Softball Kicks Off 2009 Season in Cathedral City

Feb. 3, 2009

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LOOKING AHEAD — The Oregon State softball team (0-0) opens the 2009 softball season at the Cathedral City Kick Off in Cathedral City, Calif., at the Big League Dreams Sports Park. The Beavers will face the Southern Illinois Salukis (0-0) and the Wisconsin Badgers (0-0) first on Friday at 3:00 and 8:00 p.m. Oregon State will then take on the No. 22 Georgia Bulldogs (0-0) and James Madison Dukes (0-0) on Saturday at 3:00 and 5:30 p.m. before wrapping up the tournament against the No. 13 Houston Cougars (0-0) on Sunday at 9:00 a.m.

 

TRACKING THE BEAVS — Full results from this week’s games can be found through the newly redesigned www.osubeavers.com. Live stats are available for all of the games through GameTracker. GameTracker can be found by accessing the 2009 Oregon State softball schedule.

 

GAME 1: southern illinoisFriday, Feb. 6 (3:00 p.m.): Oregon State is 1-0 all-time against Southern Illinois.

 

Southern Illinois is coming off of a 30-24 season, finishing third in the Missouri Valley Conference with a 15-8 record in 2008. The Salukis return 13 letterwinners from last season, including six position starters and all three of their pitching staff. Head coach Kerri Blaylock begins her 10th season at the helm of the program.

 

GAME 2: wisconsinFriday, Feb. 6 (8:00 p.m.): Oregon State is 5-1 all-time against Wisconsin. The Beavers have won the last two with the last meeting taking place on May 21, 2005, where Oregon State won 8-2 at the Madison, Wis., NCAA Regional.

 

Wisconsin went 15-40 last season, 3-17 in the Big Ten for a 11th place finish. The Badgers return 12, losing six, and return six position players and both pitchers from last season. Chandelle Schulte begins her 10th season as head coach of the program.

 

GAME 3: no. 22 georgiaSaturday, Feb. 7 (3:00 p.m.): Oregon State is 1-2 all-time against Georgia. The Bulldogs have won the last two meetings with Oregon State picking up its lone win on Feb. 21, 2004, against then sixth-ranked Georgia at the Palm Springs Classic.

Georgia’s 2008 season ended at the NCAA Super Regional, resulting in a 17th place final ranking for the Bulldogs. Overall, Georgia finished 46-24 and 14-14 in the Southeastern Conference, good for fifth overall and third in the east. The team returns 10 from last year’s squad including eight position players and two pitchers. Head coach Lu Harris-Champer begins her ninth season leading the Bulldog program.

 

GAME 4: james madisonSaturday, Feb. 7 (5:30 p.m.): Saturday’s game marks the first meeting between Oregon State and James Madison.

 

James Madison finished 2008 with a 32-22 overall record. In the Colonia Athletic Association, the Dukes finished third with a 14-6 record. The team returns eight position starters, losing one, and two of last year’s four-pitcher staff returns. Overall, the Dukes return 16 letterwinners. Katie Flynn returns for her seventh season as head coach.

 

GAME 5: no. 13 houstonSunday, Feb. 8 (9:00 a.m.): Oregon State and Houston will meet for the first time on Sunday.

 

Houston is coming off an NCAA Tournament appearance, which ranked it as the national No. 8 seed. The Cougars fell in the super regional, but finished 54-11 overall, ranked 12th, after ending conference play with a 21-2 mark and regular season championship. Houston returns 12 from last year’s roster, including All-Americans Laurie Wagner and Jessica Vails. The team returns seven position starters and one pitcher from last year’s team and welcome seven newcomers. Head coach Kyla Holas begins her ninth season leading the Cougars.

 

season openersOregon State is 10-12 in its season opener since 1987. Under head coach Kirk Walker, the Beavers are 7-7. The last time Oregon State won its season opener was in 2005 at UC Santa Barbara.

 

POINTS IN THE POLL — Oregon State received four votes in the USA Today/NFCA Division I Preseason Top 25 Poll, released Jan. 20. The votes tie the Beavers for 40th with three other schools. In the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Preseason Top 25 poll, released Jan. 27, the Beavers received five votes, good for 32nd.

 

tough competition The Oregon State softball team will continue with its tradition of a tough schedule. In 2009, the Beavers will face 18 teams from the 2008 NCAA Tournament (three of those being College World Series teams), 13 from the NFCA Preseason Top 25 with four of those being in the top 10. Oregon State will face three more that received votes in the poll.

 

PAC-10 PREVIEW ­— Oregon State is predicted to finish tied for seventh this season with 10 votes in the Pac-10 Coaches Preseason Poll. UCLA was voted tow in the conference with three first place votes and 43 total points. Arizona State was second with 41 points and two first place votes, and Washington is predicted to finish third with two first place votes and 36 total. Arizona, Stanford and California follow, and Oregon was the other team to receive 10 votes.

 

TICKET INFORMATION ­— Tickets are available for home softball games by walk-up purchase only at the OSU Softball Complex. Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $4 for seniors and children. Admission is free for Oregon State students with valid ID card.

 

2008 RECAP — The 2008 softball season was one full of expectations and record setting performances by the Beavers, led by senior utility player and two-time All-American, Cambria Miranda. Miranda earned her fourth All-Pac-10 nod with second team honors to lead four others on the All-Pac-10 teams. Junior Paige Lowe, who also was the lone Beaver to receive All-Pacific Region honors, sophomores Dani Chisholm and Kelly Dyer and freshman Erin Guzy all earned honorable mention. Guzy added Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team honors with Audrey Roderfeld joining her. Freshman McKenna Lowe earned All-Freshman Honorable Mention. Roderfeld was the lone Oregon State player to earn Pac-10 Player of the Week honors for Mar. 11-17. The 2008 season held highlights of nearly defeating the No. 1 team in the country, Arizona State, at home in a 12-inning thriller, taking the series from No. 23 Washington and Oregon and upsetting No. 3 UCLA in the final weekend of the season, but the team came up just short of its 10th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance with a 28-31 record.

 

OSU SOFTBALL COMPLEX — The Oregon State softball complex opened in April of 2001. The $1.5 million dollar complex features 750 bleacher backed seats, a concession and restroom facility, as well as one of the top playing surfaces in the nation. The sunken dugouts each contain a restroom for players as well as large storage areas. The press box facility, one of the best in the Pac-10, allows ample seating for six scorers in the main booth with two smaller television/radio booths located on both sides. A state-of-the-art sound and public address system are housed in the press box. Oregon State has hosted seven fall tournaments since the OSU Softball Complex opened in 2001. The facility was home of the 2006 NCAA Regional and Super Regional Tournaments - with Oregon State winning both, and earning its first ever trip to the NCAA Women’s College World Series. Additional bleacher seating was added for the NCAA postseason games and a plan is in the works to add lights to the facility.

 

what’s next for the beaversThe Beavers head to the Louisville Slugger Invitational, hosted by UNLV. Oregon State will face Cal State Fullerton, No. 15 DePaul, Utah, UC Davis and Southern Utah in the three-day tournament in Las Vegas, Nev.

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