Softball Opens Season in San Diego

Feb. 7, 2006

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The UCLA softball team, ranked second in both national pre-season polls, opens its 2006 season on Thursday afternoon in San Diego at the Campbell/Cartier Tournament, hosted by San Diego State. The Bruins return every player from last year's NCAA runner-up squad except for bullpen catcher Nicole Sandberg, who did not play in a game last season.

Five Bruins Named to USA Softball Watch List
Among the 50 players named by the Amateur Softball Association to the fifth annual USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year Award are five UCLA players. Seniors Caitlin Benyi, Andrea Duran and Emily Zaplatosch are joined by junior Jodie Legaspi and sophomore Anjelica Selden comprise 10 percent of the national list. UCLA's Stacey Nuveman won the inaugural USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year Award in her senior season of 2002.

A player does not have to appear on the inital watch list to be considered as a Top-25 finalist, but once the Top-25 is named on April 5, the remaining finalists must be selected from that list. The list will be cut to 10 players on May 10 and three finalists will be announced May 31 with the 2006 winner being named during the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City in June.

Ticket Sales Underway for March 15 vs. Michigan
Although UCLA does not generally sell advance tickets for softball, tickets for the Bruins March 15 game against Michigan are currently on sale. The game, which features a rematch of the 2005 NCAA Championship Series participants, is scheduled for a 6 pm PT first pitch and will be nationally televised on ESPN2.

UCLA vs. Campbell/Cartier Opponents
This is the season-opening tournament for all teams, as Thursday, February 9, is the first permissible play date per NCAA rules.
Sacramento State: UCLA leads series 19-5. Last Meeting: The Hornets won, 2-1, on Feb. 17, 2000 at the Paradise Softball Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Cal Poly: UCLA leads series 15-3. Last Meeting: UCLA won 4-0 in both meetings at the 2004 Clovis Auto Row Classic in Fresno, Calif. Notable: Mustangs head coach Jenny Condon coached with UCLA assistant coach Gina Vecchione at Oregion State, while both of Condon's assistants, Keira Goerl and Claire Sua, were members of UCLA's back-to-back NCAA Championship Teams in 2003-04.
UC Santa Barbara: UCLA leads series 58-2, Last Meeting: UCLA swept a doubleheader, 5-1 and 9-1 on January 30, 2005 at UCSB. Notable: Gauchos head coach Kristy (Howard) Schroeder, is a 1994 UCLA graduate.
UMass: UCLA leads series 2-0. Last Meeting: UCLA won 4-0 on May 21, 1992, in the opening game of NCAA Regionals at UCLA.
San Diego State: UCLA leads series 53-2. Last Meeting: UCLA won 2-0 on March 13, 2004, at the Clovis Auto Row Classic in Fresno, Calif. Notable: Aztecs Associate Head Coach Kelly (Howard) Warren is a 1996 UCLA graduate and sister of UCSB head coach Kristy Schroeder.

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