No. 2 Softball to Host Hillenbrand Invitational

Feb. 24, 2003

Next Up for the Cats

The No. 2 Arizona softball team (17-2) will host the Hillenbrand Invitational on Feb. 28- March 2. On Feb. 28, Arizona is scheduled to play New Mexico State (2-16) at 3 p.m. and Dutch National Team at 5 p.m. On March 1, the Cats play Northern Iowa (7-4) at 3 p.m. and San Diego State (6-4) at 5 p.m. On Sunday, March 2, the No. 3 seed will play the No. 4 seed at 10 a.m. and the No. 1 seed will play the No. 2 seed at noon.

Worth Invitational

Last weekend, Arizona hosted the Worth Invitational and ended the weekend with a 4-1 record. On Friday, Feb. 21 senior Lovie Jung hit her ninth home run of the season to lead the Cats to an 11-0 win over Drake University. Later that day, Arizona fell to Oklahoma State, 1-0. On Friday, Feb. 22, Arizona beat Virginia, 13-1. The Cats then defeated Western Michigan, 10-0. Arizona concluded the Worth Invitational with a, 8-0 win over New Mexico. Junior Mackenzie Vandergeest hit her fourth home run of the season. Oklahoma State won the Worth Invitational with a 5-0 record.

In the Circle

Freshman Alicia Hollowell ended the weekend with a 2-1 record. Hollowell had her second loss of the season against Oklahoma State, 1-0. The Cowgirls had one hit against Hollowell, a home run in the sixth inning. Over the weekend, Hollowell had a 0.82 ERA. She pitched 17 innings and struck out 25 batters. She allowed four hits and two runs. She also had one shutout. Hollowell is 9-2 this season with six shutouts and a 0.39 ERA. Junior Wendy Allen ended the tournament with a 2-0 record. She pitched six innings and struck out eight. Allen had a 0.00 ERA. Allen is 7-0 this season with a 0.64 ERA. Freshman Leslie Wolfe pitched five innings and had a 0.00 ERA. She struck out seven and gave up four hits.

ASA Player of the Year Nominees

Lovie Jung, Mackenzie Vandergeest and Alicia Hollowell are among 40 players named to the initial 'watch list' for USA Collegiate Player of the Year by the Amateur Softball Association. The ASA gave its first award last season to UCLA's Stacey Nuveman.

The Coach

Arizona's Mike Candrea carries a career record of 943-186 (.835), accomplished in 17 years with the Wildcats. The 2002 Pac-10 co-Coach of the Year has led UA to six national titles andsix Pacific-10 Conference championships. Last season, he became only the third Division I coach in history to win 900 games. He's on his way to become only the second coach to win1,000 games. During his tenure, Wildcat student-athletes have won the Honda Softball Award fives times (Susie Parra-1994, Jenny Dalton-1996, Nancy Evans-1998, Jennie Finch-2001, 2002). Candrea's Arizona teams have played in 16 consecutive NCAA Tournaments and 15 consecutive College World Series. Last season, Candrea's team made it to the College World Series Championship game before losing to California, 6-0. Candrea is joined by assistant coaches Nancy Evans and Larry Ray.

Hillenbrand Stadium

UA carries a record of 317-19 in Hillenbrand Stadium. The Cats had an average attendance of 1,755 and drew in a total of 49,140 in 2002. Arizona set an attendance record of 3,161 fans on April 9, 2002 against UCLA. Arizona had a three-season 70-game home winning streak snapped by UCLA on April 7, 2002.

Going, Going, Gone

Arizona has hit 21 home runs in 19 games this season, including three grand slams. Lovie Jung leads the way with nine home runs and one grand slam. Junior Mackenzie Vandergeest and sophomore Jackie Coburn are second with four home runs. Vandergeest also has one grand slam. Last year's team hit 93 home runs with 13 grand slams.

UA Softball Notes

The Cats 0-1 loss to Oklahoma State was the first home tournament loss since Feb. 5, 2000 when Arizona lost to Washington, 0-1... Hollowell has struck out 117 batters this season... Junior transfer Erin Palomarez leads the team with a .500 batting average... Palomarez has a .600 on base percentage... Senior Lovie Jung leads the team in runs scored (24), doubles (10), total bases (67), RBI (28) and home runs (9)... Freshman Autumn Champion has a 10 game hitting streak... Champion has a .533 batting average with runners in scoring position... Arizona has scored 63 runs in the fourth and fifth innings...

Typical Lineup

Autumn Champion, lfCourtney Fossatti, rfLovie Jung, ssWendy Allen, dh/pMackenzie Vandergeest, cJackie Coburn, 3bErin Palomarez, 1bLisha Ribellia, 2bCrystal Farley, cfAlicia Hollowell, p
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