California (51-12) Tournament Notes, May 28
May 28, 2005
WACO, Texas -
Today's Game*:Baylor (50-13), Waco, Texas (Getterman Stadium), 2:00 p.m.Cal leads the Waco Super Regional series, 1-0*A Baylor (50-13) victory forces a third and deciding seriesgame (time TBA)
BEARS ON THE BRINK OF WCWS: A victory in today's Waco Super Regional will give the second-seeded California softball team their seventh consecutive berth in the Women's College World and 13th appearance in a World Series in the last 24 seasons. Cal leads the Super Regional series against host and 15th-seeded Baylor, 1-0, as a result of Friday's 8-0 victory. Game No. 2, previously scheduled for a 1 p.m. start, has been rolled back to 2 p.m. due to precipitation in the Waco area. A Baylor victory will force a third game, immediately following the second. Recent sites where Cal has clinched a WCWS berth include: Massachusetts (1999), Fresno State (2000, 2002), Florida State (2001), Michigan (2003) and Nebraska (2004). Head coach Diane Ninemire is seeking her ninth career WCWS trip. She has also led the Bears to the WCWS in 1992 and 1996.
BAYLOR MISCUES HELP CAL TO GAME NO. 1 VICTORY: Four different Baylor players combined to commit a season-high five errors as Cal scored five unearned runs en route to an 8-0, six-inning victory in game No. 1 Friday evening. The Bears scored all the runs they would need in the third as Baylor produced three fielding mishaps.
ANDERSON LEADS THE WAY: Senior pitcher Kelly Anderson tossed her third postseason complete game gem in a game No. 1 victory against Baylor. Anderson, 4-0 in the NCAA Tournament with a 0.00 ERA in 26.1 innings (one unearned run), tossed a three-hitter in Friday's win and with the benefit of two double plays, didn't allow a runner to reach second base. She struck out four hitters and didn't walk a batter in a start for the first time since a March 25 victory against Harvard. Anderson produced one of the gutsiest postseason performances in Cal history in the Fresno State Regional final against the host Bulldogs. With Cal having to win back-to-back games to reach the Super Regional, she threw six innings of relief to earn a win in the opener and tossed a no-hitter - her second in as many days at the tournament - in the clincher. Anderson, whose 28 wins this season are the most of any campaign in her career, is slated to start game No. 2.
SUTTON TURNS IT ON WHEN IT COUNTS: To find the hottest hitter in Cal's lineup over the last three weeks of the season, look no further than the No. 9 spot in the Bears' lineup. Sophomore right fielder Alex Sutton was batting .198 on May 8 but since hitting .455 (10-for-22) over her last nine games, has upped her season average to .245. Over the last three weeks, Sutton, hitting .400 (6-for-15) in the postseason, has hits in seven of her last nine games and RBIs in six of nine. She has also enjoyed some of Cal's top individual performances. In Friday's victory against Baylor, she went 2-for-3 and doubled in the game-winner in the third inning. On May 12, her bottom-of-the-seventh base hit brought home senior Jessica Vernaglia as Cal toppled No. 3 Arizona, 1-0. Sutton went 2-for-3 a day later as Cal defeated Arizona State, 9-1, and hit her first homer of the year in the Bears' season-ending, 2-1, loss to the Sun Devils, May 14. In the Fresno State Regional opener against BYU, she singled home shortstop Chelsea Spencer in the second inning for an early 1-0 lead.
THE JAMES WATCH: With a 2-for-4 performance Friday, junior left fielder Lindsay James upped her season average to .451. James, who missed 17 games (4/9-5/14) with a broken left hand, has an excellent shot to become Cal's first .400 hitter in a decade and just the third ever. She is also chasing down the Bears' single-season batting mark of .466, set by catcher Gillian Boxx in 1995.
ACROSS THE NATION: Below is the status of the seven other Super Regional series that comprise the NCAA Tournament. All results are from Friday with the victor leading each series 1-0:
At Ann Arbor, Mich.Michigan 4, Washington 1At Chicago (Illinois-Chicago)DePaul 4, Northwestern 0At College Station, TexasAlabama 4, Texas A&M 1At Austin, TexasTexas 1, Bethune-Cookman 0 (9 innings)At Palo Alto, Calif.Tennessee 2, Stanford 0At Los AngelesGeorgia 4, UCLA 1At Tucson, Ariz.Arizona 6, Oklahoma 0 (weather postponement in the sixth inning)
ETC: Designated player Emily Friedman hit safely in her sixth straight NCAA Tournament game last evening ... Cal's 10 hits last evening marked the 20th time the Bears have collected double digits in hits in a game this year ... the Bears are 4-0 all-time against Baylor ... Cal's five stolen bases on Friday were the highest since the Bears swiped five bags in a victory against North Carolina (3/27).