Softball Hosts Four Pac-10 Games This Week
April 27, 2005
UP NEXT: The No. 22/24 (USA Today/ESPN.com) Washington softball team (24-15, 4-6 Pac-10) opens the second half of the Pac-10 season with four home games this week. The Huskies open the week against No. 13/10 UCLA on Wednesday at 1 pm, before taking on No. 4/5 Stanford on Friday and No. 3/3 California on Saturday and Sunday. The games vs. UCLA and Stanford will be broadcast on the radio by KKNW 1150 AM and all four games can be followed on Gametracker at www.gohuskies.com.
A LOOK BACK: The Huskies went 3-1 last week, splitting a pair of games at UCLA (L, 4-3; W, 2-1) and taking two games from Nevada (22-1, 14-0). Washington out scored its opponents 41-6 and out hit them .425 to .235. The Huskies dropped Friday's game to UCLA, falling victim to a grand slam by Jodie Legaspi. Washington rebounded on Saturday, using a two-run home run by Lauren Greer to propel to the 2-1 victory. The Huskies flew to Reno Saturday night and won both games of a double header against Nevada on Sunday. Seven players combined for 10 home runs in 10 innings against the Wolf Pack. The Huskies had 24 hits and six home runs in the opening game to set UW single-game records in both categories.
SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION:
No. 13/10 UCLA (24-11, 5-5 Pac-10)
Series vs. UW: UCLA leads 34-17
Last meeting: The teams split last weekend with UCLA winning on Friday, 4-3 and Washington winning on Saturday 2-1. Jodie Legaspi hit a grand slam for the Bruins in Friday's game to overcome a 2-0 deficit. UW freshman Lauren Greer hit the game-winning two-run home run on Saturday. Freshman pitcher Caitlin Noble struck out eight in the win.
Notes: After losing it's first four Pac-10 games, UCLA has rebounded to win five of its last six. Four players are hitting above .300, including Andrea Duran (.377), Emily Zaplatosch (.318), Caitlin Benyi (.308) and Ashley Herrera (.304). Jodie Legaspi leads the Bruins with six home runs, while Zaplatosch has hit five. UCLA is out scoring its opponents 141-54 and it out hitting its opponents .281 to .172. Freshman Anjelica Seldon headlines the pitching staff with a 0.62 earned run average and 16-6 record. She has struck out 280 batters in 170 innings and has walked just 24.
No. 4/5 STANFORD (34-9, 8-3 Pac-10)
Series vs. UW: The Huskies lead 29-14
Last meeting: Stanford won both games in Palo Alto by the scores of 6-3 and 4-3. Freshman Michelle Smith hit three-run home runs in each of those games.
Notes: Stanford took two out of three games against California last week, winning the first two games, 6-4 and 2-1 and dropping Sunday's game 1-0. Leah Nelson and Lauren Lappin lead the offense with .357 and .355 averages, respectively. Michelle Smith leads the team with 46 RBIs and has hit 16 home runs this season. Becky McCullough (14-3) and Laura Severson (14-4) have each won 14 games for the Cardinal and have 1.78 and 1.81 ERAs.
No. 3/3 CALIFORNIA (40-8, 7-5 Pac-10)
Series vs. UW: The Huskies lead 29-15
Last meeting: California defeated the Huskies in Berkeley, 4-3, on April 8.
Notes: California is led by Vicky Galindo at the plate with a .372 average, while Haley Woods is hitting .322 with a team-leading 52 RBIs, including 13 home runs. Kristina Thorson and Kelly Anderson headline the Golden Bear pitching staff with 1.11 and 1.25 ERAs, respectively. Thorson (18-4) has thrown three shutouts with 169 strikeouts in 145.2 innings. Anderson (21-4) has tossed three shutouts with 148 strikeouts in 162.2 innings.
GREER NAMED PAC-10 PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Freshman outfielder Lauren Greer was named the Pacific-10 Conference Softball Player of the Week for April 19-25. She led the Huskies to a 3-1 record last week, including an upset win over No. 10 UCLA on April 23 and a pair of wins over Nevada on April 24. Greer hit the game-winning home run against UCLA on April 23 with a two-run shot to left field. Greer followed up that performance with a 4-for-6 showing against Nevada in a doubleheader. Greer went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a walk and three runs in the opener. She also went 1-for-2 with a two-run home run against Nevada in game two. On the week, Greer led all players with a .667 average, going 8-for-12 from the plate with five runs scored, four RBIs, one double and two home runs.
