Fifth-Ranked Bruins Take on #1 Washington in Pac-10 Opener
March 30, 2010
Thursday, April 1
6 p.m. - #5 UCLA at #1 Washington
Friday, April 2
6 p.m. - #5 UCLA at #1 Washington
Saturday, April 3
12 p.m. - #5 UCLA at #1 Washington
Gametracker and live audio (Friday and Saturday only) at UCLABruins.com
BRUINS CLASH WITH HUSKIES IN PAC-10 OPENER
The fifth-ranked Bruins (26-4) travel to Seattle this weekend to face #1 Washington (28-2) in a three-game series at Husky Softball Stadium. Thursday and Friday's contests begin at 6 p.m., while Saturday's game starts at 12 p.m. Gametracker will be available for all three games, while links to audio broadcasts for Friday and Saturday's contests can be found on the softball schedule page at UCLABruins.com.
UCLA opens its Pac-10 home schedule next weekend against Arizona State at Easton Stadium. On Friday, the teams play at 7 p.m., with that contest being televised on tape delay by Fox Sports Net. The UCLA band will also be in attendance for the Pac-10 home opener. Saturday's game, which starts at 6 p.m., is ASA Day, with a large crowd expected. The weekend concludes with a 12 p.m. game on Sunday.
BRUINS IN THE POLLS
UCLA is fifth in both the USA Today/NFCA and ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 polls. The Bruins remained at fifth for the third straight week in the NFCA rankings, while moving up one spot in the USA Softball poll. UCLA had been sixth in the USA Softball rankings for the previous three weeks. In the Pac-10 preseason poll, the Bruins were third (with one first-place vote), behind Washington and Arizona.
BRUINS ON THE WEB
Gametracker will be available for all UCLA softball games this season at UCLABruins.com. In addition, all Pac-10 contests starting with next week's home series against Arizona State will be broadcast on the UCLA website.
BRUINS IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Thanks to a good hitting and pitching week, the Bruins moved up to second in the nation in batting average (.350) and third in earned run average (1.26). UCLA is also in the top 40 as a team in five other categories: fifth in slugging (.585), eighth in scoring (7.10), ninth in home runs per game (1.43), 19th in doubles per game (1.63) and 38th in fielding percentage (.968). Individually, sophomore Aleah Macon is ninth in the country in earned run average (0.81), while junior Donna Kerr is ninth in fewest hits allowed per seven innings at 3.25. The entire list of the Bruins in the national rankings can be found on page 5 of this release, including the would-be rank of senior Megan Langenfeld, who has missed nine games this season and is not eligible for having not played in at least 75% of the Bruins' contests. The senior is currently at 70% (21-for-30) and would be in the national Top 15 in six statistical categories.
In the first game of last Saturday's doubleheader against UNLV, the Bruins scored seven of their eight runs with two outs and that continues a trend they have had throughout the season, as nearly half of the team's runs have been scored with two outs. Of the 213 runs scored by UCLA, 98 of them have come with two outs for a 46.0 percentage. The Bruins have 86 two-out RBI, with an additional 12 runs coming across on errors, wild pitches or passed balls with two down. Senior Megan Langenfeld leads the team with 17 two-out RBI, followed by senior Julie Burney (14) and junior GiOnna DiSalvatore and sophomore Samantha Camuso with 12 apiece.
SCOUTING THE HUSKIES
Washington enters Pac-10 play with the conference's best record at 28-2. The Huskies were 5-1 when they reeled off 18 straight victories before a March 19 loss to DePaul. Since that setback, Washington has won five in a row, including a doubleheader sweep at Portland State last Saturday. As a team, the Huskies are batting .328 with 43 home runs and 51 stolen bases, averaging 7.0 runs per game. Sophomore Niki Williams (.416) and junior Jenn Salling (.409) are both batting above .400. Williams has added seven home runs and 28 runs batted in, while Salling has six homers, 26 RBI and eight steals. Senior Danielle Lawrie leads the team with 11 home runs and 40 runs batted in, adding a .364 average. Three others are also batting above .300. In the circle, Lawrie is a perfect 18-0 with a 0.98 earned run average and 195 strikeouts in 122 innings. Freshman Baily Harris is the second pitcher for the Huskies, boasting a 2.56 ERA, a 9-2 mark and 16 strikeouts in 63 innings.
