Big West Hits The Road For Tournament Action
2018 Big West Softball Weekly Release No. 2
BIG WEST AT A GLANCE
MISFELDT MEANS BUSINESS
UC Riverside recorded two wins in the opening weekend of the 2018 campaitn and both victories came in shutout fashio with senior pitcher Tayler Misfeldt in the circle. With a 2-1 record thrugh her first three appearances on the year, Misfeldt has recorded a 2.63 ERA and 19 strikeouts. The 19 strikeouts rank third-best in the Big West.
RAINBOW WAHINE RETURN TO ACTION
Hawai‘i kicks off its 2018 campaign this weekend as the Rainbow Wahine make their season debut at the Marrucci Desert Classic. UH will take on BYU, Seattle, New Mexico, Utah State, Idaho State and Boise State.
HERNANDEZ HIT HAPPY
Long Beach State’s Naomi Hernandez dominated at the plate at the Puerta Vallarta College Challenge to open the 2018 campaign. The freshman was 12-19 and hit for a .632 average in her collegiate debut. Hernandez started all five games for the Beach and recorded multiple hits in all five games to help LBSU to a 4-1 mark.
UC SANTA BARBARA OFF TO FAST START
UC Santa Barbara went 4-1 at the Capital City Kick Off and is off to its best start since the 2013 squad opened the season at 5-0. The Gauchos return to action this weekend at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City.
FRESHMAN FIREPOWER IN UC DAVIS’ YANEZ
For the first time since 2013 when Justine Vela struck out 11 at Hawai‘i, an Aggie pitcher recorded 11 strikeouts in a single contest. Freshman Brooke Yanez tallied 11 strikeouts against South Dakota and added another 10 against the Aztecs in an extra-inning affair to close out the tournament. Yanez is also the first to post back-to-back double-digit strikeout outings since 2013.
TITANS TOP PRESEASON COACHES POLL
The Titans claimed four first place votes for 57 points as it earned the top spot in the preseason poll.
The defending Big West champion returns 17 while adding nine newcomers after a stellar 35-23 campaign with a 16-5 mark in league. Offensively, the squad returns two players who received Big West Honorable Mention recognition last season in sophomore Zoe Richard at first base (.280 BA, HR, 22 RBI) and senior shortstop Shianne Brannan (.283 BA, 5 HR, 23 RBI). Contributing to Fullerton’s league-best .973 fielding percentage in conference, Brannan recorded a .952 fielding percentage for 84 putouts and 95 assists. Richard was flawless defensively as she posted a 1.000 fielding percentage at first, recording 175 putouts. Fullerton also welcomes National Gatorade Player of the Year in freshman RHP Taylor Dockins. As back-to-back champs for the first time in over a decade, reigning Coach of the Year Kelly Ford and the Titans look to three-peat in 2018.
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