RIVERA IS ONE HOME RUN AWAY, APPROACHES WALK RECORD: Senior Kristen Rivera hit three home runs and drew eight walks last week to bring her career totals to 72 home runs and 163 walks. She is one home run away from tying Jaime Clark for the UW record (73) and ranks second all-time on the walk list behind Jennifer Cline (176).
HUSKIES AMONG NATIONAL STATISTICAL LEADERS: Washington ranks among the nation's best in four statistical categories, including home runs per game, scoring, slugging percentage and stolen bases per game. The Huskies' 1.29 home runs per game rank fourth nationally, while their 6.11 runs per game rank eighth. UW boasts a .484 slugging percentage and 1.63 stolen bases per game, which rank 11th and 29th, respectively. Five Washington players are also listed on the national ranking summary, including Ashley Charters, Sarah Hyatt, Aimee Minor, Caitlin Noble and Kristen Rivera. Charters ranks second and fifth in the country with 1.11 runs per game and 0.74 stolen bases per game. Hyatt ranks 12th and 16th with .31 home runs per game and 1.06 RBIs per game. Minor ranks 12th and 27th with 0.31 home runs per game and 0.97 RBIs per game. Noble ranks eighth nationally with 11.3 strikeouts per game. Rivera leads the country with 1.18 walks per game and .917 slugging percentage. She also ranks 12th with 0.31 home runs per game and 23rd with 0.91 runs per game.
WASHINGTON IN THE POLLS: The Huskies are ranked 22nd in the USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 poll. The Huskies have been ranked in the poll for each of the last 152 datings. Washington's streak began with the team's No. 15 preseason ranking in 1994 and also includes smaller streaks of 66 straight top 6 rankings (2/28/96 - preseason 2001 poll) and 69 consecutive poll datings in the top 10 (preseason 1996 - 2/28/01). Washington is ranked 24th in the latest USA Softball/ESPN.com top 25 poll.
RIVERA CLIMBS ALL-TIME PAC-10 CHARTS: Kristen Rivera is climbing the Pac-10 all-time charts in home runs and walks and is about to enter the top-10 list for career runs batted it. Rivera's 72 home runs rank sixth on the Pac-10 chart behind No. 5 Jaime Clark (73) and No. 4 Jenny Dalton (76). She ranks seventh on the conference all-time list with 163 career walks and is 10 walks away from the No. 6 spot held by Leah Braatz (173). Rivera has driven in 218 runs in her career, which ranks fifth on the UW all-time list. She needs seven more RBIs to enter the Pac-10 top-10. The No. 10 spot is currently held by former Husky Michelle Church, who drove in 225 runs between 1993-96.
BOEK APPROACHES PAC-10 APPEARANCE TOP-10: Senior pitcher Ashley Boek has made 151 career appearances and is three appearances away from the Pac-10 all-time top-10 list. Nicole DiSalvio currently holds the No. 10 spot on the conference chart with 154 appearances from 1998-2001.
FISKE SETS GRAND SLAM RECORD: With two grand slams in the last two weeks, senior Kathy Fiske has set a UW career record with five grand slams. The previous record of four grand slams was set by Jenny Topping in 2000. Fiske hit grand slams against Arizona State (Apr. 17) and Nevada (Apr. 24) this season. Both home runs came in the first inning.
ESPN PICKS UP TWO GAMES: Washington's games at Arizona on May 7 and 8 have been picked up for television. The May 7 game will be broadcast on ESPN2 and has been moved up one hour to a 6 pm start. The May 8 game will be broadcast on ESPN at 1pm.
HYATT ENTERS RBI TOP 10 LIST: Junior Sarah Hyatt has driven in 38 RBIs this season to bring her career total to 106 RBIs. She surpassed current Husky head coach Heather Tarr who had 104 RBIs from 1994-97. Other current players on the list include Kristen Rivera (fourth- 218) and Kathy Fiske (eighth-131).
MINOR ENTERS HOME RUN TOP 10 LIST: Junior Aimee Minor has belted 12 home runs this season to bring her career total to 20. She ranks ninth on the UW all-time career list and trails Kim DePaul who holds the No. 8 spot with 21 home runs. Minor has hit two home runs in the same game twice this season. She hit two homers vs. Ohio State on Feb. 26 at the Palm Springs Classic and two against Portland Sate in the first game of a double header on March 12. Other current players on the UW top-10 home run list include Kristen Rivera (second- 72), Kathy Fiske (fourth- 32) and Sarah Hyatt (fifth- 31).
