This Week in Pac-10 Softball (5/9/01)

May 9, 2001

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The Pac-10 will conclude its regular season this week. The race for the Conference Crown has been narrowed down to two teams (ARIZONA and UCLA). ARIZONA can clinch the outright title and receive the Conference's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament by defeating UCLA this Friday (May 11). In other Pac-10 action this weekend, WASHINGTON will close out its season with the Arizona swing while CALIFORNIA and STANFORD travel to OREGON and OREGON STATE. . . The NCAA Selection show will take place this Sunday (May 13) at 5:30 PST and will be televised on Fox Sports Net. . . ARIZONA remains the No. 1 team in the country, followed by No. 2 UCLA, No. 4 STANFORD, No. 6 CALIFORNIA, No. 9 ARIZONA STATE, No. 12 WASHINGTON and No. 14 OREGON STATE.

How the Conference Can Be Won

ARIZONA CAN WIN IF THEY. . . Beat UCLA. (or) Lose to UCLA, then win two versus WASHINGTON. (or) Lose to UCLA, then win one game versus WASHINGTON while the Bruins lose one game at ARIZONA STATE.

UCLA CAN WIN IF THEY. . . Pull off an ARIZONA/ARIZONA STATE sweep (3-0) while ARIZONA loses twice (this would give the Bruins the share of the Pac-10 Title and the NCAA automatic bid due to UCLA's 2-1 record against the Wildcats this season). (or) Win three games this weekend while ARIZONA loses three (this would give the Bruins the Pac-10 Title outright).

THIS WEEK's SCHEDULE

Wed., May 9Portland St. at OREGON (DH)

Fri., May 11CALIFORNIA at OREGON, 1 p.m.STANFORD at OREGON ST., 2 p.m.UCLA at ARIZONA., 7 p.m.WASHINGTON at ARIZONA ST., 7 p.m.

Sat., May 12CALIFORNIA at OREGON ST., Noon (DH)STANFORD at OREGON, 1 p.m. (DH)UCLA at ARIZONA ST., 7 p.m. (DH)WASHINGTON at ARIZONA, 7 p.m. (DH)

Sun., May 13NCAA Selection Show, 5:30 PST (Fox Sports Net)(48-Team Field)

LAST WEEK's RESULTS

Wed., May 2Portland St. 1, OREGON ST. 0 (Game 1)OREGON ST. 8, Portland St. 0 (Game 2)STANFORD 11, Sacramento St. 0 (Game 1)STANFORD 3, Sacramento St. 2 (Game 2)UCLA 4, WASHINGTON 3

Thurs., May 3OREGON 10, UC Riverside 0 (Game 1)OREGON 9, UC Riverside 1 (Game 2)OREGON ST. 4, Portland St. 2

Fri., May 4ARIZONA 5, CALIFORNIA 0ARIZONA ST. 4, STANFORD 3 (8 innings)UCLA 6, OREGON 4WASHINGTON 2, OREGON ST. 1

Sat., May 5ARIZONA 8, STANFORD 1ARIZONA ST. 3, CALIFORNIA 2 (9 innings)WASHINGTON 11, OREGON 0UCLA 4, OREGON ST. 0

Sun., May 6ARIZONA 5, STANFORD 3 (15 innings)ARIZONA ST. 5, CALIFORNIA 1WASHINGTON 6, OREGON 2UCLA 4, OREGON ST. 1

USA TODAY/NFCA POLL (May 9)

1. ARIZONA (25) 2. UCLA (2) 3. LSU 4. STANFORD 5. Oklahoma 6. CALIFORNIA 7. Alabama 8. Notre Dame 9. ARIZONA ST.10. CS Fullerton11. Nebraska12. WASHINGTON13. DePaul14. OREGON ST.15. Iowa16. Florida St.17. Fresno St.18. Pacific19. La.-Lafayette W Texas St.21. Michigan22. South Carolina23. CS Northridge Massachusetts25. Kansas

PAC-10 PLAYER/PITCHER OF THE WEEK

ARIZONA STATE third baseman Phelan Wright has been named Pac-10 Player of the Week while her teammate Erica Beach was named Pitcher of the Week for Apr. 30 - May 6, Commissioner Tom Hansen announced.

