No. 2 Bruins Travel to Utah for Four-Game Series
NO. 2 BRUINS TRAVEL TO SALT LAKE CITY FOR FOUR-GAME SERIES
The second-ranked Bruins head to Salt Lake City this weekend for a four-game series at Utah. Game one will be Friday at 4 p.m. PT, Saturday's doubleheader will commence at 1 p.m. PT and Sunday's series finale will start at 11 a.m. PT. All four games will be live streamed, with links available on the softball schedule page at UCLABruins.com.
The Bruins host Stanford next weekend in their final regular-season series at Easton Stadium. Game one will be Friday, May 7 at 7 p.m., the Saturday, May 8 twinbill will begin at 2 p.m. and the Sunday, May 9 contest will start at 2 p.m. All four games will be televised by Pac-12 Network, and will also have a free audio stream at UCLABruins.com.
2021 PAC-12 CONFERENCE SERIES FORMAT
This season, Pac-12 Conference series' will consist of four games over three days, single games on the first and last days and a doubleheader on the second day. Three of the four contests (both single games and the first game of the doubleheader) will count towards the Pac-12 standings, with the other game designated as a non-conference contest. In the event one of the four games is canceled due to weather or COVID concerns, the other three games played will be used for conference standings.
UCLA OUTDOOR HOME SPORTING EVENTS TO OPEN TO TEAM GUESTS BEGINNING APRIL 16
In compliance with state and county public health guidance, UCLA outdoor home sporting events will be open to a limited number of team guests, beginning April 16.
Seating at these events will be limited in order to comply with updated state public health guidance for higher education and college athletics that has been adopted by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, as well as city, county and campus COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
Tickets will not be available to the general public, and non-ticketed guests should not come to the competition venues. The UCLA campus remains closed to the general public.
UCLA will communicate with student-athletes and coaches regarding the process and protocols for their family members and guests to attend these outdoor home sporting events.
Per current state guidelines, attendance will be limited, and all spectators must be California residents. Seating will be confined to blocks of four or fewer seats with members of a single household. All spectators will be required to show proof of in-state residency. Spectators will be required to adhere to all physical distancing guidelines, sit only in their assigned seats, and wear face coverings at all times, except when actively eating or drinking.
RACHEL GARCIA NAMED PAC-12 PITCHER OF THE WEEK
For the second week in a row, the third time this season and the 14th time in her career, senior Rachel Garcia was named Pac-12 Conference Pitcher of the Week, as announced on Monday.
Garcia tossed a complete-game, three-hitter in last Friday's series-opening win against No. 3 Washington, allowing an unearned run and a walk while striking out six. She fanned four more in 1 2/3 innings of relief on Saturday, giving up four hits and a run. Garcia also went 2-for-5 (.400) at the plate with a home run and two runs batted in.
Garcia leads the Bruins with a 0.52 earned run average, posting an 8-0 record and 88 strikeouts in 53 2/3 innings. She is second nationally in ERA, ninth in strikeout-to-walk ratio (8.00) and 11th in hits allowed per seven innings (3.39). Garcia has completed five of her six starts, has three solo shutouts and has been a part of four other blankings.
It is the third week in a row Garcia has been honored by the Pac-12 after earning Player of the Week accolades on April 12 following the Oregon series and Pitcher of the Week honors last week after throwing a no-hitter against Oregon State. She was also conference Pitcher of the Week on March 23 after the Arizona State series. Along with her 14 Pitcher of the Week awards, she has three Player of the Week plaudits. Maya Brady also received honors on March 23 when she was named Pac-12 Player and Freshman of the Week.
FARAIMO, GARCIA NAMED FINALISTS FOR USA SOFTBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Senior Rachel Garcia and sophomore Megan Faraimo were named two of 25 finalists for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award, as announced on April 23.
The USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award, which is considered the most prestigious honor in Division I women's collegiate softball, recognizes the outstanding athletic achievement by Division I female players across the country.
Garcia has won each of the last two POY awards handed out in 2018 and 2019. In addition, Bruin alum Stacey Nuveman was the first recipient in 2002.
Garcia is one of 13 seniors or graduate seniors among the Top 25 finalists, while Faraimo is the lone sophomore. UCLA is tied with Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Washington with two finalists each.
The list of 25 finalists will be narrowed to 10 on May 5 before the Top 3 are announced on May 19. The 2021 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year will be revealed prior to the Women's College World Series.
GARCIA, NICKLES NAMED FINALISTS FOR SENIOR CLASS AWARD
Rachel Garcia and Bubba Nickles are two of the 10 finalists for the 2021 Senior CLASS Award®, as announced on April 23.
Fans can vote for Garcia and Nickles for the Senior CLASS Award® here through May 24. Fan votes will be combined with those of the media and Division I head coaches to determine the winner.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
The finalists were chosen by a selection committee from the list of 30 candidates announced earlier this season. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2021 Women's College World Series® in June.
BRUINS IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS (THROUGH 4/27)
Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio (1st, 6.84)
Earned Run Average (3rd, 1.27)
Winning Percentage (4th, .903)
Slugging Percentage (7th, .601)
Batting Average (12th, .333)
On Base Percentage (12th, .416)
Shutouts (T-14th, 13)
Runs Per Game (15th, 6.87)
Fielding Percentage (25th, .974)
Home Runs (T-31st, 48)
Doubles (T-35th, 37)
Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio (1st, 15.62)
Walks Allowed Per Seven Innings (5th, 0.65)
Hits Allowed Per Seven Innings (23rd, 3.92)
Earned Run Average (38th, 1.39)
Earned Run Average (2nd, 0.52)
Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio (9th, 8.00)
Hits Allowed Per Seven Innings (10th, 3.39)
Bubba Nickles/Delanie Wisz
Sacrifice Flies (T-40th, 3)
SCOUTING THE UTAH UTES
Utah swept Idaho State on Wednesday in a doubleheader to improve to 19-23 on the season. In Pac-12 play, the Utes are 2-13, winning games against Arizona State on April 2 and California on April 10. Utah is hitting .281 as a team with 43 home runs and 55 stolen bases, averaging 4.83 runs per game. Sophomore Haley Denning leads the team with a .389 batting average and 28 stolen bases, while junior Ellessa Bonstrom is first with 14 home runs and 35 runs batted in. Junior Sydney Sandez is 10-7 with a 4.26 earned run average and 43 strikeouts in 93 2/3 innings, while freshman Mariah Lopez is 4-10 with a 5.03 ERA and 53 strikeouts in 72 1/3 innings.
THE SERIES: UCLA VS. UTAH
The Bruins lead the all-time series with Utah 36-6, having won seven in a row, including a 6-5 victory in Tempe on March 1. Briana Perez had three hits and two RBI, Bubba Nickles homered and Megan Faraimo struck out six in 3 1/3 innings of hitless relief. In conference series', UCLA swept Utah at home in 2019 and in Salt Lake City in 2018. The Bruins are 8-2 all-time in Salt Lake City, winning five in a row.