STEALING EVERYTHING BUT THE KITCHEN SINK: The Huskies have stolen 64 bases in 76 attempts this season to rank second in the Pac-10. Washington had just 39 stolen bases all of last season. Freshman Ashley Charters leads the team and conference with 29 steals in 32 attempts, which ranks eighth on the UW single-season list. Dominique Lastrapes is 9-for-10 and Kristen Rivera is 6-for-6 on the season.
COLLEGIATE PLAYER OF THE YEAR FINALIST: Senior Kristen Rivera is among a list of 25 finalists for the 2005 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award. The award, which is considered the Heisman Trophy in women's collegiate softball and is the only national player of the year award, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country. Sophomore Dominique Lastrapes was on the initial top-40 watch list for the award.
HUSKIES ON THE AIRWAVES: KKNW AM-1150, through rights-holder Pioneer Radio & Sports, will carry 10 Husky softball games, plus any postseason play during the 2005 season. Longtime baseball play-by-play man Mike Brown returns for his eighth season behind the microphone, while John Cowley will deliver color commentary for his fifth season with the Dawgs. All games will air live on KKNW, and are also available over the internet at www.gohuskies.com or www.newschannel1150.com. Here is the remaining UW softball radio broadcast schedule (broadcasts begin 15 minutes prior to first pitch; schedule is subject to change):
UW USES THE LONG BALL: Washington has smacked 58 home runs this season to lead the Pac-10 and rank fourth nationally. The Dawgs have given up just 17 home runs. Washington is 22-8 when hitting a home run. The Huskies hit six home runs against Nevada on Apr. 24 in the opening game of a double header. Washington has also hit four home runs in the same game three times, including a 17-7 romp of Illinois (Feb. 12), a 14-4 win over Portland State (Mar. 12) and a 14-0 victory over Nevada in the nightcap. UW has hit at least one home run in 30 of 39 games this season and two home runs or more 15 times. UW has hit-back-to-back home runs six times this season. Sarah Hyatt and Aimee Minor have gone back-to-back twice, while Hyatt has also gone back-to-back with Jacki Hansen and Kristen Rivera. Rivera has also gone back-to-back with Kathy Fiske. Lauren Greer and Callie Bergan went back-to-back against Nevada.
FISKE RETURNS TO HUSKY LINEUP: Senior third baseman Kathy Fiske made her first start on April 1 since breaking her left hand against Tennessee on Feb. 13. She missed 18 games after being hit by a pitch vs. Monica Abbot and breaking her fifth metacarpal bone in two places. At the time of the injury, Fiske was leading the team with a .450 average and 10 RBIs. Fiske singled vs. Oregon in her first game back.
CHARTERS BOASTS 13-GAME HITTING STREAK: Freshman Ashley Charters had a 13 game hitting streak from Mar. 5 to Apr. 3. Charters has 12 multi-hit games and has hit safely in 27 of 33 games this season.
NOBLE TOSSES NO-HITTER: Freshman Caitlin Noble became just the third freshman in Husky history to throw a no-hitter when she held Kansas hitless on Feb. 26 en route to the 4-0 win. UW has had 23 no-hitters in its history.
BOEK THROWS THIRD NO-HITTER: Senior Ashley Boek threw her third career no-hitter with a 18-0 win over Willamette on Feb. 19. Boek also had no-hitters against San Jose State in 2002 and Morehead State in 2003.
UW SCORES BIG: Washington has scored double-figure runs nine times this season. The Huskies defeated Nevada 22-1 and 14-0 on April 24 and defeated Willamette 18-0 on Feb. 19. UW also beat Illinois 17-7, Portland State 14-4, Arizona State 12-4, Jacksonville 12-0, DePaul 11-6 and IPFW 11-0. The UW record for runs scored in a game is 28, set in a 28-0 victory over Stanford on April 23, 1993.
NOBLE SETS STRIKEOUT RECORD: Freshman Caitlin Noble struck out 16 batters against Willamette in six innings on Feb. 19 to set a UW record for most strikeouts in a regulation game. The previous record of 15 strikeouts in seven innings was set by current Husky pitching coach Eve Gaw. Gaw fanned 15 against Western Washington on April 9, 1995. The most strikeouts in Washington history is 18, set by Jennifer Spediacci in a nine inning game against Oregon State on May 13, 2000.
