#15 Cal Plays Three at Home, Hosting Oregon State, Oregon

April 21, 2009

BERKELEY -

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The Bears return home for a three-game weekend series at Levine-Fricke Field. On Friday, the Bears host the Oregon State Beavers at 3 p.m. Saturday, the Oregon Ducks open a two-game set with a 1 p.m. game. They close out on Sunday with first pitch at 12 noon. The Bears struggled the first time they faced these teams this season in Oregon, going 1-2 on the northern road trip. The Beavers, with their 3-7 mark in the Pac-10, are in seventh place among the eight teams in the Conference. Oregon, with a 2-10 conference mark, are in the cellar. The Bears are 6-1 this season on their home field and have won the last five straight home games.

Cal fell slightly in both polls this week, coming in at No. 16 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top-25 poll and at No. 15 in the USA Today/NFCA poll. The Bears had been ranked at No. 14 in both polls last week. The Pac-10 continues to dominate the polls with four of the top-five teams in the USA Today/NFCA poll coming out of the conference. Arizona, who is currently leading the Pac-10 with an 8-2 conference record, is ranked behind UCLA, Washington, Stanford, and Arizona State in both polls. Oregon and Oregon State are the only teams in the Pac-10 not ranked in the top-25.

Junior short stop Taylor Kelly smashed a grand slam in the final game of the Arizona series this weekend. Kelly had two home runs last week and now has belted six total this season. She had two career HR's coming into 2009.

Sophomore pitcher Valerie Arioto had seven hits in 14 plate appearances last week, making it her second week in a row where she batted .500 or better. Arioto In the three game series against Stanford two weeks ago, Arioto logged five hits in nine at-bats (.556). Arioto brings a six-game hitting streak into the weekend., the longest active streak on the team She has had five multi-hit games during the streak, batting .600 since April 10.

Senior first baseman Gina Leomiti snapped her six-game hitting streak when she went 0-for-3 against Oregon State. She drew a walk in the ASU game, giving her nine straight games in which she reached base safely. That streak came to a halt in the first game against Arizona. Leomiti had a base hit and drew a walk in Sunday's game against Arizona.

Sophomore catcher Sati Houston logged her first collegiate hit against Saint Mary's. Houston singled to right field in the bottom of the fifth inning to drive in the game-winning run for the Bears. This was also her first collegiate RBI.

The Bears ended their stolen base drought. After not swiping a single base in the Stanford series, the Bears have now stolen at least one bag in each of their last four games and were 7-for-8 in stolen base attempts last week. The Bears have a team-record 117 stolen bases this season, leading the Pac-10. Washington and Oregon are the next closest Pac-10 teams in stolen bases, each with 54 this season, 63 fewer than the Bears.

Scouting this week's opponent Cal begins its first of two back-to-back three-game weekend home series hosting Oregon State and Oregon at Levine-Fricke Field. Oregon stunned the Bears when they were in Eugene, winning 7-0. It was only the second time all season the Bears had been shut out in a game. The Bears then dropped their first game at Oregon State 5-4. The Bears went into the bottom of the seventh with a 4-2 lead, but a Beavers rally scored three runs to give them the victory. Cal rebounded with a 12-3 victory over Oregon State. Kelly Taylor and Sanoe Kekahuna each drove in three runs for the Bears. Valerie Arioto homered.

Oregon is second in the Pac-10 in stolen bases with 54 this season. Oregon pitcher Sam Skillingstad is sixth in the Pac-10 with a 2.32 ERA and sixth in strike outs with 125. Neena Bryant leads their offense with a .344 batting average. For the Beavers, Audrey Roderfield is their top hitter with a .328 average.

On Deck The Bears will play their final regular-season non-conference game of the year on Wednesday, April 29 at UC Davis before playing their final three home games of the year, May 1-3, hosting Arizona State and Arizona. The May 1 game will be televised live on Fox Sports Net.

Bears on TV Cal will be on television this season when it hosts Arizona on May 1 in Strawberry Canyon. Fox Sports will broadcast the game on a tape delay and re-air it on a later date still to be determined. The last time there was a TV game at Levine-Fricke Field was in 2005 when Cal played UCLA. The Bears were also on Fresno's Comcast channel 14 for their game against the Bulldogs on Mar. 8, and were on TV on KFVE-TV in Honolulu for the game on March 12 against Hawaii. CBS College Sports carried Cal's game at Stanford on April 9.

Speed Racers Cal ranks third in the nation in steals per game (2.66) and own a school record and Pac-10-best 117 stolen bases in the books (on 132 attempts). The Bears also had a school record nine thefts against George Washington (2/14), and have recorded five or more stolen bases 10 times this season. Freshman Jamia Reid currently owns the school single-season record of 34 steals (No.1 in the Pac-10. No. 7 in the nation) and had an unofficial school record four steals against Providence (3/7). Her twin sister Elia is 23-28 in stolen bases (fifth in the Pac-10), and tied Jamia's output with four steals of her own against Hawaii (3/12), while newcomer Shannon Thomas is 25-27 in stolen bases, ranked third in the Pac-10. The Bears have seven players who are perfect on the base paths this season, including Valerie Arioto who is a perfect 12-for-12 and Frani Echavarria who is 6-for-6.

