Cal's NCAA Regional Game Delayed Until 11:30 a.m., PT
May 16, 2009
Game Information - Tallahassee, Florida Regional (JoAnne Graf Field)
Friday, May 15th (All Times Pacific)
Game 1 -- No. 14/16 California 8, Mississippi State 3
Game 2 -- Oklahoma State 1, at No. 16/20 Florida State 0
Saturday, May 16th (All Times Pacific)
Game 3 (11:30 a.m., PT) -- No. 14/16 California vs. Oklahoma State
Game 4 -- No. 16/20 Florida State vs. Mississippi State
Game 5 -- Game 4 Winner vs. Game 3 Loser
Sunday, May 17th (All Times Pacific)
Game 6 (10:00 a.m., PT) -- Game 3 Winner vs. Game 5 Winner
Game 7 -- Game 3 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner (if necessary)
News & Notes
The No. 14/16 California Golden Bears started the 2009 NCAA Tournament with an 8-3 win over Mississippi State on Friday. Cal fell behind, 3-0, after an inning and a half before storming back with eight unanswered runs. Sanoe Kekahuna (2-2, 2 HR, 2 RBI) blasted a pair of solo home runs for the Bears, while Elia Reed also went deep with a solo shot. Jamia Reid was 4-for-4 with a triple, stolen base and two runs scored. Marissa Drewrey tossed a complete game to earn the victory, scattering 10 hits and blanking the Bulldogs over the final five frames. The victory moved the second-seeded team in the Tallahassee Regional into Saturday’s winners bracket contest versus Oklahoma State at 10 a.m., PT. The winner of the Cal-Oklahoma State game will move on to the Regional Championship Game on Sunday (10 a.m., PT). The winner of the Tallahassee Regional will advance to a Super Regional (best of three head-to-head series) against the winner of the Gainesville Regional featuring Florida, Florida A&M, Lehigh, and Texas A&M. The Bears and Florida Gators met last year in the Super Regional with Florida sweeping Cal with a pair of 4-2 victories.
Cal is currently making its 24th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament, which is the second longest streak in the nation. Since the Super Regional format was adopted in 2005, the Bears have advanced to a Super Regional three of the four years and won their Super Regional to advance to the WCWS in 2005.
This is the second time that Cal has travelled to Tallahassee to play in a Regional. In 2001, the Bears won their first two games to move on to a Regionals finals appearance against host Florida State. After falling 2-1 in their first game against the Seminoles, the Bears outlasted FSU 3-2 in a 10-inning marathon to advance to the WCWS in Oklahoma City.
More recently, the two teams faced each other in the first round of the 2007 postseason at the Tuscaloosa, Alabama Regional. The Bears beat the Seminoles 13-6 in the game, with Cal scoring 10 runs in the top of the third inning. Pitcher Marissa Drewrey, in her first career post season appearance, worked 1.2 scoreless innings of relief, allowing two hits, walking one, while striking out three.
The Bears are 6-1 against Florida State in the postseason and 2-0 against Mississippi State after Friday’s win. They have never faced today’s opponent Oklahoma State in the tournament.
The Bears improved to 55-31 in regional games and 76-53 overall in the NCAA Tournament with Friday’s win.
Jamia Reid is swinging the hot bat for Cal. Reid is batting .524 in the month of May with an .857 slugging percentage. Reid has also had the blazing green light on the basepaths with 11 stolen bases in her last seven games.
Drewrey has also found her groove. She has appeared in each of the Bears’ last nine games (dating back to 4/25 against Oregon). Over that span, Drewrey is 5-0 with a 1.15 ERA, four complete games and two shutouts. In those 36.2 innings of work, she has struck out 30 batters with opponents hitting just .197 off Drewrey.
Record Breaking Season
The 2009 California Golden Bears own two school records. The Bears have shattered a season stolen base record that had stood for 30 years. In 1979, the team stole 104 bases. The 2005 team flirted with the record, coming up a four shy (100 stolen bases). Shannon Thomas stole the 105th base of the season on March 27 in the Bears’ home game against Washington and the Bears have since run their total to 142.
Jamia Reid set the individual single-season stolen base mark when she stole her 29th base of the season on March 25 at Pacific and has 46 after her stolen base in Friday’s game versus Mississippi State. She passed the previous record of 28 that was jointly shared by Keri Kropke (1992) and 2009 Bears’ volunteer assistant coach Erika Racklin, who stole 28 last season while playing for Cal. Shannon Thomas also passed the 28-steal mark this year and has the second-highest single-season total in program history, currently at 30. Elia Reid is also on the verge of passing the previous record with a current total of 26.
The Bears also have set the new standard for home runs in a season. Valerie Arioto set the record when she hit a lead off home run in the May 2 game against Arizona State, the 50th blast of the season for Cal. The 2007 team set the previous record of 49. There have only been three Cal teams to belt more than 40 home runs as a team in a single season, with the 2005 squad finishing with 46. The Bears enter today’s contest with 55 home runs on the season after hitting three out of the park in Friday’s NCAA opener versus Mississippi State. Bears batters have homered in five of the last seven games.