UW FALLS ON SHORT SIDE OF ONE-RUN GAMES: Seven of Washington's 15 losses this season have come by one run. The Huskies are 3-7 in one-run ball games, losing to Hawaii 7-6, UCF 1-0, Tennessee 2-1, Northwestern 3-2, California 4-3, Stanford 4-3 and UCLA 4-3. Four of those loses came way of home runs. Washington's one-run victories include a 1-0 win over Oklahoma State at the Palm Springs Classic, a 4-3 win over Oregon to open the Pac-10 season, and a 2-1 win at UCLA. Dominique Lastrapes hit the game-winning home run vs. Oklahoma State and Aimee Minor hit a three-run home run against Oregon. Lauren Greer had the game-winning home run at UCLA.
EXTRA-INNINGS MEAN EXTRA RUNS: The Huskies have played two extra-inning games this season and have won both. UW is out scoring its opponents 6-0 during the international tiebreaker and junior Aimee Minor has hit a home run in both eighth innings. She hit a leadoff two-run shot against UC Santa Barbara en route a 4-2 win and belted a three-run home run vs. Long Beach en route to the 5-1 win.
SCORE EARLY, SCORE OFTEN: Washington is out scoring its opponents 255-124 this season and is doing most of its damage early on. The Huskies are out scoring their opponents 76-23 in the first inning and 57-14 in the second inning. Washington's problem innings are the third and sixth. UW is being out scored 29-20 in the third inning and hold the slight 19-18 edge in the sixth.
BOEK CRACKS TOP FIVE: Ashley Boek has cracked into the UW career top five list in numerous categories this season. Boek ranks fifth in wins (79), appearances (151) and starts (115). She has 757 career strikeouts to rank second on the UW all-time list behind Jennifer Spediacci (894).
BANG FOR YOUR BUCK: The Huskies have pounded 106 extra-base hits this season and have given up just 51. Washington has hit 46 doubles, two triples and 58 home runs compared to its opponent's 32 doubles, two triples and 17 home runs. Eleven different Huskies have hit home runs this season, including every starter. Kristen Rivera leads the team with 14 home runs, while Aimee Minor and Sarah Hyatt have each hit 12. Kathy Fiske has belted seven home runs and Callie Bergan and Lauren Greer have each hit three. Dominique Lastrapes and Caitlin Noble each have two home runs and Ashley Charters, Torie Coury and Caitlin Noble have one.
FANNING THE COMPETITION: Freshman Caitlin Noble has struck out 192 batters in 124 innings, averaging 10.8K's per game. Noble has struck out at least 10 batters nine times. Ashley Boek is averaging 8.2 strikeouts per game has struck out 10 or more batters twice this season.
IN GRAND FASHION: Four Huskies have hit grand slams this season, including seniors Callie Bergan, Kathy Fiske and Kristen Rivera and junior Aimee Minor. Bergan hit her first career grand slam vs. Jacksonville in the season-opener in Honolulu on Feb. 3. The hit marked the first home run of her career and her second-ever extra-base hit. Her five RBI's also marked a career game-high. She had just eight in her first three years at Washington. Fiske hit her fourth career grand slam against Arizona State on April 17 and fifth against Nevada on April 24. Rivera hit her second career grand slam against Portland State on Mar. 12. Her first grand slam came last year vs. Arizona State on April 3. Minor hit her first career grand slam vs. DePaul on Mar. 19 and did it again vs. Simon Fraser on Apr. 5.
HUSKIES WIN HAWAII PARADISE CLASSIC: Washington opened the 2005 season with a 3-1 record at the Hawaii Paradise Classic to earn the tournament title. The Huskies tied with Hawaii and Oregon in the team standings but won the tournament title with the tie breaker (least runs scored against: seven). UW defeated Jacksonville (12-0), IPFW (11-0) and No. 13 Oregon (6-0), before falling to host UH (7-6). Senior Kristen Rivera earned MVP honors as she hit .667 (6-for-9) with seven RBIs, six runs scored and two home runs. She was the Offensive MVP of the same tournament in 2003. Three other UW players earned all-tournament honors, including pitcher Ashley Boek, third baseman Kathy Fiske and outfielder Jacki Hansen. Washington out hit its opponents .340 to .233 and out scored its opponents 35-7.
