Third-Ranked Bruins Head to Oregon and Oregon State to Close Out Regular Season
May 6, 2008
THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULE
#3 UCLA at Oregon
Thursday, May 8
#3 UCLA at Oregon State
Friday, May 9
OSU Softball Complex
#3 UCLA at Oregon State
Saturday, May 10
OSU Softball Complex
REGULAR SEASON WRAPS UP IN OREGON
The third-ranked Bruins (43-6, 15-3 Pac-10) conclude regular-season play in Oregon this weekend with three games. UCLA faces Oregon (32-24, 4-13) in Eugene on Thursday before traveling to Corvallis to take on Oregon State (26-29, 4-14) on Friday (3 p.m.) and Saturday (12 p.m.). All three games will feature Gametracker on UCLABruins.com.
NCAA SELECTION SHOW ON SUNDAY
The field of 64 teams for the 2008 NCAA Division I Softball Championship will be announced live at approximately 7 p.m. on Sunday on ESPNU, following the NCAA Division I men's lacrosse game. After the official selection show, ESPNEWS will televise a brief bracket announcement between 7:30 and 8.
BRUINS IN THE POLLS
The Bruins moved up one spot to third in both the ESPN.com/USA Softball and USA Today/NFCA rankings this week. UCLA is tied for third in the NFCA poll and solo third in the USA Softball rankings. Full polls can be seen on page two of this release.
BRUINS ON THE WEB
All UCLA softball regional and super regional games will be broadcast live over the internet at UCLABruins.com with Darren Preston at the call. In addition, every contest will feature Gametracker on the UCLA website.
KAMEKONA EARNS AWARDS TRIFECTA
For the second time this season, a UCLA softball player has been named NFCA, USA Softball and Pac-10 Player of the Week. This time it was junior Amanda Kamekona, who went 6-for-10 (.600) with three home runs and five runs batted in last weekend in wins over #10 Arizona and top-ranked Arizona State.Kamekona joins senior Anjelica Selden, who was named National POW by the NFCA and USA Softball, as well as Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week on Feb. 26.Kamekona had hits in all three games to extend her hitting streak to eight, tying for the longest hitting streak on the team this year with sophomore Megan Langenfeld.After going 1-for-3 against Arizona on Friday, Kamekona went 2-for-3 with four RBI and two home runs against top-ranked Arizona State on Saturday. With the Bruins up 1-0, the junior hit a one-out home run in the third to give UCLA a two-run advantage. Kamekona added another homer in the fifth, this time a three-run shot to make it a 5-0 game. Both home runs came off ASU star pitcher Katie Burkhart.Kamekona continued her home run binge on Sunday with a solo shot to lead off the bottom of the fifth. It was one of three hits for Kamekona, who added singles in the first and seventh for her fourth three-hit game of the season.Kamekona leads the Bruins with 11 home runs and 39 runs scored and raised her season average to .327. She is second on the team with 36 runs batted in and 14 doubles.The conference award marks the ninth time this season that the Bruins have been recognized with Pac-10 Player or Pitcher of the Week honors, a league-best total. Freshman GiOnna DiSalvatore is a two-time Player of the Week (Feb. 12 and Feb. 26), while freshman Samantha Camuso earned the honor on April 8. Three different pitchers have earned POW accolades. Selden has won the honor three times (Feb. 26, March 11 and April 1), while Langenfeld (April 29) and freshman Donna Kerr (March 4) have also picked up the award.Kamekona's NFCA POW award marks the 19th in UCLA history, while the USA Softball honor is the 10th for the Bruins. Kamekona shared this week's USA Softball award with Massachusetts' Brandice Balschmiter.
BRUINS IN THE NCAA RANKINGS
Senior Anjelica Selden is in the national Top 10 in four statistical categories, including seventh in earned run average at 0.78. She is 10th in three other categories: strikeouts per seven (10.2), fewest walks per seven innings (0.98) and fewest hits allowed per seven (3.61). Freshman Donna Kerr is right behind Selden in ERA, placing ninth at 0.86. She is also seventh in fewest hits allowed at 3.51 and 29th in strikeouts per seven at 8.7. Completing the UCLA pitcher trifecta is sophomore Megan Langenfeld, who is tied for 10th with five saves.