THE MATCHUP: BRUINS V. HUSKIES
The Bruins claimed the season series over the Huskies last year, winning both contests at Easton Stadium. UCLA earned a 2-0, 11-inning victory on April 10 on a two-run, walk-off homer by Andrea Harrison. One day later, Megan Langenfeld tossed the 100th no-hitter in Bruin history in a 10-0, five-inning triumph. Julie Burney and Dani Yudin each drove in three runs and homered, while Kaila Shull posted two runs batted in. In the third game in Seattle on April 29, the Bruins were no-hit by Danielle Lawrie in a 3-0 setback. UCLA leads the all-time series 43-22 and are 17-12 in Seattle. The Bruins won both meetings at Husky Softball Stadium in 2008 by scores of 2-1 and 4-0. Langenfeld has not allowed an earned run in her last 28 2/3 innings against the Huskies and is 3-1 with a 0.76 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 36 2/3 innings in her career versus Washington. At the plate, she is hitting .308 (8-for-26) with four runs batted in. Harrison, Samantha Camuso and Katie Schroeder are each hitting .300 in their careers against the Huskies.
As she begins her final Pac-10 Conference season, senior Megan Langenfeld enters the series with Washington first on the team in batting average (.561), home runs (9), slugging (1.140), on base percentage (.679) and walks (15). She is also second with 28 runs batted in and 25 runs scored. In her lone game last week, Langenfeld went 2-for-3 with an RBI, a run scored and a walk against Long Beach State on Friday. It was her 10th multiple-hit game of the year, which ranks third on the squad. Langenfeld has four games with three hits against Cal Poly (Feb. 19 and March 23), Portland State (Feb. 21) and Northwestern (Feb. 27), driving in multiple runs in each contest. She drove in four runs thanks to a grand slam in her first game against Cal Poly and had a three-run shot in the March meeting with the Mustangs. The senior also had three RBI against Northwestern and Portland State, homering against the Vikings. Langenfeld has hitting streaks of eight (Feb. 19-27) and six (Feb. 13-17) games this season and has posted at least one base knock in 18 of her 21 contests. She has also reached base in every game this season via either a hit, walk or hit by pitch. In the RBI department, the senior has nine games with at least a pair of runs batted in, which ranks second on the team. Langenfeld has an RBI in 14 of 21 games. She homered in the first game of the season against Florida Atlantic (Feb. 13) and has also left the yard against UC Santa Barbara (Feb. 17), Cal State Northridge (Feb. 20), Texas (Feb. 26), Baylor (Feb. 27) and UC Riverside (March 3). The senior has scored multiple runs in a game eight times, including three apiece in both ends of a doubleheader at UCSB. In the circle, Langenfeld is 4-1 with a 1.14 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 43 innings. The senior tossed a career-high 13 innings in a hard-luck, 4-2 loss against Michigan on Feb. 14. She allowed only one earned run and six hits while striking out six in a 182-pitch effort. Langenfeld threw 23 more pitches later in the day when she tossed a 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts against Georgia for her first save of the season. Her four wins have come against Tennessee (Feb. 13), UC Davis (Feb. 20), Northwestern and Long Beach State. She pitched five shutout innings and struck out four against the Lady Vols and fanned six in six shutout frames against UC Davis.
Sophomore Andrea Harrison had hits in all five contests last weekend and carries a nine-game hitting streak into the Washington series. Harrison has raised her average 47 points over the last nine games and is hitting .375, which is fourth on the team. She is also third with seven home runs and a .677 slugging percentage, second with eight doubles and fifth with 23 runs batted in and 21 runs scored. The junior hit three home runs in last Sunday's doubleheader at Loyola Marymount, belting a two-run shot in the first game and a pair of solo home runs in the nightcap for her first career, two-homer contest. Harrison has driven in runs in five straight games, including a season-best three against UNLV in the second game of Saturday's twinbill and two with a home run against Long Beach State on Friday. She has seven multiple-RBI games, which ranks third on the team. Harrison drove in two apiece against UC Santa Barbara (Feb. 17), Cal State Northridge (Feb. 19) and CSU Bakersfield (March 21). Harrison's current nine-game hitting streak is not her longest of the season, as she hit safely in a career-high 10 straight from Feb. 19-27, batting .417 (15-for-36) with six runs batted in and a pair of home runs. The sophomore has 11 multiple-hit games, which is tied for the team lead, with all of them being two-hit contests and five of them coming over the last eight games. Harrison has scored two runs in a game seven times this season, including four times last weekend. She has also left the yard against Cal State Northridge, Baylor (Feb. 27) and CSU Bakersfield.
