Softball To Face No. 4 Seeded South Florida In Thursday's NCAA Regional Opener

May 16, 2001

CORVALLIS, Ore. -

No. 14 SOFTBALL MAKES THIRD CONSECUTIVE TRIP TO NCAA REGIONALS, No. 3 SEEDED BEAVERS WILL FACE No. 4 SOUTH FLORIDA ON THURSDAY IN TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA

Thursday May 17, 2001
No. 1 Alabama vs No. 6 Illinois-Chicago - 10 a.m. PDT, Tuscaloosa, AL
No. 2 Michigan vs No. 5 Chattanooga - 12:30 p.m. PDT, Tuscaloosa, AL
No. 3 OSU vs No. 4 South Florida - 3 p.m. PDT, Tuscaloosa, AL
(OSU games will be broadcast on the Internet at www.osubeavers.com)

Tournament is double elimination and runs through Sunday, May 20

A GLANCE AT SOUTH FLORIDA: No. 4 seeded South Florida brings a 41-32 overall record into its first round game with No. 3 Oregon State. The Bulls are coming off a fourth place finish at the Conference USA Tournament and are making their first Regional Tournament appearance since the 1998 season. Three USF players are batting over .300 with sophomore Renee Oursler leading the way with a .348 clip. Oursler, a shortstop, was named First Team All-Conference USA and leads the squad with 65 hits. South Florida's four pitchers combine for a 1.84 ERA while its opponents have a 2.12 ERA. Senior hurler Jessi Kowal leads the squad with a 0.99 ERA and a 22-13 record.

BEAVERS AND BULLS THIS SEASON: South Florida and Oregon State faced each other earlier this season when the teams split a pair of games at the CSUN/UCLA Tournament on March 3. USF took game one by a close 3-2 margin, holding OSU to just six hits in the contest. Freshman Monica Hoffman pitched a complete game shutout in the nightcap as the Beavers pounded 12 hits en route to a 6-0 victory. Nine Oregon State players had at least one hit in the contest with Shelly Prochaska's 3-for-4 effort leading all players. Senior Shawna Feldt finished the game batting 2-for-4 with a double and three runs scored. OSU has gone 25-15 since its first meeting with the Bulls, while USF sports a record of 29-18.

BEAVERS AGAINST THE FIELD: In a quick breakdown of series records between Oregon State and the tournament field, the lone team that the Beavers have faced this season is first round opponent South Florida. OSU has a 1-1 all-time record against the Bulls. The Beavers are a perfect 2-0 against No. 6 Illinois-Chicago and 1-0 all-time against No. 5 Chattanooga. Oregon State has not faced No. 2 Michigan with head coach Kirk Walker at the helm but the Beavers are 0-2 against the Wolverines all-time. No. 1 Alabama and OSU have never met.

FAST FACT: Just three of the teams in Oregon State's Regional enter the tournament coming off of a win. The Beavers have won three straight while Chattanooga has won nine in a row and Illinois-Chicago is riding a 13-game streak.

BEAVERS IN REGIONAL ACTION: Oregon State is making its third consecutive trip to the NCAA Regional Tournament and is looking to advance to the College World Series in Oklahoma City, OK, for the first time. OSU has a 6-4 all-time Regional Tournament record, losing in the championship game in back-to-back seasons. The Beavers were eliminated by Southern Mississippi (4-0) in their first trip to the post-season (1999) and lost a 3-2 heart breaker to eventual World Series Champion Oklahoma in 2000.IT'S NICE TO BE BACK: Thirteen Oregon State players are making a return trip to the NCAA Regional from the 2000 runner-up squad. Just two new faces, pitchers Monica Hoffman and Kaitlin Wilson, will be making their inaugural post-season appearance.

LIVE BROADCAST: Oregon State will broadcast all of its NCAA Regional Tournament games over the Internet on their athletic website - www.osubeavers.com. OSU Senior Associate Athletic Director Bob DeCarolis will announce the play-by-play and Mikiah Smith will be the color analyst.

PAC-10 POWER: Seven of the eight Pacific-10 Conference squads reached the NCAA Regional Tournament. Arizona, UCLA and Stanford each garnered the No. 1 seed and are host institutions. Washington, California and Arizona State were all selected as No. 2 seeds. Region seven in Iowa City, IA is the lone region without a Pac-10 squad.

PAC-10 WRAP UP: Oregon State finished the Pacific-10 Conference season with its second best record of all-time 10-10. With three victories to close out the season, the Beavers garnered a fifth place finish.

LOOKING BACK AT STANFORD: Oregon State knocked off No. 4 Stanford last Friday, 1-0 at the OSU Softball Complex. The Beavers scored the lone run of the contest on a second inning home run by sophomore Steph Adams. The long ball proved to be Adams' second game-winner of the season. Pitcher Crystal Draper earned her 11th shutout of the season, allowing just five hits and striking out five on the way to the victory.

LOOKING BACK AT CALIFORNIA: Oregon State swept its double-header against No. 6 California by 1-0 margins to close out the regular season. Senior Brooke Rutschman scored the game winning run in the opener when fellow senior Shawna Feldt's RBI double got the Beavers on the board in the bottom of the sixth. Game-two featured a pitchers dual between Cal's Jocelyn Forest and OSU's Crystal Draper. A scoreless tie sent the game to extra innings and the Beavers picked up the win when Feldt scored the game-winner in the bottom of the ninth after a leadoff double. The run was the 100th of Feldt's career, ranking her as OSU's all-time leader in runs scored. Draper allowed just two hits and her 28th victory of the year ties Oregon State's single-season record.