A WELL-ROUNDED TEAM
Only a select number of teams can claim to be among the nation's best in hitting, pitching and fielding. UCLA is one of those elite teams, ranking in the national Top 20 in batting average, earned run average and fielding percentage. The Bruins are 15th in hitting at .316, second with a 0.95 ERA and 13th with a .975 fielding percentage. The only other team that is in the Top 20 in all three categories this week is 16th-ranked Louisiana-Lafayette. The Bruins as a team also rank fifth in the nation in winning percentage (.878), 18th in doubles per game (1.57), 37th in slugging percentage (.449) and 47th in scoring (4.90 runs per game).
BRUINS IN THE PAC-10 RANKINGS
UCLA maintained its top spot among Pac-10 teams in earned run average (0.95) and fielding percentage (.975) and remains second in batting average at .316. On offense, the Bruins rank in the top half of the conference in slugging percentage (3rd, .449), on base percentage (3rd, .391), hits (T-3rd, 409), triples (T-3rd, 6), sacrifice flies (T-3rd, 9) and doubles (4th, 77). In the circle, UCLA is first in opposing batting average (.150) and second in strikeouts (443). On an individual level, senior Anjelica Selden is back atop the conference in ERA at 0.78, also placing third in opposing batting average (.149), fourth in wins (22) and fifth in strikeouts (249). During Pac-10 games, Selden leads the league with a 0.70 ERA and a .167 opposing batting average. Freshman Donna Kerr is second overall in ERA (0.86) and opposing batting average (.147), while sophomore Megan Langenfeld is first in saves (5), fifth in opposing batting average (.157) and sixth in ERA (1.57). Offensively, the Bruins have three of the top seven hitters in the conference, with all three being freshmen. Samantha Camuso is third at .382, GiOnna DiSalvatore is fifth at .373 and Katie Schroeder is tied for seventh at .364. Full team and individual Pac-10 rankings can be found on page six of this release.
SCORING = WINNING
Sounds simple enough, right? Well it really holds true for the Bruins, who are 43-2 when scoring at least one run and have been shutout in four of their six losses. For only the second time this season, UCLA lost despite getting on the board in Sunday's 5-2 setback to Arizona State. The other loss for the Bruins came on Feb. 16 to Illinois (6-2). Scoring first of course has been the key, as UCLA is 39-0 when crossing home plate first and just 4-6 when the opponent scores the initial run. The Bruins are also 25-0 when scoring in their first at-bat. However, another streak came to an end on Sunday, as the Bruins dropped their first game of the year when hitting a home run. UCLA had a homer in all three contests last week and is now 17-1 when leaving the yard.
For the most part this season, the Bruins have manufactured their runs with plenty of singles, doubles, sacrifice hits and walks. But this weekend, UCLA brought out the big bats, belting five home runs in its three-game series with the Arizona schools. Facing the two top home run hitting teams in the Pac-10, it was the last place team in that category that out-homered Arizona State and Arizona by a 5-2 margin. Junior Amanda Kamekona hit three out, while freshmen GiOnna DiSalvatore and Monica Harrison also had homers, with Harrison's coming as a walk-off bomb against Arizona on Friday. Adding in two home runs at Stanford on April 27, the Bruins have seven home runs in their last four games. To put last weekend's home run display in perspective, the Bruins had seven homers in their previous 27 games coming into the road contest at Stanford two Sundays ago.
NO BOMBS AWAY
The Bruin offense had a fantastic weekend leaving the yard, but the UCLA pitching staff has done a masterful job all season in terms of keeping the ball in the park. The Bruins are one of just two teams along with top-ranked Florida to allow fewer than 10 home runs this season. UCLA has given up nine, while Florida has allowed six dingers.
