No. 7 Softball Prepares For Weekend Series With No. 2 California

April 21, 2005

Cardinal Wraps Up Weekend With Cal Series: The seventh-ranked Stanford softball team (32-8, 6-2 Pac-10), will take on No. 2 California (38-6 , 5-3 Pac-10) at Boyd and Jill Smith Stadium on Friday, April 22, at 7 p.m. before traveling to Berkeley on Saturday and Sunday to finish out the series with 1 p.m. games both days.

Stanford Splits With Sacramento State: The seventh-ranked Stanford softball team split a doubleheader with Sacramento State this afternoon at Shea Stadium in Sacramento ... The Cardinal dropped the first game, 3-2, in 11 innings and won the second, 16-1 in five innings ... Becky McCullough (13-2) took the loss for the Cardinal in the circle, allowing three runs (two earned) on 14 hits over 10.2 innings of work in game one. Junior hurler Laura Severson (13-4) got the win in the circle, allowing one run on one hit over four innings of work in game two ... Stanford's six homeruns set a school record for a single game on The Farm (in game two).

About California: The Golden Bears (38-6) are coached by Diane Ninemire... They are led by Lindsay James (.478, 54 H, 34 R) and Vicky Galindo (.382, 39 H, 35 R) ... In the circle, Kelly Anderson leads the staff (20-2, 0.99 ERA, 138 K's) while Kristina Thorson (17-4, 1.21 ERA, 159 K's) is right behind her ... California leads the all-time series with Stanford 24-13 ... Last season, California won 1-0 and 6-0 at Stanford then the Cardinal won 5-3 in Berkeley ... The Golden Bears are hitting .309 on the year with a 1.14 team ERA and .977 fielding percentage.

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, for April 12-18, Commissioner Tom Hansen announced today.Smith, from Agoura Hills, Calif., helped the Cardinal to a 3-0 record last weekend on the road against the Oregon schools. On the weekend, Smith hit .555 (5-for-9) with three runs scored and 10 RBI. Stanford handed Oregon State its first Conference loss on April 15 (3-0) in Corvallis. The freshman went 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored in the victory. Against Oregon on April 16, Smith was 1-for-2 at the plate with four RBI and a run scored, which included a grand slam in the top of the seventh inning. Smith wrapped up her weekend going 2-for-4 on April 17 with four RBI and a run scored.

Up Next: The Cardinal have a mid-week game with Saint Mary's on April 26 at 7 p.m. at Boyd and Jill Smith Family Stadium ... Then the team travels to Seattle and Los Angeles in continued conference action over the weekend ... Stanford will face Washington on April. 29 and UCLA on April 30 and 31st.

Smith Breaks Single-Season Homerun Record: Freshman Michelle Smith (Agoura Hills, CA) has 16 homeruns on the year, which breaks the previous single-season record of 14 held by former All-American and current USA Softball team member, Jessica Mendoza (2001 and 2002). Smith's 16 homers leads the Pac-10 and she ranks among the top 10 in homeruns per game nationally. Her 45 RBI this season ties her for seventh for a single season.

Notes From The Dugout: Leah Nelson and Catalina Morris lead the team with 13 mulit-hit games ... Michelle Smith leads the squad with 16 multi-RBI contests ... Catalina Morris has recorded the longest hitting streak of the season (10 games) and is currently on a four-game hitting streak ... Stanford recorded a season-high 19 hits against DePaul (2/12) earlier this year ... Cardinal pitchers have thrown six one-hitters in 2005 ... Michelle Smith is on a seven-game hitting streak heading into the Cal games while Lauren Lappin has hit safely in six consecutive games.

This and That: Stanford's longest winning streak of the season was a 14 game stretch (from 2/12 to 3/5) ... They are currently on a one-game winning streak ... The Cardinal have outscored their opponents, 251-82 this year ... The Cardinal have posted 14 shutouts this year ... Stanford has scored 10 or more runs six times in 2005 ... The Cardinal have outscored their opponent in every inning except the 10th ... Stanford is 26-1 when they outhit their opponents ... Stanford's 53 homeruns this season is a Cardinal single-season record and leads the conference in 2005 ... The Cardinal have scored 251 runs in 2005 - the fifth most for a single season ... Their 13 triples this year ties the single season record on The Farm as well (set last year in 2004).

Catalina Morris Watch: Senior centerfielder Catalina Morris (Senoita, AZ) can be found multiple times on the Cardinal career record lists. Morris' 12 career triples to date is a school record. Her 25 career homeruns ranks third and she needs just three more to tie for second (Sarah Beeson, 1999-2002) with 28. Her 11 homeruns this season ranks tied for seventh for a single season. With 166 career hits, Morris has entered the top 10 on The Farm (9th).

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.

ASA Announces Top 25 Candidates For Collegiate Softball Player of the Year: The Amateur Softball Association, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States, announced today the 25 finalists 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 is among those on the list. On May 10, just days before the start of post-season play, a list of 10 finalists will be named. On May 31 the list will be cut to three and those final three players will travel to Oklahoma City for the announcement of the winner at the 2005 NCAA Women's College World Series.

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 361-166-1 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.

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