No. 1 UW To Host Husky Softball Classic

Feb. 25, 2009

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HUSKY SOFTBALL CLASSIC - SEATTLE, WASH.

Husky Softball Stadium • All Times Pacific

Friday, Feb. 27
Seattle vs. Portland State, Noon
No. 1/3 Washington vs. Seattle, 3:00 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 28
Seattle vs. Boise State, 10:00 a.m.
Portland State vs. Boise State, 12:30 p.m.
Washington vs. Portland State, 3:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 1
Boise State vs. Seattle, 10:00 a.m.
Washington vs. Portland State, 12:30 p.m.
Washington vs. Boise State, 2:30 p.m.

All games available via Gametracker

THIS WEEK
The No. 1/3 Washington Husky softball team stays home to host the Husky Softball Classic, Friday, Feb. 27-Sunday, March 1. The Huskies will entertain Boise State, Portland State and Seattle University in the fourth annual tournament held at Husky Softball Stadium. Last year, UW went 3-1 in the Husky Softball Classic, including a 6-3 win over then-No. 1 Alabama.

UW will play single games on Friday and Saturday, against Seattle and Portland State, respectively, before playing the final two games of the tournament on Sunday, with a re-match against the Vikings and a first-ever meeting with Boise State.

HUSKY CLASSIC TIDBITS
Fans who come out to the weekend's games will receive free schedule magnets and team posters. The weekend also marks the Husky Softball Camp Reunion. Additionally, those coming to the softball games Saturday straight from the men's basketball game against Arizona will receive free entry with their basketball ticket stub.

FOLLOW THE ACTION LIVE
All eight games this weekend will be available via Gametracker on www.gohuskies.com, with live streaming audio and video of all four Husky games also available. No live chat will take place during the Husky Softball Classic.Fans can follow along for occasional updates during the season on the UW Softball Twitter page by logging on to www.twitter.com/UWSoftball. The Huskies can also be found on Facebook via the Washington Softball fan page at the following link http://www.facebook.com/pages/Washington-Husky-Softball/46364349899

NEW NUMERO UNO
The Huskies 14-0 start has given them their first No. 1 ranking since the 2000 season. UW used a 5-0 weekend in the Campbell Cartier Classic, including a 1-0 win over No. 2 Florida, to move into the top spot in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll. It also marks the first time the Huskies have ever been ranked No. 1 in the ESPN.com poll, which has been in existence since 2003.

UW has made a steady rise up the polls in the first three weeks of the season, going from No. 15 to No. 7 to No. 3 to No. 1 in the ESPN.com poll while improving from No. 21 to No. 10 to No. 7 to No. 3 in the NFCA/USA Today poll since the preseason.

The Huskies finished the 2008 season unranked - the first time since the program's inaugural season in 1993 UW did not finish the season ranked but they are now up to their highest ranking since they went into the 2000 Women's College World Series as the top team in the land.

LAST WEEK
The Huskies went 5-0 in the prestigious Cathedral City Classic, including an exciting 1-0 nine-inning win over No. 2 Florida. UW also earned victories over Long Island, Mississippi, Nebraska and No. 23 Ohio State, the latter of which was also an exciting 1-0 game which the Huskies won in the bottom of the eighth inning.

UW opened the weekend holding off a pesky Long Island team, 7-3, with Felecia Harris getting the complete-game victory and Ashlyn Watson and Ashley Charters each providing home runs. The Florida showdown more than lived up to the hype as the No. 2 Gators and No. 3 Huskies stayed scoreless through nine innings with All-Americans Danielle Lawrie and Stacey Nelson dueling in the circle. The Huskies finally got the victory on freshman Kimi Pohlman's ninth-inning RBI single and Lawrie fanned 12 Gators and allowed just two hits to win the duel.

After an 8-2 win on Saturday, Sunday was the Danielle Lawrie show as she struck out 31 batters combined over two games, pitching back-to-back shutouts over the Cornhuskers and Buckeyes. She threw a one-hitter in the 6-0 win over Nebraska with 15 Ks and followed with an eight-inning, two-hit shutout with 16 Ks over Ohio State. Ashley Charters came through with the game-winning, walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth to make UW 14-0 for the first time in school history.

SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION:
Boise State (4-5)
Series vs. UW: First Meeting
About Boise State: Boise State is in its first year as a Division I softball program and they have gotten off to a solid start despite carrying 11 freshmen. The Broncos have won four games including a victory over Long Beach State, which was ranked in the pre-season top 25. The Broncos are batting .254 as a team, third in the WAC. Freshman Aubray Zell has all four of the Broncos' wins in the circle and has a 2.28 ERA while Christina Capobianco leads the team with a .320 average.

Series History: This weekend will be the first meeting between the two teams in regular season play although they did meet for a doubleheader this fall, with the Huskies coming away with wins of 10-0 and 9-3.

Portland State (7-7 2009, 31-27 2008 )
Series vs. UW: UW leads 32-1
About Portland State: The Vikings are 7-7 this season but have a couple of big victories to their credit, including an 8-1 victory over No. 16 DePaul and a 6-1 win over Oklahoma State. Head coach Tobin Echo-Hawk is in her first season and is looking to take the Vikings back to the NCAA Tournament after their first Division I postseason trip in 2006. Portland State is led at the plate by Jackie Heide, who is batting .429 with five home runs through 14 games, and 2008 PCSC Freshman of the Year Arielle Wiser, who is second in average at .383. Sophomore Nichole Latham has earned four of the Vikings' seven wins in the circle.

Series History: The Vikings are coming off their first-ever win over UW in the series after knocking off the Huskies, 4-2, in last year's Husky Softball Classic to snap a 32-game losing streak in the series.The Huskies had shutout PSU 18 times in their first 32 victories but the series has become more competitive over the years.

Seattle (2-3)
Series vs. UW: First Meeting
About Seattle: Like Boise State,Seattle is in its first year as a Division I softball program but the team has competed in Division II over the last several years. The Redhawaks have already earned a couple impressive victories over Illinois-Chicago and Loyola Marymount. Three Seattle players are hitting over .400. Katie Peterson leads the team with a .455 average while Lisa Hill has gone deep three times already. Freshman Hannah Klein has both of Seattle's wins this season in the circle.

Series History: The teams will be meeting for the first time in an official game but they did face off in UW's Fall Tournament this season, with UW winning 8-0 on a 18-strikeout performance by Danielle Lawrie.

WOMAN OF THE WEEK
Danielle Lawrie picked up an impressive trifecta this week, sweeping the National Player of the Week awards along with earning Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week after her efforts in the Cathedral City Classic. Lawrie earned her second consecutive Pac-10 honor and also added the USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week award and the Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division I Player of the Week. It marks the first National POW award for Lawrie in her career and her sixth Pac-10 honor. She is the first Husky to sweep the awards and the first to earn any national POW honor since Dena Tyson in 2007.

THE LAWRIE LEDGER
Lawrie went 3-0 in the Palm Springs Classic without allowing an earned run in 23 innings while striking out 43 batters and allowig just five hits. She threw three shutouts, two of which were in extra innings against ranked teams, including one against one of the most powerful lineups in the country in Florida.

Lawrie started with a nine-inning, two-hit shutout of Florida, which came into the game batting .376 as a team. She struck out 12 and allowed just two bunt singles. Against Nebraska, the junior allowed a leadoff single then retired the next 21 batters, just missing her second career pefect game. She struck out 15 to set a season high, then topped herself with 16 Ks in a two-hit, eight-inning shutout of Ohio State.

QUEEN K
Danielle Lawrie came into this season already holding UW's single-season strikeout record and just two weeks into the season she became its career leader as well. Going into the Campbell Cartier Classic, Lawrie needed just 14 strikeouts to equal Jennifer Spediacci's career school record and she nearly broke it in the first game of the weekend. Lawrie struck out 12 UC-Santa Barabara hitters to get within two, then tied the record with two Ks in the first inning against San Diego State. One inning later, she broke the record, becoming UW's all time leader with 895 strikeouts.