WINNING THE NAIL BITERS
Great teams win close games and the Bruins have been doing just that, posting a 16-1 record in contests decided by two runs or less. UCLA won another nail biter on Friday against Arizona with a 2-1 victory thanks to freshman Monica Harrison's walk-off home run in the bottom of the seventh. The win improved UCLA to 11-1 in one-run games. The Bruins are also a perfect 5-0 in two-run contests. The only loss for UCLA in a one-run game was on March 12 in a 1-0, eight-inning defeat against Cal State Fullerton.
SCOUTING THE DUCKS
Oregon is coming off a 1-2 weekend at home against the Bay Area schools, falling to Stanford and splitting with California. The Ducks are 32-24 overall and 4-13 in Pac-10 play, digging themselves an early hole in conference action with a 1-9 start. But Oregon is 3-4 in its last seven Pac-10 contests, including wins over ranked teams Arizona and Cal. For the season, the Ducks have two players batting over .300 in sophomore Neena Bryant (.341) and freshman Cortney Kivett (.314). Bryant leads the team with nine home runs and 42 runs batted in, while Kivett leads the squad with 33 stolen bases. As a team, Oregon has swiped 104 bases this year. The Ducks' bats have slowed during Pac-10 play, hitting just .167 with three home runs. Sophomore Blair Williamson is the top batter during conference action, hitting at a .296 clip. In the circle, junior Melissa Rice owns a team-low 2.17 ERA, an 11-10 record and 85 strikeouts in 125 2/3 innings. Also seeing action in the circle is senior Alicia Cook (2.21, 15-10, 168 IP, 140 K) and freshman Brittany Rumfelt (2.72, 6-4, 74.2 IP, 28 K). All three pitchers have started at least four games in league action, with Cook posting all four Pac-10 wins to go with a team-best 3.34 ERA in conference.
THE MATCHUP: BRUINS VS. DUCKS
The Bruins blanked the Ducks in both contests earlier this season at Easton Stadium, winning 2-0 on March 29 and 12-0 in five innings the following day. UCLA was held to two hits in game one, but made the most of them by scoring twice. Freshman Donna Kerr and sophomore Megan Langenfeld combined on a four-hitter in the circle, collectively striking out 10. The following afternoon, the Bruins scored five in both the first and second and two more in the third en route to the run-rule victory. Sophomore Julie Burney and freshman Monica Harrison each drove in three, while Burney, senior Krista Colburn and freshman Katie Schroeder all had two-hit performances. Senior Anjelica Selden and Langenfeld combined to strike out nine in a six-hitter. UCLA leads the all-time series with Oregon 63-12, having claimed eight in a row as it looks for its third straight season sweep of the Ducks. The Bruins have won three in a row in Eugene, where they hold a 30-5 advantage. Oregon's last victories in the series came in 2005 when it swept UCLA.
SCOUTING THE BEAVERS
Oregon State will need to win all four games this week to have a chance at making the postseason, as it brings a record of 26-29 (4-14 in Pac-10) into Tuesday's game against Portland State. The Beavers have dropped seven in a row. Oregon State is batting .266 on the season and is led by sophomore Dani Chisholm, who holds a team-best .328 average and 15 stolen bases. Freshman McKenna Lowe is also hitting above .300 at .303 with 11 steals. Senior Cambria Miranda leads the team with nine home runs. The Beavers are batting .207 during Pac-10 play, led by freshman Erin Guzy's .313 average. Oregon State has nine homers and 19 steals in league action. In the circle, sophomore Kelly Dyer has started 16 of the 18 Pac-10 games and has earned the win or loss in each of the Beavers' last 13 contests. She holds a 17-23 overall record with a 2.74 ERA and in Pac-10 play she is 4-13 with a 3.00 ERA.