Pitching Power The Bears pitching tandem of Valerie Arioto and Marissa Drewrey combined to strike out 11 Saint Mary's batters in the game. It was the tenth time this season the Bears' pitchers struck out double-digit batters in a game. Drewrey and Arioto also had a combined one-hitter, the fourth of the year for the staff, but the first time since February 20 that the opposition logged just a single hit. The Bears other three one-hitters came in back-to-back-to-back games between Feb. 15 and 20. Santa Clara, who like Saint Mary's plays in the PCSC conference, was also one-hit in their game against the Bears. The Bears are third in the Pac-10 or strikeouts with 338, just 10 fewer than Washington's conference-leading 348. The Bears' pitchers have doled out 100 more strikeouts than their opposition with Bears' batters logging K's just 238 times this season.

Yard Work The Bears have hit at least one home run in five of their last six games. The Bears, as a team, have 45 total home runs this season and are 4 round trippers away from tying the team record of 49 home runs set in 2007.

No Sophomore Slump for Val Valerie Arioto took over the team lead in batting average, inching past Jamia Reed. Reed is hitting .348 on the season with Arioto improving to .349. Arioto's discerning eye at the plate has helped her work a team-leading 30 walks this season. She is ranked ninth in the Pac-10 in on base percentage with a .479 Arioto led the team last season drawing 48 free passes and posted a .444 OBP. Arioto helped ignite Cal's 12 run game at Oregon State (4/5) when she hit a leadoff home run - her seventh HR of the season. She had her best game of the season at Pacific (3/25) when she went a perfect 3-for-3 with three runs, five RBI and two home runs. She is tied for the team lead in multi-hit games (12) and leads the Bears with 37 runs this year (she scored the second most runs for a season in school history last season with 55), and has nine games in which she scored two or more runs. She has well surpassed her home run total of two last with eight this season. Arioto had another career performance against Santa Clara on Feb. 18 when she blasted her first career grand slam in the second inning and pitched her first shutout of the season, allowing just one hit and striking out nine in the process. She also went 2-for-3 from the dish with two runs and a career-high six RBI - the most since Sanoe Kekahuna had a school-record seven vs. Texas Tech last season. At the Carolina Classic, Arioto fanned a career-high 16 batters against George Washington - tying Marissa Drewrey for the third-most Ks in a game in program history. She has three games this season with 10 or more strikeouts. She fanned 14 batters in 16.0 innings in the Stanford series.

Drewrey in Charge 16-game winner Junior Marissa Drewrey is fourth in the Pac-10 in strikeouts this season with 190 seventh in ERA (2.42), and seventh in opposing batting average (.224). Drewrey compiled a 3-0 record at the Chevron Spring Fling Tournament in Hawaii with a 0.40 ERA, one shutout, allowing just six hits, one earned run, three walks and 20 Ks in 17.1 innings pitched. She tossed a complete game shutout against Memphis (3/11) in the opening game of the tournament, allowing just one walk and scattering three hits with 7 Ks in 7 innings of work. The next game vs. Hawaii (3/12), Drewrey allowed just two hits with a run in five innings, as the Bears blasted Hawaii, 10-1 in five innings. Drewrey then relieved Valerie Arioto in the second inning of the game against St. John's (3/13) the following game (with Cal down 2-0) and dominated the Red Storm by striking out 10 and allowing just one hit with no walks and no runs in 5.1 innings of work to earn the win as Cal rallied for a 6-2 win. It was the fourth time this season that Drewrey has posted 10 or more Ks in an outing this season. She was named the Muscle Milk California Student-Athlete of the Week (2/23) after her performances in the circle at the Cathedral City Classic. Drewrey went 3-1 at the CCC with a 0.33 ERA, two complete game shutouts and 25 strikeouts. Against Ole Miss, Drewrey pitched a one-hit shutout and was two outs away from a perfect game before giving up the lone hit in the seventh inning. Ole Miss scored 10 runs prior to its match up with the Bears and was shutout for just the second time this season. The following game against NC State, Drewrey relieved Valerie Arioto and pitched 6.2 innings and tied her season-high with 11 Ks. Against Maryland, Drewrey again pitched a complete game shutout, scattering four hits and walking just one with 8 Ks in Cal's 7-0 win. Drewrey tossed five shutout innings and recorded 10 Ks (1 hit) against Riverside (3/1), and pitched a two-hit shutout against Providence (3/7).