Wright, a freshman from Los Alamitos, Calif., was a main contributor in ASU going 3-0 against third-ranked Stanford and fifth-ranked California. Overall, Wright went 4-for-8 (.500) with a double, home run, run scored, three RBI and three walks. In the field, she was perfect with 12 successful chances.

Beach, a junior from Scottsdale, Ariz., posted two of the three Sun Devil victories over the weekend. Beach recorded her first win over Stanford (May 4), giving up just two runs in seven innings. She followed that performance with a victory in relief over California (May 5). Overall, Beach pitched 16 innings, allowing three earned runs and striking out five. She now has 16 wins, tying her career-high.

It is the first weekly honor for Wright while Beach garners her fourth award. Arizona State has now received 32 honors all-time.

Also nominated for Player of the Week were: Toni Mascarenas, ARIZ. Brynnen Guthrie, OSU. Sarah Beeson, STAN. Stacey Nuveman, UCLA. Kim DePaul, WASH.

Also nominated for Pitcher of the Week were: Jennie Finch, ARIZ.

AROUND THE PAC-10

Arizona - Arizona has now gone deep 108 times this season, extending its NCAA record. UA is averaging 2.02 home runs per game, which is on pace to shatter the NCAA record of 1.39 homers per game. . . The team has played 16 five-inning mercy rule games and four six-inning run-rule games. . . The Wildcats finished their final road trip of the season last week in the Bay Area. They finished 11-2 on the road. . . Junior Jennie Finch won all three games the Wildcats played in this week, including a five-hit shutout at Cal (May 4) a three-hitter against Stanford (May 5) and 10 shutout innings in relief at the Cardinal (May 6). Finch gave up a home run to Stanford's Kira Ching on May 5, the first she has allowed since March 23 -- breaking her streak at 12 games. It is also the only earned run she has given up in her last 93 innings pitched. Finch is now 26-0 and carries a season ERA of 0.25 (first in the nation), with 236 strikeouts. . . Senior Toni Mascarenas hit .364 last week (4-for-11) with two homers and five RBI. She leads the 'Cats with 18 home runs and 66 RBI.

Arizona State - ASU swept the Pac-10 Player/Pitcher of the week awards for the second time this year. The Sun Devils last accomplished that feat back in 1999. They lead the Conference with six POW awards this season. . . Arizona State is 9-3 on the road this year compared to last season's mark of 5-7. . . The Sun Devils are 24-4 when they score first. . . The team is 5-4 in one run games and pull a 30-8 mark when they play during the day. . . Freshman Phelan Wright not only garnered this week's Pac-10 Player of the Week award, but also took home NFCA Player of the Week honors for her efforts. Over the last 31 games, Wright has boosted her batting average to a team-best .408, good for fifth in the Pac-10 and 22nd in the country. Over this period, Wright has batted .495 (49-for-99). . . Junior Erica Beach needs one more win to set a new career record (17).

California - The Bears still need three more victories to match the school record of 51 wins in a season set in 1999. . . Cal ranks third in the Conference and 11th nationally in ERA (1.00). . . California also ranks third in the Pac-10 and seventh nationally in fielding percentage (.974). . . The Bears are hitting .303 with runners on base and .337 with the bases loaded. . . Cal has the best strikeout/walk ratio in the Conference at 6.0. . . Sophomore Veronica Nelson now has 80 walks this season, just eight away from breaking the NCAA record she set last year. Nelson continues to rank nationally in home runs at No. 10, averaging 0.30 homers per game (19 total). . . Junior Jocelyn Forest ranks nationally in strikeouts (fourth, 10.7), ERA (12th, 0.67) and victories (T19th, 25).