THE MATCHUP: BRUINS VS. BEAVERS
UCLA shutout Oregon State in its first meeting of the year, a 3-0 victory at Easton Stadium on March 28. Sophomore Megan Langenfeld had two RBI and senior Krista Colburn and freshman GiOnna DiSalvatore each posted two hits. Senior Anjelica Selden and Langenfeld combined on a two-hitter in the circle, as Selden fanned eight. The win improved the Bruins to 74-9 all-time against the Beavers. UCLA is 31-5 in Corvallis, but lost last year's meeting 7-0. The Bruins are still 6-2 in their last eight at the OSU Softball Complex.
JELLY ON A ROLL
Senior Anjelica Selden earned two wins in the circle during her final Pac-10 series at Easton Stadium last weekend, besting #10 Arizona and top-ranked Arizona State. Selden tossed a two-hitter against the Wildcats on Friday and followed that up with a five-hit shutout of the Sun Devils on Saturday to become just the second pitcher to blank ASU this season. Including a relief appearance on Sunday in which she threw 3 1/3 shutout frames against Arizona State, Selden allowed just one run in 17 1/3 innings (0.40 ERA) with 17 strikeouts. On the season, Selden leads the team and the Pac-10 with a 0.78 earned run average. The senior is also tops on the squad with a 22-3 record, 20 complete games, six shutouts and 249 strikeouts in 170 2/3 innings. In the national rankings, Selden is seventh in ERA. She is also 10th in three more categories: strikeouts per seven innings (10.2), fewest walks per seven (0.98) and fewest hits allowed per seven (3.61). It has been a milestone campaign for the two-time All-American, who has moved into second at UCLA in wins and appearances this season after coming into the year second in complete games and innings pitched. Selden became the 15th Division I pitcher to reach 1,300 strikeouts on April 6 against California and 12 days later she earned her 100th career victory to become the 34th D-I hurler to accomplish that feat. Entering this weekend, the senior has 1,355 strikeouts and 103 wins. UCLA's all-time strikeout leader set a new personal best for a seven-inning game with 17 against Northwestern on Feb. 24 and also set a career high for punch outs in a five-inning game in her very next contest with 14 against James Madison on Feb. 29. Selden has 10 double-figure strikeout games this season and 64 for her career. She has been named Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week on three occasions (Feb. 26, March 11 and April 1), giving her 10 POW awards for her career. She stands one behind Keira Goerl's 11 POW accolades, the most for any Bruin pitcher. One of the most decorated pitchers in UCLA history has also been bestowed with National Player of the Week awards from the NFCA and USA Softball (Feb. 26). In addition, Selden is a finalist for the USA Softball Player of the Year and Lowe's Senior CLASS awards.
The smallest player on the Bruin roster came up with the biggest weekend last week, as junior Amanda Kamekona went 6-for-10 (.600) with three home runs and five RBI en route to earning NFCA and USA Softball National Player of the Week and Pac-10 Conference Player of the Week honors. Kamekona had hits in all three games last weekend to extend her hitting streak to eight. On Saturday, the junior went deep twice off of All-American Katie Burkhart, including a three-run shot in the fifth that cemented a 5-0 victory against Arizona State. Kamekona went deep again on Sunday against the Sun Devils to give her a team-best 11 home runs on the year. During her eight-game hitting streak, Kamekona is batting .429 with a .929 slugging percentage, four home runs, seven RBI, six runs scored and two doubles. She has three multiple-hit games during the streak to give her 13 on the season and posted her fourth three-hit contest of the year on Sunday. Having hit six of UCLA's last 11 home runs, Kamekona has moved into a tie for ninth in the Pac-10 in dingers. Along with leading the team in homers, Kamekona, who is batting .327, is first in runs scored (39), slugging (.654) and sacrifice hits (10), tied for first in stolen bases (8) and second in doubles (14), runs batted in (36) and game-winning RBI (7). Of Kamekona's 36 RBI, eight came in a Feb. 9 contest against Santa Clara, which set a UCLA single-game record. Breaking the old mark of Julie Marshall, who had seven RBI in a game against Oregon on April 17, 1999, Kamekona had a two-run homer, a two-run double, a three-run double and a sacrifice fly against the Broncos.
HERE WE GO, KATIE SCHRO!