Freshman outfielder Jamia Reid has stolen 11 bases in the last seven games and had been successful in 27 consecutive stolen base attempts before being thrown out on her second at second base for the first time this season (third caught stealing total) versus Mississippi State on Friday.
Cal ranks fourth in the nation in steals per game (2.63) and the team’s 142 stolen bases (161 attempts) leads the Pac-10.
The Bears had a school record nine thefts against George Washington on February 14 and have recorded five or more stolen bases in a single game 12 times this season.
The Bears base runners have stolen at least one base in 13 of their last 14 games.
Freshman Jamia Reid had an unofficial school record four steals against Providence (3/7). Her twin sister Elia tied Jamia’s output with four steals of her own against Hawaii (3/12). Valerie Arioto challenged the record, trying for her fourth steal of the game at UC Davis (4/29), but was thrown out at second. It was the first time this season Arioto was caught stealing and ended a streak of 15 straight stolen bases for Arioto.
The Bears pitching tandem of Valerie Arioto and Marissa Drewrey have combined to strike out 10 or more batters in a game 10 times this season. The staff has also been responsible for five one-hitters in games. versus Penn State (2/15), Santa Clara (2/18), Mississippi (2/20), Saint Mary’s (4/15) and Oregon (4/26). The Bears are third in the Pac-10 in strikeouts with 392. The Bears’ pitchers have doled out 110 more strikeouts than their opposition’s 280.
Drewrey had not allowed a run in her last three regular season appearances. before giving up three (two earned) in the NCAA Regional opener versus Mississippi State (5/15).
Valerie Arioto leads the Pac-10 in fielding percentage. With 159 putouts and 63 assists between the circle and first base, Arioto has zero errors this season for a perfect 1.000.
The Battle for the Batting Titles
Valerie Arioto and Jamia Reid are battling for the Bears season batting title. Reid, who is 9-for-13 in her last four games, has taken the team lead with a .360 batting average.
Arioto is batting .340 to rank second on the club, while she also has a team-leading 38 walks and .472 on-base percentage (No. 8 Pac-10). Arioto also led the team in walks last season, drawing 48 free passes and posted a .444 OBP.
Sanoe Kekahuna took over the team lead in homers (11) after going deep twice in Friday’s NCAA Regional opener, while Arioto is second on the club wtih nine.
The tight team RBI race is presently being led by Arioto (36), with Gina Leomiti right on her heels (35) and Kekahuna (30) close behind. Arioto also has five doubles and a triple, and is slugging a team-high .582.
Marissa Drewrey won her 20th game of the season with her four-innings of relief at UC Davis (4/29). Drewery has since improved to 22-10 on the season and has now recorded back-to-back 20 win seasons. She has a career mark of 62-37.
Drewrey struck out her 200th batter of the season April 26th against Oregon, giving her back-to-back seasons with over 200 K’s. She has 599 career strikeouts. This season, her 227 rank her third in the Pac-10.
Sanoe Kekahuna owned Cal’s longest hitting streak of the season at nine games (3/12-25). Valerie Arioto challenged with an eight-game streak (4/10-25). Arioto had a streak of 12 games reaching base safely (4/10-5/3). She made it to first base every game in the month of April but one. Jamia Reid has the longest active streak of four games (5/7-present) and has gotten a hit in seven of her last eight games.
Valerie Arioto was named to the All-Pac-10 First Team. Arioto, who doubles as a pitcher and a first baseman for the Bears, is hitting .340 with 10 home runs and 34 RBI. She is 14-8 with a 2.45 ERA and 165 strikeouts in 151.1 innings in the circle this season. This is the first First-Team honor for Arioto, who was a second team honoree last season as a freshman along with teammates Sanoe Kekahuna and Gina Leomiti. Arioto is the first Bear to be named to the First Team since Kristina Thorson and Haley Woods both earned First Team honors in 2006. Freshman Jamia Reid, the Pac-10 stolen base leader, earned second team honors. Honorable mentions for this year’s squad were Marissa Drewrey, Gina Leomiti, Vernae Sevilla, and Shannon Thomas.
Valerie Arioto also earned All-Region honors as a UTL/Pitcher. This is the first time that Arioto earned All-Region First Team honors. She was named to the second team in 2008 alongside Marissa Drewrey.
Pac-10 Player of the Week
Taylor 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 and has six on the year.
California is ranked fourth in the country in stolen bases per game (2.63) and 22nd in home runs per game (1.02). Jamia Reid has moved up to third in stolen bases per game (0.87), with Shannon Thomas ranked 23rd (0.57) and Elia Reid 27th (0.54). Valerie Arioto is 27th in walks, drawing 0.70 per game as a batter. Marissa Drewrey’s nine shutouts ranks her 24th among all DI pitchers.
Cal ended the conference schedule in fifth place in the Pac-10 standings, equalling last season’s finish. Their 10 Pac-10 wins are the most for the team since 2006. It is the 14th time the team has logged double-digit victories in Pac-10 play.
Cal will finish the season with its 36th consecutive winning record. The Bears have not had a losing record in softball since 1973. They come into today’s game with an all-time program record of 1354-671-3 (.668).