No. 1 And No. 2 Set To Clash As Huskies Host Arizona

April 8, 2010

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No. 1 Washington (30-3, 2-1) vs. No. 2 Arizona (32-4, 2-1)
Husky Softball Stadium - Seattle, Wash.

Friday, April 9 - 6 p.m.
• Live stats available via Gametracker and live webcast at

Saturday, April 10 - 4 p.m.
• Live stats available via Gametracker and live webcast at
• TV: UWTV (

Sunday, April 11 - 12 p.m.
• Live stats available via Gametracker and live webcast at
• TV: UWTV (

A battle between the top two teams in the nation will take place this weekend at Husky Softball Stadium when No. 1 Washington hosts No. 2 Arizona in a three-game series which could determine the Pac-10 Championship. The Huskies (30-3, 2-1) are fresh of a series victory over No. 5 UCLA last weekend in the conference opener while the Wildcats (32-4, 2-1) also won their opening series against in-state rival Arizona State. The weekend will feature two of the nation's top pitchers in senior Danielle Lawrie and freshman Kenzie Fowler of Arizona, who could take over the reigns from Lawrie after this season as college softball's best pitcher. The match-up also pits two of the better offenses in the country, with the Huskies averaging 6.64 runs per game and Arizona averaging 8.36 runs a contest. The series kicks off Friday with a 6 p.m. contest followed by the second game on Friday at 4 p.m. The final game of the series will take place Saturday at Noon.

While limited tickets are available for Friday night's game, Saturday and Sunday's games are already sold out, with only standing room tickets available for purchase at the stadium. Purchase your tickets for Friday night's game quickly before those sell out as well at

Saturday is Dads and Daughters Day at the ballpark with a postgame Q&A taking place after the game with Husky players and coaches. Additionally, face painter John Robert Powers will be on hand to decorate fans' faces with Husky logos and much more, and finally, KJR's Dave 'Softy' Mahler will be on hand to throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Sunday is Little League Day at the ballpark with the Husky Band also in attendance.

The Huskies' final two games this weekend can be seen live on UW's campus television station, UWTV, which is broadcasting eight Pac-10 games live this season. Former Huskies Angie Mentink and Dena Tyson will call the action for the games all year. The last two games of each Pac-10 series this year will be shown live on UWTV with the games also re-airing on a tape-delayed basis on both UWTV and Fox Sports Northwest. For more information, go to

Fans can follow the Husky softball team and receive updates throughout the season on the UW Softball Twitter page by logging on to Head coach Heather Tarr and National Player of the Year Danielle Lawrie have their own Twitter accounts as well and fans can follow them at and The Huskies can also be found on Facebook via the Washington Softball fan page at To become a fan of Danielle Lawrie, search Facebook for Danielle Lawrie.

With two wins last weekend, the Huskies are now just five wins shy of the 800th win in program history. The Husky program began in 1993 with a 31-27 record and since then, have made 16 consecutive NCAA postseason appearances, winning at least 40 games in 13 of those campaigns. The Huskies won a school-record 62 games in 2000 and won 51 in their national-championship winning season last year, the sixth 50-win season in program history. UW has already reached 30 wins this season, something the program has done every year of its existence. The Huskies have averaged 45 wins per season over the 17-year history of the program.

2010: 32-4, 2-1
2009: 46-17, 13-7 (Women's College World Series, 0-2)
Series vs. UW: Arizona leads, 56-19
About Arizona: The Wildcats are once again a serious threat to win their ninth National Championship. As always, they boast one of the country's most powerful offenses, scoring a nation-best 8.36 runs per game. UA is led by USA Softball Player of the Year candidate Brittany Lastrapes, who is one of the best hitters in the country, batting .443 with 12 home runs, 43 RBI and 41 runs scored. Freshman Brigette Del Ponte has added some serious pop, blasting a team-high 15 home runs and driving in 55 runs to lead the Pac-10. The Wildcats, who were thin on pitching last year, now also boast one of the top pitchers in the country in freshman phenom Kenzie Fowler. Rivaling Danielle Lawrie nearly stat for stat, Fowler is 21-2 with a 0.83 ERA and has struck out 192 batters in 134.2 innings pitched.
Series History: The Huskies won the season series with the Wildcats, 2-1, last year with Danielle Lawrie firing a no-hitter in Seattle at the nation's No. 1 ranked offense in the first meeting, the first pitcher to hold UA hitless since 2000. Lawrie beat the Wildcats again later in the season in Tucson before Arizona took the final game of the series. The first win snapped a six-game losing streak for the Huskies against UA. They have not swept a season series from the Wildcats since the conference shifted to three-game series in 2000.

