Huskies Head To Waco
March 2, 2006
UP NEXT: The No. 13/15 (ESPN.com/NFCA) Washington softball team (12-3) travels to Waco, Texas this week to participate in the Compass Invitational, hosted by Baylor. The Huskies, who swept the field at the Husky Fever Classic last week, will open play vs. Bowling Green (10 a.m.) and Mississippi State (12:30 p.m.) on Friday, March 3. UW will face Mississippi State (12:30 p.m.) and Baylor (3 p.m.) on Saturday, before closing out the round robin tournament vs. Bowling Green (9 a.m.) and Baylor (11 a.m.) on Sunday.
LAST TIME OUT: The Huskies won the Husky Fever Classic over the weekend with a pair of wins over Utah Valley State and Santa Clara. Washington defeated UVSC 8-0 in six innings and Santa Clara 4-3 on Saturday, before defeating UVSC 8-0, in a six-inning perfect game thrown by freshman Danielle Lawrie, and Santa Clara 14-3 in five innings.
SCOUTING BOLWING GREEN (6-0)
Series vs. UW: The Huskies lead the series, 2-0.
Last Meeting: Washington defeated Bowling Green 5-4 on Feb. 22, 1997 in Las Vegas.
Notes: The Falcons are led by Gina Rango, last week's MAC Player of the Week, with a .556 average (10-for-18) and three home runs, while Megan McPherson boasts a .353 (6-for-17) average. Liz Vrabel headlines the four-member pitching staff, which holds its opponents to a .186 bating average. Vrabel has a 3-0 record, 0.95 ERA and has struck out 21 batters in 14.2 innings.
SCOUTING MIsSISSIPPI STATE (13-0)
Series vs. UW: The Huskies lead the series, 2-0.
Last Meeting: Washington defeated Mississippi State, 8-0, on May 16, 2003 at the regional tournament in Lincoln, Neb.
Notes: Three Bulldog players are hitting above .400, including Hayle Guess (.488), Courtney Bures (.486) and Nakita Boyce (.442). Guess leads the team with nine extra-base hits, while Bures leads the squad with 14 RBIs. Pitchers Ragan Blake and Stephanie Comeaux have combined for all 13 wins and seven shutouts. Blake has a 7-0 record, 0.47 ERA and 54 strikeouts in 45 innings. Comeaux has a 6-0 record, 0.92 ERA and 30 strikeouts in 32 innings.
SCOUTING BAYLOR (9-5)
Series vs. UW: First meeting
Notes: The Bears, who are hitting .334 as a team, are coming off a 3-2 record at the Palm Springs Classic. The team is led by Brette Reagan with a .537 (22-for-41) average, including five home runs and 17 RBIs, while Harmony Schwethelm is hitting .388 (19-for-49). Lisa Ferguson headlines the four-member pitching staff with a 1.44 ERA, 5-1 record and two shutouts.
KOZIOL OFF TO STREAKING START: Freshman Marnie Koziol boasts a 14-game hitting streak and has hit safety in every game she has appeared in this season. Koziol is leading the team in hitting with a .462 average. Junior Dominique Lastrapes had a nine-game hitting streak before going 0-for-3 in the LSU Tiger Classic championship game on Feb. 19. The UW hitting streak record is 21 games, set by Rosie Leutzinger during the 2000 season.
PERFECT GAME: Freshman Danielle Lawrie threw a six-inning perfect game Feb. 26 vs. Utah Valley State, becoming just the third Husky to ever accomplish the feat. She notched a strikeout and two ground outs in the first inning before striking out the next 14 batters faced, sitting the Wolverines down in order in the second, third, fourth and fifth innings. Lawrie opened the sixth frame with two strikeouts before before a foul-out to the catcher ended the inning. The perfect game marked the first since Jamie Grave did it vs. Arizona State in a 3-0 victory on May 9, 1998. Nancy Wagner had Washington's first-ever perfect game on April 26, 1994 vs. Simon Fraser. The Huskies won that game 11-0 in five innings.
FANNING THE COMPETITION: Freshman Danielle Lawrie has struck out 15 batters twice this season. She fanned 15 in seven innings vs. Mississippi Valley State on Feb. 18 and 15 in six innings vs. Utah Valley State last Sunday, falling one strikeout shy of the UW record. Lawrie has posted double figure strikeouts three times this season and ranks fourth in the conference. Last season, Caitlin Noble set the strikeout record with 16 vs. Willamette in six innings.
LAWRIE AMONG PAC-10 LEADERS: Danielle Lawrie ranks fourth in the Pac-10 with 55.2 innings pitched and second with eight starts and seven wins. Her 27 strikeouts looking lead the conference. Opponents are hitting just .158 against the freshman, good for sixth in the Pac-10.
SLAPPERS LEAD HUSKIES OFFENSE: Slap-hitters Marnie Koziol and Ashley Charters headline the UW offense with .462 and .458 averages, which rank fifth and sixth in the conference, respectively. Charters also ranks second in the Pac-10 in hits (23) and is tied for fourth, with teammate Dominique Lastrapes, in on-base percentage (.519).
