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Pressure Mounts As Top Four Teams Square-Off

Files associated with this release:
13 BB Release - Week 14


• It’s showtime!  For the second straight week there is a conference battle between two ranked opponents. This week’s matchup pits the No. 24 UC Irvine Anteaters against the No. 4 Cal State Fullerton Titans at Goodwin Field Friday-Sunday.  The first two contests will be televised with ESPNU covering Friday night’s outing starting at 8:00 p.m. and FOX Sports West broadcasting Saturday’s 6:00 p.m. game.  Sunday’s matinee will not be aired.  The Titans currently sit atop the Big West standings with a 17-4 record while UC Irvine holds the third slot at 13-8.

• While the first and third place teams in the conference are battling at Fullerton, second-place Cal State Northridge (15-6) visits Cal Poly (12-9), who is tied for fourth with UC Santa Barbara.  With the end of the season approaching, both teams are looking to bounce back from series losses last week to make a push towards a potential postseason  berth.

• Last week fourth-ranked Cal State Fullerton surpassed the 40-win threshold for the 27th season and collected its 12th series win with a 2-1 mark at UC Riverside, bumping its road record to 23-4.  The Titans’ 23 road victories ranks second in the country with Canisius owning the top spot with 24 wins.

• After suffering a series loss to Cal State Fullerton (April 12-14), UC Santa Barbara, who is currently tied for fourth in the Big West standings, has earned four straight series victories over Long Beach State, UC Riverside, UC Irvine and Cal State Northridge.  The Gauchos play their final home series of the 2013 this weekend when they entertain Pacific.

• Pitching was top-notch in the UC Irvine-Cal Poly series last weekend.  Anteater Andrew Thurman tossed his second complete game of the season, holding the nationally-ranked Mustangs to one run on four hits in  the 7-1 victory. In UC Irvine’s final contest against Cal Poly, Andrew Morales improved to 10-0 on the mound after striking out a career-high 10 batters in seven innings. 

• Cal State Northridge notched a 4-1 upset victory over then-ranked No. 8 UCLA on Tuesday, May 7.  Thanks to sophomore Chester Pak blasting his first two home runs of his collegiate career on Sunday afternoon, the Matadors escaped a series sweep by UC Santa Barbara with a 7-1 victory to improve to 15-6 in league play.

• Big West.TV brings together live and on-demand video from each of the Big West’s member institutions.  Now in its eighth year, BigWest.TV covers Big West sports, press conferences, interviews and features, including every home and conference contest in women’s volleyball as well as men’s and women’s basketball.  Also covered are select contests in men’s and women’s soccer, baseball, softball and Big West Championships. Head to ‘thisweek’ for weekly event schedules.

This Week's Big West Matchups

Friday, May 17
Pacific at UC Santa Barbara* - 3 pm
Cal State Northridge at Cal Poly* - 6 pm
UC Riverside at Long Beach State*  - 6 pm
No. 24 UC Irvine at No. 4 Cal St. Fullerton* (ESPNU) - 8 pm
UC Davis at Hawai’i* - 9:30 pm

Saturday, May 18
Cal State Northridge at Cal Poly* - 1 pm
Pacific at UC Santa Barbara* - 2 pm
UC Riverside at Long Beach State* - 2 pm
No. 24 UC Irvine at No. 4 Cal St. Fullerton*(FOX Sports West) - 6 pm
UC Davis at Hawai’i* - 9:30 pm

Sunday, May 19
Cal State Northridge at Cal Poly* - 1 pm
Pacific at UC Santa Barbara* - 1 pm
No. 24 UC Irvine at No. 4 Cal State Fullerton* - 1 pm
UC Riverside at Long Beach State* - 1 pm
UC Davis at Hawai’i* - 4 pm