One of the hottest Bruin bats of late has been the one carried by freshman Katie Schroeder, who has hits in 12 of her last 13 games. She is batting .390 over the last baker's dozen contests with five runs scored and two runs batted in. Schroeder has three multiple-hit games during the stretch to give her 16 on the season, which is second on the squad. Last weekend, Schroeder went 2-for-3 on Friday against 10th-ranked Arizona and followed that up with a hit in both of the contests against Arizona State. On Saturday, Schroeder had a single and scored a run and on Sunday, the freshman had a two-out, run-scoring double in the fourth to get the Bruins on the board. The freshman had a seven-game hitting streak from April 5-19 and enters this week's play with at least one hit in five in a row. Schroeder is third on the team with a .364 batting average and tied for seventh among Pac-10 players. She is also fourth with 26 runs scored and third with 17 walks and seven stolen bases. Twice this season, Schroeder has posted four-hit games, going 4-for-5 with four RBI and three runs scored against Santa Clara on Feb. 9 and 4-for-5 against Rutgers on March 8. On March 25 in a doubleheader at UC Santa Barbara, Schroeder posted back-to-back three-hit performances, completing the twin bill 6-for-9 with three runs scored. She also has three-hit efforts against Long Beach State (March 9) and California (April 6).
KC AT THE BAT
Senior Krista Colburn will make her final Pac-10 road trip this weekend and comes into it fourth on the team with a .341 batting average and first with 30 walks. The senior has collected hits in seven of her last nine games, with one of those base knocks being her first home run of the season. On April 27 in her last at-bat in Palo Alto, Colburn hit her 18th career homer in the Bruins' 4-1 victory over Stanford. It was the first home run for Colburn since May 11, 2007 at Arizona State. Colburn finished the weekend with two runs scored and three runs batted in, driving in a pair in a win at California on April 25. Two weeks ago in Seattle, the Washington native had a fantastic series, going 5-for-8 in two Bruin victories. Colburn had her second three-hit game of the season on April 18 and came back with another multiple-hit effort one day later against the Huskies, going 2-for-4 while scoring twice and driving in a run. Colburn ranks seventh among conference players with her 30 walks and is ninth in the Pac-10 and second on the club with a .453 on base percentage. The All-American became the 20th member of UCLA's 200-hit club when she doubled in the fifth inning of the March 28th Pac-10 opener against Oregon State. She has five multiple-hit games during Pac-10 play to give her 14 this season and 57 for her career. The 14 multiple-hit contests places her fourth on the team. Colburn has also been sharp on the defensive side of things, having not made an error in 61 chances this season.
It's not too often you see a closer in softball, since most teams have their pitcher's go the distance each time they take the ball. But when you have the benefit of three solid pitchers as the Bruins do, a change of pace late in the game can baffle opposing hitters. So to go along with all of her hitting success, add closer to sophomore Megan Langenfeld's repertoire. Langenfeld earned her second career Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week honor on April 29 after posting a 0.00 ERA in 9 1/3 innings and picking up a win and a save against the Bay Area schools. On April 25 at California, the sophomore pitched a four-hitter, allowing two unearned runs while striking out six. One day later at Stanford, Langenfeld relieved freshman Donna Kerr in the fifth and tossed 2 1/3 innings of hitless relief, striking out three to record her fifth save of the year. Langenfeld's save set a new UCLA single-season record and gave her six as a Bruin. She is just one behind the all-time school mark of seven set by Lisa Longaker. Langenfeld, who is 7-1 on the year, enters this week first in the Pac-10 in saves and tied for 10th in the country. She is third on the team and sixth in the conference with a 1.57 ERA and has 57 strikeouts in 53 2/3 innings. The sophomore has only 10 walks on the season and had an amazing stretch of 111 straight batters without issuing a free pass. Another impressive feat was Langenfeld's 27 2/3 scoreless innings streak, which ran from Feb. 27 to April 5. At the plate, Langenfeld is hitting .339, placing first with a .486 on base percentage (sixth in Pac-10), second in walks (27) and home runs (5) and third in runs batted in (33). Langenfeld compiled a team-best eight-game hitting streak from March 8-28 in which she posted a .455 average (10-for-22). She also drove in a run in six straight games from March 13-30, including a pair of RBI in three of those contests. Langenfeld leads the team with 10 multiple-RBI contests this season.
