Softball Heads To Fresno

March 9, 2006

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UP NEXT: The No. 15/17 (ESPN.com/NFCA) Washington softball team (15-6) travels to Fresno, Calif., this week to participate in the Fresno State Bulldog Classic. The Huskies, who went 3-3 at the Compass Invitational in Waco, Texas last week, have five games on the slate this week. Washington opens vs. San Diego (11 a.m.) and No. 21/22 DePaul (3 p.m.) on Friday, before taking on Ball State (11 a.m.) and UCF (5 p.m.) and Saturday and tournament host and No. 25/RV Fresno State on Sunday at 1 p.m. All five games will be broadcast by KKNW-1150 AM and can be accessed online at www.gohuskies.com or www.newschannel1150.com.

LAST TIME OUT: The Huskies went 3-3 at the Compass Invitational in Waco, Texas last week, going 1-1 against each of the three tournament teams (Bowling Green, Mississippi State and Baylor). UW's Ashley Charters, Dena Tyson and Dominique Lastrapes were named to the all-tournament team. Charter's led the team with a .474 average (9-for-19) with two triples and was 6-for-6 in stolen bases. Tyson led the team with five RBIs and hit .333 (6-for-18) with two home runs, while Lastrapes also hit .333 (7-for-21).

SCOUTING SAN DIEGO (9-6)
Series vs. UW:
First Meeting
Notes: The Toreros are on a two-game skid after being shutout by UC Riverside (4-0) and San Diego State (8-0). Sara Mason headlines the offense with a .391 average (18-for-46) and leads the team with 13 runs scored. Kathleen Bonja leads the squad with 10 RBIs and has hit three home runs this season. Erin Harmonson is San Diego's top pitcher with a 5-3 record and 2.89 earned run average. She has one shutout and has struck out 28 batters in 43.2 innings. San Diego has one player on its roster from Washington state. Freshman second baseman Emily Passovoy (Mukiltio/Kamiak) has played in 13 games and is hitting .250.

SCOUTING NO. 21/22 DEPAUL (7-2)
Series vs. UW: The Huskies lead the series, 8-1.
Last Meeting: Washington handed DePaul an 11-6 loss last season at the Kia Klassic in Fullerton, Calif.
Notes: Three Blue Devils are hitting above .300, including Amber Patton (.364), Sandy Vojik (.360) and Kate Sheaks (.318). Tracie Adix, an Edmonds, Wash. native (Edmonds-Woodway) and DePaul's only player from Washington state, leads the four-member pitching staff with a 4-0 record and 0.00 earned run average over 26.1 innings, including 19 strikeouts. Megan Huitink has a 3-1 record and 1.30 ERA with 21 strikeouts in 27 innings.

SCOUTING BALL STATE (3-3)
Series vs. UW:
The Huskies lead the series, 1-0.
Last Meeting: Washington defeated the Cardinals 6-3 at the Speedline Invitational in Plant City, Fla., in 2003.
Notes: Two Cardinals are hitting .500 or better, including Amanda Pick (.571) and Katie Pilger (.500). The pair are tied with the team lead with five RBIs. Pick also headlines the three-member pitching staff with a 2-0 record and 0.00 earned run average in 15.1 innings.

SCOUTING UCF (11-10)
Series vs. UW: The Golden Knights lead the series, 1-0.
Last Meeting: UCF defeated the Huskies 1-0 last season in Las Vegas.
Notes: The Golden Knights are led by Cici Alvarez with a .354 average and 10 stolen bases. Kacie Feaster and Breanne Javier are tied for the team lead with 12 RBIs. Allison Kime leads the four-member pitching staff with a 7-3 record and 1.48 earned run average. Kime, who has 83 strikeouts in 75.2 innings, was named the Conference USA Pitcher of the Week last Monday.

SCOUTING NO. 25/RV FRESNO STATE (11-9)
Series vs. UW:
The Bulldogs lead the series 8-7.
Last Meeting: Fresno State defeated the Huskies 8-3 at the Kia Klassic in Fullerton, Calif., last season.
Notes: Two Bulldogs are hitting above .350, including Haley Perkins (.362) and Christina Clark (.358). Clark leads the team with 15 RBIs, while Nicole Willis has driven in 10 runs. Robin Mackin headlines the five-member pitching staff with a 10-5 record and 1.59 earned run average. She has 152 strikeouts in 101 innings.

'PITCHER' PERFECT: Freshman Danielle Lawrie threw a six-inning perfect game Feb. 26 vs. Utah Valley State, becoming just the third Husky to accomplish the feat. She notched a strikeout and two ground outs in the first inning before striking out the next 14 batters faced, sitting the Wolverines down in order in the second, third, fourth and fifth innings. Lawrie opened the sixth frame with two strikeouts before before a foul-out to the catcher ended the inning. The perfect game marked the first since Jamie Graves did it vs. Arizona State in a 3-0 victory on May 9, 1998. Nancy Wagner had Washington's first-ever perfect game on April 26, 1994 vs. Simon Fraser. The Huskies won that game 11-0 in five innings.