Oregon - The Ducks have picked off 6 runners this season. . . UO successfully advances the runners 46 percent of the time. . . The Ducks have hit 36 home runs. . . Oregon hit two grand slams last week (Custer, Vidlund). . . Sophomore Andrea Vidlund has a team-leading 10 home runs this season, giving her 11 career homers. The mark puts her two shy of breaking the top-10 all-time in Oregon history. . . Junior transfer Kristi Hall has started just 14 games for the Ducks, but has been on a tear as of late. In Game 1 of Oregon's doubleheader with UC Riverside (May 3), Hall hit her third double of the season and followed that performance by hitting two home runs in Game 2. She has scored nine runs in 29 appearances and has five RBI. . . Sophomore Alyssa Laux now owns the school record for being hit by a pitch (18).

Oregon State - The Beavers have equaled last year's win total of 40. With eight more wins, OSU will break the school's single-season record for victories. . . Oregon State hits .397 with the bases full. . . OSU pinch hitters are batting .310 (13-for-42), which ranks second in the Conference. . . The Beavers have a team ERA of 1.49. . . Junior Crystal Draper is currently tied for 15th in the country in victories with 26. She has started a Conference-leading 34 games and has posted 179 strikeouts in 236. 1 innings of work. . . Senior Shawna Feldt ranks sixth in the Pac-10 in doubles with 12 while her teammate Clare Burnum ranks tied for seventh with 11. Feldt and Burnum also have three triples a piece, good enough for third in the Conference.

Stanford - With a win in the second game of a doubleheader against Sacramento State, the Cardinal broke the school record for wins in a season with 46. . . The Cardinal ERA is 1.24, down from last year's 1.38 mark. . . Stanford pitching has only allowed 14 home runs this season. . . The Cardinal has posted a 19-4 record at home this year and a 20-2-1 record on a neutral field. . . Junior Sarah Beeson hit .471 (8-for-17) in five games last week. With her four doubles and six RBI, Beeson broke the Stanford single-season record for RBI (62) and tied the season record for doubles (20), which leads the Pac-10. . . Junior Jessica Mendoza is batting .407. If she finishes the season over .400, it would be the third consecutive year Mendoza has accomplished the feat. Before her, no Cardinal player had even hit the prestigious mark.

UCLA - The Bruins lead the Conference in fewest homers allowed with nine. . . UCLA's current 11-game winning streak is its second longest of the season. . . The Bruin's 4-3 win at Washington last Wednesday was the team's 50th victory of the season. It marks the seventh 50-win season in school history. UCLA has achieved the 60-win plateau twice (1990, 1999). . . Sophomore Natasha Watley has scored a Bruin school record 69 runs this season in addition to her 44 stolen bases, a mark that ranks sixth on the Pac-10 single season list. . . In four game starts last week, junior Stacey Nuveman hit .667, going 6-for-9 with four runs scored, and two home runs, one a three-run shot at 12th-ranked Washington (May 2) and the other a two-run homer on May 6 against 14th-ranked Oregon State. That led to a 1.333 slugging percentage and a .750 on-base percentage. Defensively, Nuveman was perfect on 26 chances (23 PO, 3 A) behind the plate, throwing out the only base-runner who tried to steal, and picking off a runner at first base in Sunday's game (May 6) against Oregon State.

Washington - Washington has eight pinch hits this season, ranking fourth in the Conference. . . Righthanded batters hit just .187 against Husky pitching. . . UW freshman hurler Tia Bollinger pitched in all five of the team's games last week, starting the last four. With her 32-5 record, she is within two of the school record for wins in a season (34), set by Jennifer Spediacci in 2000. Bollinger could also set the school record for most innings pitched in a season this weekend with 248.0 so far in 2001, just 6.1 innings behind Stephanie Burns (254.1, 1993). . . Senior Kelly Hauxhurst has reached base at least once in 51 of 55 games. She has a hit in 45 of 55 games and currently owns a nine game hitting streak after hitting in seven and 13 consecutive games earlier this season. . . In Washington's 6-2 win over Oregon (May 6), junior Becky Simpson hit an inside-the-park home run.

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