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Softball: Year in Review

Jul 6, 2022

The Stanford Super Regional

  • Stanford hosted Oregon State in a NCAA Super Regional with a bid to the Women's College World Series on the line.
  • It was the sixth Super Regional appearance in program history and the first time the Cardinal has hosted a Super Regional since 2009.
  • The last time Stanford hosted postseason softball was the 2011 season for the regional round – also Stanford's most-recent Super Regional appearance.
  • According to D1Softball's Graham Hays, prior to this postseason, only two of the 128 super regionals since the NCAA moved to the format in 2005 have been between two unseeded teams. The Stanford Super Regional is one of two unseeded super regionals this season as Stanford-Oregon State is joined by Arizona-Mississippi State

Fun in Tuscaloosa

  • Stanford won the Tuscaloosa Regional in convincing fashion, going 3-1 – with two victories coming against host and sixth-seeded Alabama.
  • The Cardinal outscored opponents 15-5 on the weekend and shutout the Crimson Tide twice – the first time Alabama has been shutout in the regional round since 2004, and the first time the team has been shut out all season.
  • Saturday's victory against Alabama snapped a 44-game win streak in the regional round for the host team, and this is the first time Alabama has failed to qualify for the Super Regional round.
  • The last time Stanford advanced out of the regional round as an unseeded team was 2008 at the Amherst Regional.

This Defense is Legit

  • Stanford is allowed 2.18 runs per game and had a run-differential of +112 (245- 133) and ranked in the top 20 nationally in shutouts (4th, 21), ERA (13th, 1.99) and fielding percentage (16th, .976).
  • Stanford was one of six programs to rank in the top 20 in all three categories, and one of three Super Regional teams to rank in the top 20 of those three categories (Oklahoma, Oklahoma State)
  • The Cardinal allowed 10+ runs in a game only twice on the season (11- Utah, April 1; 10- at Arizona, May 12) and has limited opponents to under three runs in 38 games, going 35-3 in those games.
  • With Alana Vawter being a drop-ball pitcher and not registering a high number of strikeouts, Stanford's infielders have led the way.
  • Among teams in the top-20 in fielding percentage, Stanford's 534 assists leads the way. The next highest team is Florida State (second) with 477 assists. Emily Young (161), Sydney Steele (125) and Sydnee Huff (97) all ranked in the top 10 in the Pac-12 in assists.
  • Huff, had a fielding percentage of .985 this season. The closest Pac-12 defender (outside of Vawter) is Oregon's Rachel Cid, who had 46 assists and a .988 fielding percentage.
  • Stanford has turned 22 double plays this season – second in the Pac-12. Its the most double plays in a season as far as program records go back (2008).

Queens of Threes

  • Known for its speed and aggressiveness, Stanford again hit a plethora of triples in 2022.
  • Stanford's 24 triples this season led the Pac-12 and is nearly double and was third nationally, trailing Louisiana's (26) and Jackson State (26).
  • The Cardinal was one triple shy of matching the school record of 25 triples, achieved by the 2019 squad.
  • Sydnee Huff and Taylor Gindlesperger led the team with six triples this season. Ellee Eck and Kaitlyn Lim both have four, Emily Young had three and Chloe Doyle had one.

All-Conference Cardinal

  • Four players earned five All-Pac-12 honors for Stanford.
  • Alana Vawter earned first-team all- conference honors for the second straight season, while Taylor Gindlesperger landed on the second team – also for the second straight season.
  • Sydnee Huff earned the first Pac-12 honors of her career, landing on the third team and the all-defensive team.
  • Emily Young was named to the all-defensive team.

Ranked Opponents Beware

  • Stanford has picked up six wins over national seeds this seeds, including five against Super Regional hosts.
  • The Cardinal won nine games against teams which advanced to a Super Regional this season: Oklahoma State, Oregon State, UCLA, Arizona State, Arizona — winning multiple games against the last three schools.
  • Overall, the Cardinal has won nine games against Top-25 teams and 12 games against postseason programs. 

Aces in the Circle

  • Alana Vawter was dominant for the Cardinal in the circle for the second-consecutive season.
  • Her 25 victories leads the Pac-12 this season while she also has an ERA of 1.99, good for 56th nationally.
  • This is the second season Vawter has had 20+ wins, making her the first Cardinal pitcher to accomplish the feat since Teagan Gerhart (2010-12).
  • The junior ranks fourth nationally with 11 shutouts – also tied for sixth in school history.
  • Vawter ranks 33rd in the country in walks per seven innings (1.26) and 80th in strikeout-to-walk ratio (4.00).
  • Sophomore Regan Krause joined Vawter as a 1-2 punch for the Cardinal. Krause ranks 23rd nationally in ERA (1.66) and 64th in hits allowed per seven innings (5.04).
  • Krause also won a career-high 11 games.

A Successful Pac-12 Season

  • The Cardinal finished the season with a 39-22 record and an 11-13 record in Pac-12 play this season, finishing fourth in the Conference of Champions.
  • The fourth place finish is the best conference finish for Stanford since finishing fourth in 2013 with a 13-11 record in Pac-12 play.
  • The 39 overall wins and 11 conference wins are the most wins the Cardinal has had since the 2013 season (39-21, 13-11 Pac-12).
  •  Stanford picked up the series victory over Utah, No. 2/3 UCLA, No. 10/13 Arizona State and No. 25/RV Arizona during the Pac-12 season. 

Perfection (Nearly) in the Circle

  • At the DeMarini Invitational, Stanford's pitching staff had a historic outing. The trio of Regan Krause, Alana Vawter and Molly Millar each had a perfect game or no-hitter in three consecutive games.
  • Krause opened the weekend with a no-hitter – allowing only one walk in the fifth inning – against Mount St. Mary's. The following day, Vawter had a perfect game – the first by a Stanford pitcher since 2013 – in a 10-0 victory over Fresno State. Less than two hours later, Millar threw a no-hitter in six innings against Mount St. Mary's, striking out a career high 14 batters in the process.
  • It is the first time three separate pitchers have had a no-hitter in back-to-back-to-back games, and the first time any school has had three no-hitters in a row since Auburn accomplished the feat in 2014.
  • The last time Stanford had three consecutive no-hitters was Tegan Gerhart in 2010 (March 19-20). The ace had a perfect game followed by back-to-back no-hitters the following day.

Senior Class

The program is led by a seven-member senior class this season: Emily Young, Molly Millar, Hannah Matteson, Emily Schultz, Kate Cressey, Taylor Gindlesperger and Emily Klingaman. The group had gone 145-72 in their career on The Farm with two straight postseason appearances. Young, Schultz and Gindlesperger did not participate in Stanford's senior day this season and will be pursuing a fifth year.

We Got Next

The future for the Cardinal continues to look bright. Stanford signed the nation's 10th-ranked recruiting class in November, bolstering its 2023 roster with the additions of NiJaree Canady, Kyra Chan, Emily Jones, River Mahler and Allison Morikawa. All five rank in the Top 100 nationally, with Canady, Jones and Mahler ranking in the Top 10. Both Canady (Kansas) and Mahler (Washington) are ranked as their respective state's top softball player, according to MaxPreps.