No. 6 Cardinal Head To Tampa For South Florida Tournament

Feb. 16, 2005

Cardinal Hit The Road For USF Tournament: The sixth-ranked Stanford softball team (6-1, 0-0 Pac-10), take their first road trip of the season, when they head to Tampa, Florida for the USF/Wilson Tournament, Feb. 19-21. Joining the Cardinal will be host-South Florida (5-5), Hofstra (0-0), Jacksonville (1-4), Seton Hall (0-0) and Florida A&M (7-4). Stanford will open with Hofstra on Saturday, February 19, at 6 p.m. ET.

USF Wilson Schedule For The Cardinal:
Saturday, Feb. 19 vs. Hofstra, 6 p.m. ET
Saturday, Feb. 19 vs. Jacksonville, 8 p.m.ET
Sunday, Feb. 20 vs. Seton Hall, 1:30 p.m. ET
Sunday, Feb. 20 at South Florida, 4 p.m. ET
Monday, Feb. 21 vs. Florida A&M, 10 a.m. ET

Michelle Smith Tabbed Pac-10 Player Of The Week: Stanford freshman third baseman Michelle Smith has been named the Pacific-10 Conference Softball Player of the Week. Smith, from Agoura Hills, Calif., hit .571 (4-of-7) over the weekend, with three runs scored and four RBI against DePaul, Kentucky and No. 20/19 Long Beach State. She hit two home runs and a triple over the three games to rack up 12 total bases and a 1.714 slugging percentage. Smith was perfect in the field with two putouts and four assists. On the year, she is batting .429 with three home runs in seven games played and a 1.188 slugging percentage.

About South Florida: The Bulls (5-5) are coached by Ken Eriksen who is in his ninth season at the helm of the program ... They are led by Samantha Ray (.394, 13 H, 4 RBI) and Danielle Urbanik (.316, 6 H, 6 RBI) ... In the circle, Danielle Urbanik is 2-1 with a 1.91 ERA and 4 K's ... Stanford holds a slim 2-1 advantage in the all-time series with the Bulls ... USF defeated the Cardinal last year, 8-0, at the Wildcat Invitational, in Tucson, Ariz.

About Jacksonville: The Dolphins (1-4) are coached by Jeff Franquet, who is in his 24th year at the helm ... Jacksonville is led by Lauren Redfern (.368, 7H, 2R) and Mayte Diaz (.333, 7H, 1 RBI) ... In the circle for the Dolphins will be Shannon Jensen (0-3, 2.88 ERA, 10 Ks) along with Katie Dobson (0-2, 3.82 ERA, 17 Ks) and Katie Buell (1-1, 3.39 ERA, 4 Ks ... This will be the first meeting between the two teams.

About Florida A&M: The Lady Rattlers (7-4) are coached by Veronica Wiggins ... FAMU is led by Kenycia Byrd (.409, 9 H, 9 RBI) and Eria Williams (..393, 11 H, 9 R) ... In the circle, the Rattlers are led by Alicia Mitchell (2-1, 2.05 ERA 10 Ks) and Destiny Gordon (3-2, 3.03 ERA, 15 Ks) ... This will be the first meeting between the two teams.

Last Week: The Cardinal won the Stanford Invitational, despite a rain-shortened schedule, by going 3-0. Stanford posted wins over DePaul (W, 18-0), Kentucky (W, 14-3) and then-No. 21 Long Beach State (W, 3-1). Leah Nelson knocked in six RBI while hitting .556 and teammate Catalina Morris hit two more homeruns, bringing her season total to a team-leading five. Freshman Anna Bearman also hit two balls out of the park, notching four RBI and three runs scored.

Morris Digs The Long Ball: Junior Catalina Morris (Sonoita, AZ) has started off 2005 with a bang. The outfielder has hit a conference-leading five homeruns in seven games played. She leads the team with a 1.190 slugging percentage and has contributed nine RBI and eight runs scored to the Cardinal effort with hitting .429 on the season.

Stanford Hit Parade: Lauren Lappin (Anaheim, CA) and Leah Nelson (Oakland, CA) lead the team with 13 and 11 hits respectively. Lappin, who is hitting at a .619 clip, ranks second in the league in hits while Nelson, batting .550, is tied for fourth. Catalina Morris and freshman Tricia Aggabao (Walnut, CA) each have nine hits and are tied for ninth in the Pac-10.

Stanford Picked Fourth In Preseason Pac-10 Coaches Poll: California has been selected by the Pac-10 Conference softball coaches as the Conference's top team in 2005. The Bears received 44 points, including three first place votes. Just one point behind, Arizona tabbed second place with 43 points, while UCLA was picked third with 42 points. Stanford finished fourth with 30 points, while Oregon and Washington finished fifth and sixth with 22 and 21 points, respectively. Rounding out the rest of the poll was Oregon State with 12 points and Arizona State with 10 points.

Lappin and Rinehart On Player Of The Year Watch List: The Amateur Softball Association, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States, announced today its initial watch list for the 4th annual USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award. This award, which is considered the Heisman Trophy in women's collegiate softball, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country. Junior shortstop Lauren Lappin and sophomore outfielder Jackie Rinehart are among those on the list. The watch list is comprised of 40 players that represent 23 colleges and 10 different Conferences. A list of 25 finalists will be announced on April 5.

Head Coach John Rittman: Cardinal head coach John Rittman, now in his ninth year on The Farm, was named the 2004 Pac-10 Coach of the Year after guiding Stanford to its best Pac-10 finish in school history in '04 as they tied for second. He was an assistant coach for the 2004 USA Softball team, that brought home a gold medal in the Athens Summer Olympics. Rittman has compiled a 345-165-1 overall record at Stanford. He has led the Cardinal to seven consecutive NCAA postseason appearances (including two CWS stints) during his tenure and seven consecutive 40 win seasons.

Up Next: The Cardinal return to the friendly confines of Boyd and Jill Smith Family Stadium when they host the Stanford Invitational II, February 25-27. Joining the Cardinal will be Sacramento State, UC Davis, Auburn, Texas Tech and Alabama-Birmingham.

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