Freshman B.B. Bates had multiple hits in all five games last weekend, raising her average 70 points to .369, which ranks fifth on the team. Bates had three hits in the first game of doubleheaders against UNLV and Loyola Marymount last weekend and had two base knocks in the other three contests. She also drove in runs in both ends of Saturday and Sunday's twinbills, including a pair in the first game against UNLV and the second contest at LMU. Bates leads the Bruins with 38 hits and five stolen bases and has added two homers, 16 runs batted in, 22 runs scored and 11 walks. The freshman is tied for the team lead with 11 multiple-hit contests. She has been very hot of late, with eight of her multi-hit games coming in March. The freshman also had two hits in both games of a doubleheader at CSU Bakersfield on March 21, as well as two against Fresno State on March 5. Bates has five multi-RBI contests, with two of them coming last weekend. Her first two collegiate home runs came in back-to-back games against Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 24) and Colorado State (Feb. 26). She had three RBI and two hits against Fullerton and a pair of RBI and hits against Colorado State. Bates had a nine-game hitting streak from Feb. 21 to March 5 in which she hit .387 (12-for-31) with eight runs batted in, four runs scored and a pair of homers. She has at least one hit in 25 of her 30 games. Bates has scored multiple runs in a game five times and had her first, two stolen-base contest against UC Davis on Feb. 20.
Junior Donna Kerr won her team-best 12th game of the season on Sunday in the second game of a doubleheader at Loyola Marymount and enters this weekend having not allowed an earned run in her last 17 1/3 innings. Kerr pitched three times last weekend, allowing no earned runs while striking out seven over five innings in a no-decision on Friday against Long Beach State. The junior came back with four hitless innings of relief to earn a victory against UNLV on Saturday before fanning 10 in a two-hit performance at LMU. On the season, she is 12-1 with a team-high 101 strikeouts in 73 1/3 innings. The junior holds a 1.34 earned run average and five complete games. Kerr has held opponents to a team-low .134 batting average and has been a part of seven of the Bruins' 15 shutouts. Four of those blankings have been solo shutouts for Kerr against Cal State Northridge (Feb. 19), North Carolina (March 10), CSU Bakersfield (March 21) and LMU. Kerr has struck out at least eight batters in eight of her 13 starts, including a season-best 11 against Florida Atlantic (Feb. 13) and Northridge. She also has nine-strikeout performances in wins against Georgia (Feb. 14), Portland State (Feb. 21) and CSU Bakersfield and eight apiece against Fresno State (March 5) and North Carolina. Kerr received the third Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week award of her career on Feb. 23 after tossing 13 scoreless innings with 23 strikeouts in wins over UCSB (Feb. 17), CSUN and Portland State. She allowed only one hit in all three of those appearances.
MACON THEM MISS
Sophomore Aleah Macon struck out a season-high 11 in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader at Loyola Marymount and comes into this weekend's play with a team-low 0.81 earned run average, an 8-1 record and 75 strikeouts in 60 2/3 innings. Macon leads the Bruins with two saves and seven complete games and has four solo shutouts, which is tied for the team lead. She had thrown 23 consecutive scoreless innings until allowing a run against LMU, but still holds a 0.26 ERA with only one earned run over her last 27 innings. The sophomore has given up one earned run or fewer in all but one of her 16 appearances this season. Macon blanked Cal Poly on Feb. 19, striking out six, and also has shutouts against UTEP (March 6) and CSU Bakersfield (March 21), fanning five and six, respectively. The sophomore has five games with at least seven strikeouts this season. She fanned nine against UC Santa Barbara (Feb. 17) and Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 24), eight against Colorado State (Feb. 26) and seven against UNLV last Saturday. Macon, who has yet to allow a home run this season, has also recorded saves against Fresno State (March 5) and Cal Poly (March 23).
HOT BAT FOR THE HOT CORNER
Senior Julie Burney had hits in all five games last weekend and homered for the eighth time this season in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader at Loyola Marymount. She went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI against the Lions and had another multiple-hit, multiple-RBI contest in the second game of Saturday's twinbill with UNLV, going 2-for-2 with three runs batted in and a double. Burney's eight home runs and .698 slugging percentage rank her second on the team, as she also leads the squad with 32 runs batted in to go with her .360 batting average. The senior is tops on the team with 10 multiple-RBI games. Six of those contests came during Burney's career-high, nine-game hitting streak (Feb. 14-24) in which she batted .538 (14-for-26) with five homers and 20 runs batted in. Burney drove in a run in each of the last eight games of her hitting streak. She had four RBI against Cal State Northridge (Feb. 20) and Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 24), recording her first career, two-homer contest against the Matadors. Burney has also homered against UC Santa Barbara (Feb. 17), Cal Poly (Feb. 19), UC Davis (Feb. 20), North Carolina (March 10) and CSU Bakersfield (March 21), recording three runs batted in against UCSB and Davis. The senior has six multiple-hit games, going 3-for-3 against UCSB and Fullerton and posting two-hit contests against Northridge and Baylor (Feb. 27).