The Huskies retained the No. 1 spot in both national polls this week, something they have done all nine weeks of the season since the preseason polls were released. While they are not the unanimous choice in either poll for the first time since the second week of the season, they still dominate the votes in both polls, earning 28 of 30 votes in the NFCA/USA Today poll and 24 of 25 in the Softball Top-25.

The Huskies started the season ranked No. 1 for the first time in school history, earning the top spot unanimously in the NFCA/USA Today poll while earning 17 of 20 first-place votes in the Softball poll. UW finished last season atop both polls after winning the Women's College World Series and they return six starters from that squad including National Player of the Year Danielle Lawrie. Six of the eight Pac-10 teams are in the nation's top 15 (Washington, Arizona, Arizona State, California, Stanford, UCLA) while Oregon has jumped into the rankings over the last month.

The Huskies won the season series with UCLA for the first time since 2007 when they took two-of-three from the Bruins at Husky Softball Stadium last weekend, bouncing back from a tough opening loss to win the final two games. In Thursday night's conference opener, UCLA handed Danielle Lawrie her first loss of the season, narrowly edging the Huskies, 1-0, as Donna Kerr limited UW to just four hits and the Bruins pushed across a run in the top of the sixth to escape with the win. The Huskies would respond, however, to take the final two games which were both completed on Saturday.

The Bruins took a 1-0 lead in game two on a home run by Samantha Camuso, but after the Huskies tied up the score in the bottom of the third and rain postponed the completion of the game to Saturday, UCLA would be shut down the rest of the way. Lawrie threw 9.1 scoreless innings over the final two games and the Huskies finally figured out Kerr, earning a 3-1 victory in the second game and breaking out for a 7-2 win in the finale. Freshman Shawna Wright had the game-winning RBI double in the 3-1 victory, then drove in three runs in the final game to continue her clutch hitting in her rookie campaign.

This week, the Top 25 Finalists for the 2010 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award were named and UW's Danielle Lawrie and Jenn Salling were both among the finalists. Lawrie is the reigning USA Softball Player of the Year while Salling was added to the list after not being among the top 50 players named prior to the season. She was a top-10 finalist as a freshman in 2007.

The two Huskies are among eight Pac-10 players named to the list and UW was one of five teams to have more than one player among the top-25. Lawrie has been a force at the plate and in the circle, leading the nation in shutouts (12) and ranking second in wins (20) and fewest walks per seven innings (0.69). She has a 20-1 record and 0.94 ERA while striking out 223 and walking just 14 in 141.1 innings. She is also leading the Huskies in home runs (11) and RBI (40). Salling, meanwhile, is having a big year in her first full season with the Huskies. She is batting .396 with six home runs, 27 RBI and nine stolen bases and has also played brilliantly at shortstop, making just three errors in 98 chances. Her 39 runs scored lead the team and rank eighth in the nation.

With her third Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week honor this week after going 2-1 against No. 5 UCLA, Danielle Lawrie racked up her 13th career conference honor, moving her into a tie for second all-time with California great Michelle Granger. Lawrie is now one weekly honor shy of tying Arizona's Alicia Hollowell for the all-time record of 14.

Lawrie is also chasing down both pitchers when it comes to the Pac-10 career strikeout record. With 28 strikeouts last weekend, she now has 1,588 career strikeouts to put her on the brink of the 1,600 mark. Just eight pitchers in NCAA Division I history and just four in Pac-10 history have reached the mark, including Granger and Hollowell. Lawrie is currently just 52 behind Granger for third in Pac-10 history and seventh in NCAA history. She is 82 behind Arizona State's Katie Burkhart for second and sixth, respectively, and 180 behind all-time conference leader Hollowell, who is fifth in NCAA history with 1,768 Ks.

The Huskies appear highly in national statistical rankings, most notably ranking ninth in fielding percentage (.975) and 11th in scoring average (6.64/game). The Huskies also come in at 15th in ERA (1.67), 16th in home runs per game (1.30) 17th in slugging percentage (.526) and 22nd in average (.317). Individually, Jenn Salling is ranked eighth in the country in runs per game (1.18) while she and Kimi Pohlman are tied for 15th in the country in triples (4). Freshman Shawna Wright also appears in the national statistics, ranking 14th in sacrifice flies (3).