Oregon Softball Opens Pac-10 Season At Home

March 29, 2001

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Oregon This Week Oregon (22-17) opens the Pac-10 season at home, hosting No. 2 Arizona and No. 9 Arizona State this weekend. The Ducks will take on Arizona Friday at 2 p.m. and Arizona State Saturday (2 p.m.) and Sunday (1 p.m.).

Recently Oregon split a pair of doubleheaders with Santa Clara and St. Mary's earlier this week. In both instances, Oregon dropped the first game by a single run and rebounded with a win in Game 2.

Scouting No. 2 Arizona The Wildcats are currently on a seven game win streak and are 36-2 overall heading into conference play. They have hit 83 home runs this season -- 18 shy of the NCAA record set in 1995 by....Arizona. Five Arizona players are hitting above .400 and the team leads the conference with a .386 average. The Wildcats lead the conference in 10 batting catergories, including runs scored (324), hits (388), RBI (303), home runs (83) and doubles (60).

Scouting No. 9 Arizona State The Sun Devils (25-8) are third in the conference in batting average (.306) and have won 14 games by way of a shutout. Junior second baseman Missy Hixon is hitting .526 with runners in scoring position, while seven different players have hit a home run this season.

The Series Arizona leads the series 54-8, with the Wildcats winning the three meetings in 2000. Arizona State holds a slim 27-26 advantage over Oregon and was 1-2 against the Ducks last season.

Head Coach Rick Gamez Fifth year head coach Rick Gamez has taken the Ducks to the postseason the past three seasons and is 162-141-1 overall at Oregon. Arriving in July of 1996, Gamez took the Ducks from a 21-30 record to back-to-back 40-win seasons (1998-99) for the first time in school history. In addition, the team spent every week of 1999 ranked nationally in the top 25, finished ranked No. 25, and made a return trip to the NCAA regionals in two straight seasons for only the second time in the program's history. Altogether in 11 seasons as a head coach, Gamez's resume includes a 452-274-1 overall record, one junior college national title, one national runner-up finish, three conference championships and three additional second-place conference finishes. Gamez coached at New Mexico State for two seasons (199-96) and four seasons at Glendale Community College in Arizona. Altogether, the three-time Arizona Community College coach of the year has also seen one-year stints as interim coach at Central Arizona (1986) and New Mexico State (1985). Gamez also served as an assistant at Central Arizona from 1987-90.

Ross on the Roster Lana Ross joins the Oregon coaching staff after serving as an assistant at Blinn College in Brenham, Texas. Ross, a graduate of Oklahoma City University (1995), played at the collegiate level and also competed in Canada at the National level for the past ten years. Ross won two national championships at Oklahoma City and won two Canadian national championships.

Double Your Pleasure Junior catcher Missy Coe has eight doubles this season, which brings her career total to 40. She is now the all-time leader at Oregon, surpassing Kathy Stahl's (1993-96) record (39).

Leading The Way Wangler immediately got comfortable in the Ducks' lead off spot. She leads the team in batting average (.413), runs (29), hits (57) and stolen bases (12).

Following The Leader Sophomore Alyssa Laux follows Wangler in the second spot and is hitting .404 (42-of-104) and is second in runs (25). Laux has a .519 on base percentage and has tallied 15 RBI.

Protect Yourself Laux is making her way into the record books in other ways...after being hit by a pitch three times earlier this week, Laux has set the school record (12) for being hit.

Rescue Me Oregon has left 298 runners on base in 39 games, an average of seven runners per game. Opponents have left 242.

Ray of Light Junior Holly Ray hit two home runs in Oregon's first tournament of the season, which ties her total from her freshman season. Ray followed the opening weekend with three home runs at the Fiesta Bowl Tournament. Ray hit seven home runs in all of 2000 and now has 14 career homers.

Custer Movin' on Up Senior Triawn Custer's five home runs this season brings her career total to 31, which puts her tied for second all-time. Custer needs just two home runs to surpass Jill Robinson's (1997-2000) record (33). Custer's 24 RBI this season also moved her up in the record books -- she is now third all time with 132 RBI. She is 13 shy of the record.

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