Joining the long list of players who had hits in all five games last weekend was junior GiOnna DiSalvatore, who also posted her eighth multiple-hit contest of the season when she went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and a double in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader against UNLV. She added single hits in the other four contests, driving in a pair of runs against Long Beach State on Friday. DiSalvatore is batting .379, which ranks third on the team. Her 28 runs scored and nine doubles lead the squad, while she is also fourth with 24 runs batted in and tied for second with 12 walks. DiSalvatore tied a career high with a nine-game hitting streak from Feb. 14-24. In the midst of that streak, she put her name alongside Olympian Natasha Watley when she had nine consecutive hits. After posting a hit in her last at-bat against Georgia on Feb. 14, DiSalvatore went 7-for-7 in a doubleheader at UC Santa Barbara on Feb. 17. In game one, she went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and followed that up with a 4-for-4 effort in the nightcap with a career-high six runs batted in on a two-run double, an RBI double and a three-run homer. DiSalvatore ran her consecutive hits streak to nine with a first-inning RBI single against Cal State Northridge (Feb. 20), which tied her with Watley. She fell just one short of the school record of 10 consecutive hits held by Lisa Fernandez and Stacey Nuveman. For her efforts, DiSalvatore was named Pac-10 Player of the Week for the third time in her career on Feb. 23, hitting .682 with 12 runs batted in and two homers in seven games. She went 4-for-4 with three RBI, three runs and a homer against Portland State (Feb. 21), also posting two-hit contests against Tennessee (Feb. 13), Texas (Feb. 26), Northwestern (Feb. 27) and Cal Poly (March 23). Her third homer of the season came against the Longhorns. DiSalvatore has five multi-RBI contests, recording three against Texas and two against Tennessee. She has also scored three times in a game on four occasions and two times twice.
HITTING IN THE TWO HOLE
One of the hottest Bruins of late has been junior Monica Harrison, who is batting .442 (19-for-43) over her last 14 games. She has hits in 12 of her last 14, with five of those contests being multiple-hit games. Harrison went 2-for-2 with two RBI in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader against UNLV for her eighth multiple-hit contest of the season. She had a pair of three-hit games against UC Riverside (March 3) and CSU Bakersfield (March 21). Harrison had a pair of doubles and a run scored against the Highlanders and had three RBI, two runs scored and a home run against the Roadrunners. The junior also has two-hit games against Tennessee (Feb. 13), UC Davis (Feb. 20), Portland State (Feb. 21), Ohio State (Feb. 28) and Cal Poly (March 23). Harrison had a career-high, seven-game hitting streak from Feb. 27 to March 21, hitting .572 (12-for-21) with four runs batted in and four doubles. On the season, Harrison is batting .330 with two home runs and 12 runs batted in. She is third on the squad with 23 runs scored and seven doubles and first with eight sacrifice hits. Harrison has scored in 19 of 29 games this season, including twice in four contests. The junior hit her first home run of the year against Tennessee.
Sophomore Samantha Camuso posted her first, three-hit game of the season on March 21 in the first game of a doubleheader at CSU Bakersfield, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Camuso is second on the team with a .383 average, third with 26 runs batted in and a .667 slugging percentage and fourth with six home runs. The sophomore also ranks second in on base percentage (.463) and tied for second with 12 walks. Camuso has hits in 11 of her last 14 games, including four multiple-hit contests. She had a pair of two-hit affairs against Long Beach State (March 26), Fresno State (March 5) and UTEP (March 6), driving in a pair against the Miners. Camuso also has two-hit contests against Florida Atlantic (Feb. 13), UC Santa Barbara (Feb. 17), Cal State Northridge (Feb. 19), Colorado State (Feb. 26) and Texas (Feb. 26), giving her nine multiple-hit games this season. The sophomore has six games with multiple RBI, which is fourth on the team. Her season high came in the first game of a doubleheader at UCSB when she had four to go along with a home run. She also has three-RBI games against Northridge and Cal Poly (Feb. 19), homering in both contests. Camuso, who redshirted last season with a shoulder injury, homered in her first game back against Florida Atlantic on Feb. 13. She has also left the yard against Colorado State and Texas. Camuso has scored twice in a game four times and has reached base in all but four of her contests this season.
MERCY MERCY ME
The Bruins set a school record on Feb. 20 when they posted their fifth-straight, mercy-rule victory against UC Davis (8-0 in six innings). The streak began on Feb. 17 when UCLA swept both ends of a doubleheader at UC Santa Barbara by scores of 14-0 in five innings and 11-1 in six. On Feb. 19, the Bruins continued the streak with a 9-0, five-inning win against Cal State Northridge and an 8-0, five-inning triumph against Cal Poly. UCLA had recorded four-consecutive, mercy-rule wins on several occasions prior to setting the new mark. Of the Bruins' 26 victories, 13 of them have come by mercy rule.