Huskies Set To Compete At LSU Tiger Classic

Feb. 16, 2006

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UP NEXT: The No. 11 Washington softball team (4-1) returns to the road this week to participate in the LSU Tiger Classic in Baton Rouge, La. The Huskies open play vs. Eastern Michigan (11 am) and Western Kentucky (1:15 pm) on Friday, Feb. 17, before taking on Mississippi Valley State ( 9 am) and LSU (3:45 pm) on Feb. 18. The teams will be seeded after Saturday's competition for bracket play on Sunday.

LAST TIME OUT: Washington battled back from a season-opening loss to Kentucky (6-1) last weekend to win its next four games to capture the Alexis Resort Kickoff Classic title. The Huskies defeated No. 12/13 Oklahoma 12-4 in five innings and topped Illinois-Chicago 5-1, Long Beach State 5-2 and host UNLV 3-1. Washington and Oklahoma both finished the tournament with 4-1 records but UW earned the tourney title after defeating Oklahoma head-to-head. The Huskies are now 11-3 all-time in season openers and 54-15 in season-opening multiple-team tournaments.

SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION:

EASTERN MICHIGAN (0-0)
Series vs. UW:
First meeting
Notes: Eastern Michigan makes its season debut this weekend vs. the Huskies. Last season, the Eagles posted a 17-24 overall record and were 11-12 in the Mid-American Conference. The team was led by Lauren Clark with a .328 average and 21 RBIs, while Lindsay Schmid hit .228 with 17 RBIs. Aimee Woodrun returns for her junior campaign after posting a 6-12 record last season from the circle. She struck out 75 batters in 108.2 innings.

WESTERN KENTUCKY (3-2)
Series vs. UW:
First meeting
Notes: Western Kentucky is off to a 3-2 start. The team is led at the plate by Bailey Rolfs with a .375 average (6-for-16) and Rebecca Horesky with a .333 clip (4-for-14), including a team-high three RBIs. Adrienne Lathrop headlines the three-member pitching staff with a 2-0 mark, while Jennifer Kempf picked up a shutout victory in her only appearance of the season.

No. 25/25 LSU (6-0)
Series vs. UW:
The Huskies lead 5-3
Last meeting: Washington fell to LSU 4-2 on Feb. 28, 2004.
Notes: LSU is coming off 20-0 and 11-0 victories over Grambling on Feb. 15. The Tigers set a school record with eight doubles in the opener before sophomore Tiffany Garcia threw the school's third-ever perfect game in the nightcap. LSU is out scoring its opponents 67-1 and is hitting .423 as a team. Five LSU players are hitting above the .500 mark, including Leslie Klein with a .588 clip. Camille Harris boasts a .538 average, while Stephanie Hill is hitting .533. Lauren Castle leads the team with 13 RBIs, while Klein is second on the team with 10 runs batted in. The four-member pitching staff boasts a 0.26 earned run average. Dani Hofer leads the team with a 2-0 record and 27 strikeouts in 12 innings.

PHENOMENAL FRESHMEN: Washington's freshman class made quite a splash in the opening weekend with all five rookies making at least two starts ... Marnie Koziol led the Huskies with a .700 average (7-for-10) ... Ashlyn Watson hit two home runs ... Alicia Matthews hit at a .357 clip, including a two-RBI double ... Danielle Lawrie went 3-0 from the circle, striking out 31 batters in 19 innings.

DOMINIQUE DOMINATES: Junior All-American Dominique Lastrapes had a strong opening weekend to the season, leading the Huskies with seven RBIs at the Alexis Resort Kickoff Classic in Las Vegas. Lastrapes hit .389 (7-for-18) and led the team with six runs scored.

WASHINGTON IN THE POLLS: The Huskies moved up two spots in this week's USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 poll to take over the No. 11 position. The Huskies have been ranked in the poll for each of the last 156 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 moved up three spots in the ESPN.com/USA Softball top 25 poll to No. 11.

HUSKIES ON THE AIRWAVES: KKNW AM-1150, through rights-holder Pioneer Radio & Sports, will carry 10 Husky softball games during the regular season and will carry all postseason games. Longtime baseball play-by-play man Mike Brown returns for his ninth season behind the microphone, while John Cowley delivers color commentary for his sixth 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.

UW PICKED SIXTH: Washington was selected to finish sixth in the league by the Pac-10 Conference softball coaches. Head Coach Heather Tarr, who begins her second season at the helm of the UW program, returns seven starters for the 2006 campaign, including five All-Pac-10 players. The Huskies finished sixth in the conference last season with a 10-11 record after four teams tied for first place with 13-8 records. UCLA (49 points) was picked to finish first, followed by Arizona (41), Stanford (37), California (27), Oregon State (26), UW (23), Arizona State (12) and Oregon (9).

ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The 16-player Washington roster includes nine returning letterwinners and seven returning starters. The 2006 team is comprised of two seniors, six juniors, four sophomores and five freshmen. Seven players hail from Washington, seven from California, one from Oregon and one from British Columbia.

HEAD COACH Heather Tarr: Heather Tarr, a former Washington player, embarks on her second season at the helm of the Husky Softball team. In her first year, Tarr led Washington to the Super Regional where the Huskies fell one game short of advancing to the program's eighth Women's College World Series. Seven Huskies earned All-Pac-10 honors, including Kristen Rivera, who was the Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. Three Washington players earned All-Pacific Region honors and three were named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team. The Huskies tallied 13 wins over top-25 opponents, including No. 1 Michigan, No. 3 California and No. 4 Stanford. Tarr has a 39-23 career record at Washington.

TWO HUSKIES NAMED TO POTY WATCH LIST: Washington junior Dominique Lastrapes and freshman Danielle Lawrie are among 50 Division I players named to the USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year watch list. Lastrapes is named to the list for the second consecutive year, while Lawrie is the only freshman on the list. The award, given out by the Amateur Softball Association, is considered one of the most prestigious honors in women's collegiate softball, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country. Past winners of the award include UCLA's Stacey Nuveman, Florida State's Jessica Van der Linden and two-time winner Texas pitcher Cat Osterman.

Aimee Minor DRAFTED INTO THE NPF SENIOR DRAFT: Aimee Minor has been drafted by the Connecticut Brakettes in the second round of the 2006 Senior College Player Selections. Minor is one of 30 athletes selected by seven 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 August 31, 2006.

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