Power Impact Sanoe Kekahuna leads the Bears in home runs this season with nine and owned the longest hitting streak at nine (3/12-25). The Maui native went 4-for-11 in the Chevron Spring Fling tournament in Hawaii with four RBI, including a 2-run home run against Hawaii (3/12). With the productive weekend, Kekahuna raised her batting average to .317, her highest of the season (now currently at .302). The sophomore picked up her offensive production from Feb. 28 to Mar. 8 when she had six hits, including two home runs, and 10 RBI. Against BYU (3/7) Kekahuna sparked the Bears comeback with a leadoff home run in the fourth inning that cut the deficit in half. She also leads the team in slugging percentage (.566) and has also played solid defense behind the plate with 344 putouts and three errors this season.

Tale of Taylor Taylor Kelly smashed a grand slam against Arizona (4/19), adding four RBI to her season total to give her 24. Kelly had 25 total runs driven in last year. Kelly has been effectively producing runs in important games, with 13 of her 24 RBI coming in Pac-10 games. Kelly has also belted three of her six home runs off Pac-10 pitching. Kelly was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week for the week ending 4/12. Kelly earned the honor for the first time in her career by belting the game (and series)-winning two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh inning in the third game of the Stanford series. Kelly, who entered the season with two career home runs, equalled that mark in the Stanford series alone.

Sizzlin' Sevilla Vernae Sevilla is batting .400 against Pac-10 pitching this season. Sevilla is 11-for-25 at the plate in the nine Pac-10 games she has played in this year. Sevilla also has an impressive .720 slugging percentage in those games with two home runs and a double among her 11 hits. Sevilla went 5-for-9 last weekend in Arizona. She played in two of the three games on the Oregon trip, going 3-for-6. Sevilla has logged multiple hits in three of her last six games.

Jamin' Jamia Jamia Reid broke the school single-season record with her 29th stolen base at Pacific (3/25). Her current 34 steals is also tops in the Pac-10 (sixth in the nation per game). Reid is also second on the team in hits (45) and second in runs with 30. At the Cathedral City Kickoff in the opening weekend, the EA Sports High School All-American went 2-for-5, including a two-run home run in the sixth inning against nationally-ranked Houston. The offensive output didn't stop there as Reid went 2-for-4 with two runs, including her second home run, a three-run job in the second inning against Liberty. Reid continued her torrid pace at the plate with two hits, two runs and two-run home run in the first inning against Illinois. There was no let down in her second week of action at the Carolina Classic. With Cal up 2-0 late in the game against Wichita State, Reid helped widen the lead with a 2-run home run with two outs in the sixth inning. In the 5-1 win over George Washington Reid went 2-for-3 with two runs and three stolen bases, including consecutive steals of second and third base in the fifth inning before scoring. In the final day of the tournament, Reid launched her fifth home run of the season on the very first pitch in the fifth inning. She was the catalyst in the first inning for the Bears when she singled, stole second and then scored courtesy of Gina Leomiti's single, giving Cal the early 1-0 lead. Reid also made some early history with her first 4-for-4 performance at the plate against CS Fullerton (2/27). She hit .533 with five runs, one triple, two RBI, 10 total bases a slugging pct of .667 and eight stolen bases at the Bayer CropSciences Classic hosted by Fresno State. Against Northern Illinois (3/6), the freshman had three hits on four ABs with two runs and two RBI, including a triple and two steals and produced her first career triple. The following game against Providence (3/7), she again went 3-for-4 with two runs and an unofficial school record four steals. She collected two more hits, a run and two steals against Fresno State (3/8). Reid has been selected to two All-Tournament Teams - the Carolina Classic and the Bayer CropSciences Classic.

Quick Notes

Cal began the season 11-1 before falling to Kansas on Feb. 22 - it was the best 12 game start to a season since 2005 ... Cal's highest ranking of the season thus far in the national polls has been 9th... the last time Cal was ranked higher than No. 9 was when it was ranked 5th in late 2006 ... the Bears have a Pac-10 best and school-record 117 stolen bases (on 132 attempts) ... Cal is third in the nation in steals per game (2.75) ... Cal is 17-0 when scoring six or more runs including scoring 12 on Oregon State in their second meeting of the season and eight against Stanford ... the Bears are also 24-6 when scoring first this year ... Cal had a school single game record nine stolen bases against George Washington (2/14) ... Cal has scored 10 or more runs seven times this season ... the Bears pounded out a season-high 15 hits against Stanford (4/11) ... the Bears have logged 10 or more hits in a game seven times this season... Jamia Reid owns the single-season steals record (currently at 34) ... Sanoe Kekahuna owns Cal's longest hitting streak of the season at nine (3/12-3/25) ... Valerie Arioto leads the team in multi-hit games (12) ... Jamia and Elia Reid both recorded single-game records of four steals this season (Elia at Hawaii, and Jamia vs. Providence) ... Gina Leomiti, who led the team in RBI last season, once again leads the team this year with 30 RBI ... playing competitive softball for the first time since high school in Fresno, Nikki Schrey (who played two years of soccer for Cal) has eight runs this season in 23 games ... SP Marissa Drewrey has recorded eight or more Ks eight times this season, including a season-high 11 Ks against Wichita State - she is fourth in the league in strikeouts (190).

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