FAST START FOR FRESHMEN: Washington's freshman class made quite a splash in the opening weekend with all five rookies making at least two starts at the UNLV Alexis Resort Kickoff in Las Vegas, Feb. 10-12 ... Marnie Koziol led the Huskies with a .700 average (7-for-10) ... Ashlyn Watson hit two home runs ... Alicia Matthews hit at a .357 clip, including a two-RBI double ... Danielle Lawrie went 3-0 from the circle, striking out 31 batters in 19 innings.
WASHINGTON IN THE POLLS: The Huskies held onto the No. 15 spots in this week's USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 poll. The Huskies have been ranked in the poll for each of the last 158 datings. Washington's streak began with the team's No. 15 preseason ranking in 1994 and also includes smaller streaks of 66 straight top 6 rankings (2/28/96 - preseason 2001 poll) and 69 consecutive poll datings in the top 10 (preseason 1996 - 2/28/01). Washington rose one spot in the ESPN.com/USA Softball top 25 poll to No. 13.
TWO HUSKIES NAMED TO POTY WATCH LIST: Washington junior Dominique Lastrapes and freshman Danielle Lawrie are among 50 Division I players named to the USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year watch list. Lastrapes is named to the list for the second consecutive year, while Lawrie is the only freshman on the list. The award, given out by the Amateur Softball Association, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country, and is considered one of the most prestigious honors in women's collegiate softball. Past winners of the award include UCLA's Stacey Nuveman, Florida State's Jessica Van der Linden and two-time winner Texas pitcher Cat Osterman.
Aimee Minor DRAFTED INTO THE NPF SENIOR DRAFT: Aimee Minor has been drafted by the Connecticut Brakettes in the second round of the 2006 Senior College Player Selections. Minor is one of 30 athletes selected by seven National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) teams over four rounds. Due to NCAA regulations, an active college senior athlete may not sign with her respective franchise until their 2005 college season is finished. Senior selection rights expire August 31, 2006.
ALEXIS RESORT KICKOFF RECAP: Washington battled back from a season-opening loss to Kentucky (6-1) Feb. 9 to win its next four games to capture the Alexis Resort Kickoff Classic title. The Huskies defeated then-No. 12/13 Oklahoma 12-4 in five innings and topped Illinois-Chicago 5-1, Long Beach State 5-2 and host UNLV 3-1. Washington and Oklahoma both finished the tournament with 4-1 records but UW earned the tourney title after defeating Oklahoma head-to-head. The Huskies are now 11-3 all-time in season openers and 54-15 in season-opening multiple-team tournaments.
HUSKIES ON THE AIRWAVES: KKNW AM-1150, through rights-holder Pioneer Radio & Sports, will carry 10 Husky softball games during the regular season and will carry all postseason games. Longtime baseball play-by-play man Mike Brown returns for his ninth season behind the microphone, while John Cowley delivers color commentary for his sixth season with the Dawgs. All games will air live on KKNW, and are also available over the internet at www.gohuskies.com or www.newschannel1150.com.
UW PICKED SIXTH: Washington was selected to finish sixth in the league by the Pac-10 Conference softball coaches. Head Coach Heather Tarr, who begins her second season at the helm of the UW program, returns seven starters for the 2006 campaign, including five All-Pac-10 players. The Huskies finished sixth in the conference last season with a 10-11 record after four teams tied for first place with 13-8 records. UCLA (49 points) was picked to finish first, followed by Arizona (41), Stanford (37), California (27), Oregon State (26), UW (23), Arizona State (12) and Oregon (9).
ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The 16-player Washington roster includes nine returning letterwinners and seven returning starters. The 2006 team is comprised of two seniors, six juniors, four sophomores and five freshmen. Seven players hail from Washington, seven from California, one from Oregon and one from British Columbia.
HEAD COACH Heather Tarr: Heather Tarr, a former Washington player, embarks on her second season at the helm of the Husky Softball team. In her first year, Tarr led Washington to the Super Regional where the Huskies fell one game short of advancing to the program's eighth Women's College World Series. Seven Huskies earned All-Pac-10 honors, including Kristen Rivera, who was the Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. Three Washington players earned All-Pacific Region honors and three were named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team. The Huskies tallied 13 wins over top-25 opponents, including No. 1 Michigan, No. 3 California and No. 4 Stanford. Tarr has a 47-25 career record at Washington.
2005 RECAP: Washington took top-ranked and eventual national champion Michigan to a third-and-deciding game at the Super Regional in Ann Arbor, Mich., and lost an 11-2 game to just miss out on the program's eighth Women's College World Series. Michigan won the opening game 4-1 but Washington forced a tiebreaker with a 3-2 victory the next day. The Huskies finished the year with a 35-22 record and 10-11 mark in the Pac-10. Kristen Rivera earned her fourth All-America award and was the Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. Three Huskies received All-Pac-10 honors and three were named to the All-Pacific Region teams (Rivera- 1st, Sarah Hyatt & Dominique Lastrapes- 2nd).