All-PACIFIC-10 CONFERENCE TEAM: Oregon State had three players gain recognition by the Pacific-10 Conference. Senior shortstop Shawna Feldt, a two-time All-Pac-10 honorable mention selection, earned Second Team All-Conference honors while junior hurler Crystal Draper earned Second Team honors after being named honorable mention as a freshman. Sophomore transfer Clare Burnum garnered honorable mention accolades as a utility player in her first season at OSU.

PAC-10 PITCHER OF THE WEEK: Junior Crystal Draper earned Pacific-10 Conference Pitcher of the Week honors for May 7-May 13. Draper, a junior from Parkdale, OR, pitched two complete game shutouts in Oregon State's victories against No. 4 ranked Stanford and No. 6 California. She faced a total of 53 batters, allowing just six hits while striking out nine. Her win against Cal was her 28th of the year, tying the OSU single season mark for victories.

NATIONALLY RANKED: Oregon State remains ranked No. 14 in the final regular season USA Today/NFCA poll released on May 9. Three Pac-10 Conference teams enter the last week of the season ranked in the top-5 with Arizona at No. 1, UCLA No. 2 and Stanford at No. 4. California, drops to No. 6 while Arizona State remains at No. 9 and Washington sits at No. 12. 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. 14 ranked Beavers are 12-15-1 against Top-25 teams so far this season.

CROSSING THE PLATE: Senior Shawna Feldt is Oregon State's all-time leader in runs scored with 100 in her career, accomplished in just three season's as a Beaver. The 5-6 shortstop scored the game-winning run against No. 6 Cal in the regular season finale and her final game at the OSU Softball Complex. Feldt led the Beavers in batting over the weekend with a .444 average (4-for-9) and two doubles. She not only scored the game-winning run against Cal but also had the game-winning RBI in the series opener.

ON A ROLL: After three consecutive victories to close out the regular season, Oregon State has surpassed last year's win total with 43 victories. The Beavers need just five more W's to break the single season record for victories set in 1999 (47-25).

GOOD ENOUGH TO KEEP IT ANOTHER WEEK: Four different Oregon State batters have driven in at least 10 RBI with two outs: Clare Burnum (12), Shelly Prochaska (11), Steph Adams (10) and Shawna Feldt (10).

LEADING THE PAC: Oregon State is tied for the lead in the Pacific-10 Conference for sacrifices. The Beavers and California each have 54 sacrifices on the season.

PAC-10 NUMBERS: Junior pitcher Crystal Draper finished the regular season leading the Pac-10 Conference in games started (36), ranks second in innings pitched (252.1), second in wins (28), fourth in batters struck out looking (47) and fifth in batters struck out (188). Freshman hurler Monica Hoffman's three saves rank in a tie for third in the conference while on the offensive end, senior Shawna Feldt ranks third in doubles (14) and sophomore Clare Burnum is tied for seventh (11). Both Feldt and Burnum have three triples on the year which ranks third in the Pac-10. Junior Michelle Chariton's 12 sacrifice bunts rank third in the conference.

HOME SWEET HOME: Oregon State wrapped up its first season of play at the OSU Softball Complex with a 7-2 record including five victories against Top-25 teams (No. 1 UCLA, No. 4 Stanford, No. 6 California (2) and No. 12 Washington).

GETTING THE 'K': Oregon State's pitchers have combined for 362 strikeouts over 66 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 110 batters all season for a 3.3 strikeout-walk ratio.

GOING LONG: Sophomore Steph Adams leads the squad in home runs this season with seven round-trippers. The former North Medford star, hit what proved to be the game-winning homer against No. 4 Stanford Friday as the Beavers beat the Cardinal 1-0. The long ball gives Adams 14 home runs in her career, which ties Jenni Jodoin (1998-00) for second place in the OSU record books. Five other Beaver players have gone yard this season and Oregon State has an 19-16 advantage in homers over its opponents.

STEPPING IT UP AT THE PLATE: Junior Michelle Chariton, a career .250 hitter, has been the Beavers' most consistent batter of the season. Chariton finished the regular season with a team-leading .299 batting average (50-for-127). All 50 of Chariton's hits have been singles, which moves her into sixth place in the OSU record book for singles in a season.

MOVING THEM ALONG: Senior Brooke Rutschman leads the Beavers in advancing runners. Rutschman has advanced 52 runners in 92 opportunities for a .565 average.

DRAPER DATA: Pitcher Crystal Draper (28-10) has moved past Joan Harvey (1982-85) into sole possession of second place in the OSU record books with a total of 60 career wins. The junior hurler has struck out 188 batters on the season while allowing only 44 walks for a 4.3 strikeout-walk ratio. The opposition is hitting just .183 against the right-hander in 900 at bats. The Hood River Valley High grad also leads the squad with a 1.19 ERA and her 28 victories rank 15th nationally.

ON THE BASEPATHS: Senior Brooke Rutschman continues to add to her total of stolen bases in the OSU career record books. Rutschman's 28 steals rank third on the Beavers' all-time list. The centerfielder has nine swipes in 11 attempts this season. Rutschman needs just three more steals to move past Denise Smail (1976-79) and into sole possession of second place the record books.

MORE BASEPATHS: Junior Michelle Chariton leads the Beavers with a perfect 13-for-13 on stolen bases this season. The native of Boise, ID, broke the Oregon State single-season record for swipes with a steal last Saturday against California. Chariton has jumped into sole possession of fourth place in the OSU record books with 24 career steals. Teammate Shawna Feldt ranks in a fifth place with 23 career stolen bases.

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 57 errors in 66 games this season and currently has a .971 fielding percentage, while its opponents have committed 93 errors for a .955 fielding percentage.

IN THE DUGOUT: Third-year assistant coach Jenny 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 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 214-210-3 and a 52-124 mark in the Pacific-10 Conference. Walker has been selected as one of just 12 coaches named to the USA Softball National Team Coaches Pool with a chance to coach in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. 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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