NEARING A K OF Ks
With 951 career Ks, Lawrie is in rare company as she and Stanford senior Missy Penna are the only active pitchers in Division I softball with 900 or more strikeouts. She needs just 49 more to reach the 1,000 milestone and 191 more to break into the NCAA Top-25 career leaders in Ks. Lawrie's 11.1 strikeouts per seven innings ratio is No. 5 all time, behind such names as Cat Osterman, Monica Abbott and Angela Tincher.

WATSON SWINGING HOT BAT
Ashlyn Watson came into this season with an obvious ability to hit the long ball but she struggled her first three seasons staying healthy and putting it all together in the batter's box. A career .219 hitter coming into 2009, Watson is leading the Huskies with a .441 average, four home runs and 13 RBI. She has been as consistent as they get, hitting safely in 10 of 13 games. The senior hit .333 (3x9) in the opening weekend, .556 (5x9) in the second weekend and .438 (7x16) last weekend against some top competition. She was the only Husky to notch two hits against No. 2 Florida's All-American Stacey Nelson and she belted her third and fourth home runs of the season in wins over Long Island and Nebraska.

QUITE A STREAK
With her three shutouts over the weekend, Lawrie has not allowed an earned run in 52.1 consecutive innings, dating back to a two-run home run she allowed to Loyola Marymount on Feb. 7. In fact, those two runs mark the only two earned runs Lawrie has allowed all season. She is 9-0 with a 0.22 ERA and six shutouts, striking out 107 batters and walking just 11 in 64.1 innings.

Lawrie is still far from either the Pac-10 or NCAA records for scoreless innings streaks. The NCAA record is 105 held by Massachusett's Danielle Henderson (3/16-5/2, 1999) while the Pac-10 record is held by Debbie Doom, who went 102 consecutive innings without allowing a run in 1984.

WHAT A START
With their win over Florida Friday night, the Huskies improved to 11-0, breaking the school record for best start to a season. The previous best start was put together by the 2002 team, which kicked off the season 10-0. The 2009 team has extended the record by imprvoving to 14-0.

ROLLING, ROLLING, ROLLING
The Huskies' current 14-game winning streak is the fifth-longest in school history and the longest since the 2000 team won a school record 23-games in a row. The 2000 team - also the last Husky squad to be ranked No. 1 - went 9-0 before falling to LSU, then won 23 in a row to start the season 32-1.

CATHEDRAL CITY CLASSIC RECAP - 2/13-2/15
The Huskies came out swinging the hot bats in San Diego and it resulted in a 4-0 record. UW outscored their four opponents (UCSB, Utah State, San Diego State and Long Beach State), 38-4, batting .409 as a team and banging out six doubles, three triples and four home runs. The Huskies won two games by the five-inning mercy rule, including a 16-3 route of Utah State, the most runs by a UW team since a 22-1 outburst against Nevada in 2005. In the final game of the weekend against No. 25 Long Beach State, the Huskies tied a season high with 15 hits and used an 11-run third inning to breeze to a 4-0 record in the tournament. Danielle Lawrie was named Pac-10 Pitcher the Week after the weekend, going 3-0 without allowing a run in 18.1 innings and striking out 28 batters.

RED DESERT CLASSIC RECAP - 2/6-2/8
In the Huskies first weekend of action in St. George, Utah, they were reminded just how much they missed their three stars who missed the entire 2008 season for various reasons. UW started the season 5-0, which included a 2-1 season-opening victory over No. 12 Tennessee. Junior All-American pitcher Danielle Lawrie went 3-0 in the circle with a 0.64 ERA, striking out 36 batters in 22.0 innings while allowing just eight hits and two earned runs. Senior two-time All-American Ashley Charters led the team with a .429 (6x14) batting average, six runs scored and four RBI - including a grand slam - while senior All-Pac-10 outfielder Lauren Greer was right behind Charters with a .417 average (5x12), three runs and four RBI, including a game-winning three-run jack against LMU.

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