected to return to the line-up later this season.

IN THE DUGOUT: Third-year assistant coach Jenni Condon returns to Oregon State after a one-year stint at UNLV last season. Condon helped lead the Beavers to their first NCAA Regional Tournament appearance in 1999. Heather Chinn-Smith is back for her second season on the sidelines as an assistant after finishing her playing career with Oregon State in 1999.

THE WORD ON WALKER: Head coach Kirk Walker is in his seventh season at the helm for the Beavers. Walker, a graduate of UCLA, has turned around Oregon State's softball program to make it a contender on a national scale. Walker has an overall coaching record of 189-195-3 and a 42-114 mark in the Pacific-10 Conference. Prior to his arrival at Oregon State, Walker spent 11 seasons at national powerhouse UCLA as a manager and assistant coach. During his time in Westwood, the Bruins won six NCAA titles and made 10 appearances in the College World Series.

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