UW PICKED SIXTH: Washington was selected to finish sixth in the league by the Conference softball coaches. Head Coach Heather Tarr, who enters her first season at the helm of the UW program, returns seven starters for the 2005 campaign, including All-American catcher and 2004 Pac-10 Player of the Year Kristen Rivera and All-American second baseman Dominique Lastrapes. Tarr, a former player at Washington, aims to guide the Huskies to their 12th postseason appearance and eighth Women's College World Series. California was picked to win the Pac-10 Conference after receiving 44 points, including three first place votes. Arizona, the 2004 Pac-10 Champion, was picked to finish second with 43 points, while 2004 National Champion UCLA was tabbed third with 42 points.ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The 17-player Washington roster includes 10 returning letterwinners and seven returning starters. The 2005 team is comprised of five seniors, four juniors, three sophomores and five freshmen. Eight players hail from Washington, eight from California and one from Oregon.
HEAD COACH Heather Tarr: Heather Tarr, a former Washington softball player, embarks on her first season as its head coach after a six-year stint at Pacific as an assistant coach and most recently as the associate head coach. At Pacific, the Tigers posted a 232-124 (.652) overall record and 90-44 (.672) mark in the Big West Conference. In 2001, she and Pacific head coach Brian Kolze were named the 2001 NFCA West Region Coaching Staff of the Year after guiding the Tigers to within one win of the Women's College World Series and a No. 18 final national ranking. Tarr joined Pacific prior to the 1999 season after an outstanding career as a Husky. As a four-year letterwinner, Tarr helped lead UW to a second place finish at the Women's College World Series in 1996 and a third place finish in 1997. She has a 24-15 career record at Washington and 4-6 record in the Pac-10.
RIVERA DRAFTED BY THE NPF'S TEXAS THUNDER: Washington senior Kristen Rivera has been drafted by the Texas Thunder in the first round of the 2005 Senior College Player Selections. Rivera was one of 21 athletes selected by six National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) teams over four rounds. Due to NCAA regulations, an active college senior-athlete may not sign with her respective franchise until their 2005 college season is finished. Senior selection rights expire July 15, 2005. The NPF consists of six team including the Akron Racers, Arizona Heat, Chicago Bandits, New England Riptide, NY/NJ Juggernaut and Texas Thunder. The California Sunbirds will remain a part of the league but is suspending play for 2005 while working this year to restructure with plans to field a team again in 2006 along with additional teams in other potential markets. Last year, the Texas Thunder won the inaugural NPF regular season with a 41-17 record. Two former Washington players are also in the league, including Jaime Clark (Chicago Bandits) and Sara Pickering (Arizona Heat).
2006 SIGNEES: The Washington softball team has received National Letters of Intent from five high school seniors and one junior college transfer who will join the Huskies for the 2006 season. The six players that signed letters did so during the early signing period, which runs Nov. 10-17. The late signing period begins April 13, 2005. The newcomers include infielder/pitcher Brooke Woodward (Vancouver, Wash), pitcher Danielle Lawrie (Langley, British Columbia), catcher Ashlyn Watson (Garden Grove, Calif.), utility Alicia Matthews (Olympia, Wash), outfielder Marnie Koziol (Renton, Wash.) and infielder Destri Keo (Woodinville, Wash).
TWO FORMER UW PLAYERS TO COMPETE AT SEATTLE SPORTS SUMMIT: After a three-day tryout camp in Chula Vista, CA, former Washington players Jaime Clark and Jenny Topping have been selected by USA Softball to the 18-member roster to compete at the 2005 Pacific Rim Sports Summit in Seattle in June. Clark, a 2003 graduate from Washington, had a spectacular collegiate career that included two appearances in the Women's College World Series (2000, 2003) and three Pac-10 all-conference awards. She finished her career with three school records, including career home runs (73), career runs scored (223) and career runs batted in (243). She was an alternate on the 2004 USA Women's Softball Team that won the Olympic gold medal in Athens last summer. Topping played one season at UW (2000) and earned All-America honors before transferring to Cal State Fullerton. During her freshman campaign, Topping led the nation in home runs (24), RBIs (90) and slugging percentage (.960). She was the Pac-10 Newcomer of the Year and set Washington records for walks (56) and on-base percentage (.565). Topping was a member of the 2004 Olympic team.