FANNING THE COMPETITION: Freshman Danielle Lawrie has struck out 15 batters twice this season. She fanned 15 in seven innings vs. Mississippi Valley State on Feb. 18 and 15 in six innings vs. Utah Valley State on Feb. 26, falling one strikeout shy of the UW record. Lawrie has posted double-figure strikeouts five times this season, which ties for fourth in the conference. Last season, Caitlin Noble set the strikeout record with 16 vs. Willamette in six innings.

LAWRIE AMONG PAC-10 LEADERS: Danielle Lawrie is tied for second in the Pac-10 with 77.1 innings pitched and 11 starts. Her 29 strikeouts looking lead the conference. Opponents are hitting just .172 against the freshman, good for sixth in the Pac-10.

LEFTIES LEAD HUSKIES OFFENSE: Left-handed hitters Ashley Charters, Dominique Lastrapes and Marnie Koziol headline the UW offense with .478, .400 and .389 averages, respectively. Charters has the fifth-best average and on-base percentage (.521) in the conference and ranks second in the league with 32 hits. Lastrapes ranks sixth in the Pac-10 with 21 runs and 26 hits.

KOZIOL OFF TO STREAKING START: Freshman Marnie Koziol opened her collegiate career with a 14-game hitting streak, marking the second-longest streak in the Pac-10 this season (17, Anna Beardman, Stanford). Koziol hit safely in the first 14 games in which she appeared. The streak ended March 3 when Koziol went 0-for-3 vs. Bowling Green.

FAST START FOR FRESHMEN: Washington's freshman class made quite a splash in the opening weekend with all five rookies making at least two starts at the UNLV Alexis Resort Kickoff in Las Vegas, Feb. 10-12 ... 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.

WASHINGTON IN THE POLLS: The Huskies dropped two spots in this week's USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 poll to No. 17. The Huskies have been ranked in the poll for each of the last 159 datings. Washington's streak began with the team's No. 15 preseason ranking in 1994 and also included smaller streaks of 66 straight top-six rankings (2/28/96 - preseason 2001 poll) and 69 consecutive poll datings in the top-10 (preseason 1996 - 2/28/01). Washington also slipped two spots in the ESPN.com/USA Softball top 25 poll to No. 15.

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 designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country, and is considered one of the most prestigious honors in women's collegiate softball. 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 2006 college season is finished. Senior selection rights expire August 31, 2006.

HUSKY FEVER CLASSIC RECAP: The Huskies swept the field at the Husky Fever Classic, notching two wins over both Utah Valley State and Santa Clara. Three of the victories were via the mercy-rule including an 8-0, six-inning decision over UVSC on Feb. 25 and an 8-0, six-inning perfect game by Danielle Lawrie over UVSC on Feb. 26. The Huskies defeated Santa Clara 4-3 on Feb. 25 and 14-3 in five innings on Feb. 26. Dena Tyson led UW with a .667 average (6-for-9), including four doubles and four RBIs. Dominique Lastrapes hit .583 (7-for-12) with eight runs and six RBIs, while Ashley Charters hit .500 (7-for-14) with four RBIs. Lawrie finished the weekend with a 2-0 mark and had 26 strikeouts in 13 innings.

LSU TIGER CLASSIC RECAP: Washington went 4-2 at the LSU Tiger Classic in Baton Rouge, La., defeating Eastern Michigan (9-0), Western Kentucky (7-0) and Mississippi Valley State (3-0), before falling to LSU (2-0) to round out pool play. Washington defeated Western Michigan, 1-0, in the tournament semifinal and lost to LSU in the championship, 4-0. Three Huskies were named to the all-tournament team, including Ashley Charters, Sarah Hyatt and Danielle Lawrie. Charters led the team with a .471 average, eight hits and four runs. Hyatt hit .429 (6-for-14) with two doubles and five RBIs. Lawrie went 2-1 from the circle with a pair of shutouts and 27 strikeouts in 23.2 innings.

UNLV ALEXIS RESORT KICKOFF RECAP: Washington battled back from a season-opening loss to Kentucky (6-1) Feb. 9 to win its next four games to capture the UNLV Alexis Resort Kickoff Classic title. The Huskies defeated then-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.

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 50-28 career record at Washington.

2005 RECAP: Washington took top-ranked and eventual national champion Michigan to a third-and-deciding game at the Super Regional in Ann Arbor, Mich., and lost an 11-2 game to just miss out on the program's eighth Women's College World Series. Michigan won the opening game 4-1 but Washington forced a tiebreaker with a 3-2 victory the next day. The Huskies finished the year with a 35-22 record and 10-11 mark in the Pac-10. Kristen Rivera earned her fourth All-America award and was the Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. Three Huskies received All-Pac-10 honors and three were named to the All-Pacific Region teams (Rivera- 1st, Sarah Hyatt & Dominique Lastrapes- 2nd).

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