With a two-hit effort on Sunday against #1 Arizona State, freshman Samantha Camuso moved back to the top spot in batting average at .382. Camuso and fellow freshman GiOnna DiSalvatore have been flip-flopping in the top spot over the last few weeks. But thanks to a .429 average (9-for-21) over the last seven games, Camuso is back in first, also placing third among Pac-10 players. The freshman also leads the team with 15 doubles, is second in slugging (.556), third in on base percentage (.438) and fourth in runs batted in (32). Two weeks ago in the Bay Area, Camuso had a pair of multiple-hit contests, including a 5-for-7 performance in two games at Stanford (April 26-27). With another two-hit effort on Sunday, Camuso moved into third place on the team with 15 multiple-hit contests. She also has seven multi-RBI games and five game-winning RBI. She had a walk-off winner on March 9 against nationally-ranked Long Beach State on a double in the eighth. Eight days before that, Camuso had another game-winner, driving in the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth to help UCLA beat ranked San Diego State. Camuso earned her first Pac-10 Player of the Week honor on April 8 after going 6-for-13 (.462) in four Bruin victories over Washington, Stanford and California. The freshman has two home runs on the season, hitting them both during the opening weekend. Her first career jack came against nationally-ranked Oklahoma on Feb. 8 for UCLA's first homer of the year. One day later, Camuso added a grand slam against Santa Clara. She went 4-for-4 with seven RBI against the Broncos and touched home plate five times to set a new school record for runs scored in a single game. Camuso would have tied another single-game record with her seven runs batted in, but she was eclipsed by teammate Amanda Kamekona's eight RBI.
TWO HANDFULS OF GAME-WINNERS
Freshman GiOnna DiSalvatore recorded her 10th game-winning RBI of the season on Saturday in the Bruins' 5-0 victory over #1 Arizona State. It was the freshman's solo home run, her third jack of the year, in the second inning that gave the Bruins the only run they would need. DiSalvatore has hits in eight of her last 10 games, holding a .364 average (12-for-33) with three runs scored and two doubles. Four of those 10 games have been two-hit contests, which has moved DiSalvatore into the team lead with 17 multiple-hit games. The freshman leads the club with 39 runs batted in and is third with 27 runs scored, 13 doubles, three home runs and a .542 slugging percentage. A two-time Pac-10 Player of the Week, DiSalvatore ranks in the conference Top 10 in four categories, including fifth in average. DiSalvatore claimed her first Player of the Week award after an opening weekend in which she went 10-for-14 (.714) with nine RBI, five runs scored and four doubles at the Stacy Winsberg Memorial Tournament. DiSalvatore hit her first career home run on Feb. 9 against UC Santa Barbara, a three-run, two-out shot in the bottom of the seventh that tied the game and sent it to extra innings before UCLA won it in the eighth. It was the first of numerous heroic efforts for DiSalvatore, who broke a 2-2 tie with a bases-clearing double in the fifth in a 5-2 win over nationally-ranked Georgia on Feb. 22, which led to her second POW award. She also drove in the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh on an RBI double in a 2-1 victory over Notre Dame on March 7.
Senior Ashley Herrera made her triumphant return to the Bruins' lineup this weekend, starting all three games at third base. The senior missed 38 games after suffering a dislocated left ankle while sliding into third base against Illinois on Feb. 16. Herrera had one hit in six at-bats last weekend, laying down a perfect bunt single on Saturday against #1 Arizona State. She also had a successful sacrifice bunt in her first at-bat in 2 1/2 months on Friday against #10 Arizona. For the season, Herrera has 18 hits in 35 at-bats (.514) with 10 runs scored and four sacrifice hits.