UC Riverside and Hawai'i Set To Host Annual Tournaments
Big West Softball Weekly Release No. 3
UC Riverside and Hawai'i are set to host tournaments this week, the lone tourneys being hosted by Big West clubs this week. UCR is set for its homeopening Amy S. Harrison Classic, while UH returns to the islands to headline the Bank of Hawai'i Invitational.
BIG WEST AT A GLANCE
Playing Long Ball: 2013 was void of power for Cal Poly as the team clubbed only nine home runs in 55 games. So far in 2014, the Mustangs have seen an uptick in the power department with seven home runs in 10 games.
CAL STATE FULLERTON
Home Cookin: Cal State Fullerton owns a league-best 9-3 record, powered by a 7-0 showing at Anderson Family Field. The Titans will spend this weekend away from home at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City, Calif., before co-hosting the Mayfair Invitational with Long Beach State.
CAL STATE NORTHRIDGE
Elder In The Circle: Junior Brianna Elder has been the Matadors’ top pitcher so far in 2014. She’s pitched 30.2 innings, allowing a 2.74 ERA and striking out 25. She’s also posted three complete games in her five starts and has four of CSUN’s five wins on the season.
LONG BEACH STATE
Haven’t Seen Them In A While: Long Beach State is playing a slate of foes at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic that they haven’t seen much of. The 49ers have not played any of their upcoming foes on more than six occasions (LSU, Maryland, Oklahoma State, New Mexico, Syracuse) all-time. Additionally, the matchup against Maryland is the first between the teams.
Welp...See Ya Later: UC Davis is embarking on a road trip, a really long road trip. The Aggies will play in 17 straight road games before their next game in front of their fans at La Rue Field. Included in this block of games are four games at the Santa Clara Marriott Classic (hosted by Santa Clara), a road game at Sacramento State, another three games at the Stanford Louisville Slugger Classic (Stanford) before ending its road swing with another four tournament games at the Wolf Pack Classic (Nevada).
Dionne Gets On: Senior Dionne Anderson’s name is littered all over the Big West leaderboard. She is second in on base percentage (.559), third in batting (.444), eighth in slugging (.630), 10th in runs scored (7) and ninth in hits (12) to name a few.
UC SANTA BARBARA
Swiping The Sacks: UC Santa Barbara leads the Big West with 13 stolen bases thanks to two talented freshmen. Kristen Clark leads the team and Big West with seven steals, while classmate Stacy Cavazos is tied for third with her five steals.
No Need To Go Anywhere: Hawai‘i will be playing in paradise for the forseeable future as its next 15 games will be at Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium. UH won’t leave the islands until it plays a pair in Los Angeles on March 26 against UMKC and Loyola Marymount.
Jones-Wesley Maintains Record Pace: Right-handed pitcher Erin Jones-Wesley enters her senior season at Long Beach State with an opportunity to set a couple of school records as well as enter the Big West career top 10. The three-time All-Big West First Team selection has collected three consecutive 20-win seasons and has garnered a 66-32 record in the yellow and black. In addition to potentially becoming just the seventh player in conference history to capture first-team all-conference acclaim four times, Jones-Wesley is in line to break 49er career records for wins and strikeouts. Meredith Cervenka (2002-05) owns both marks with 78 wins and 634 strikeouts. Jones-Wesley is No. 3 in LBSU annals with 562 strikeouts. She needs just one win to break into the Big West all-time top 10 and join former 49er Brooke Turner (67) at No. 10 on the list.
Moreno Off To A Hot Start: Cal Poly senior center fielder Lauren Moreno is off to a hot start at the top of the lineup for the Mustangs. Moreno is hitting .333 with four home runs, nine runs scored and 21 total bases. She is also batting .647 in leadoff situations and has only struck out twice in 41 plate appearances.
Crazy Comeback: Hawai’i posted an incredible 13-12 come-from-behind victory against Portland State last week thanks to late inning magic. The Rainbow Wahine were down 11-1 going into the bottom of the fifth, then put across five runs to keep the game going. Down 12-6 going into the bottom of the sixth, UH scored six runs in the frame to tie things up, powered by a grand slam by Alyssa Villalpando. Sharla Kliebenstein then gave Hawai’i the win in the bottom of the seventh with a walk-off hit.
Holmes Knocking Them In: Long Beach State junior Ashley Holmes leads the Big West in RBI (14), batting average (.519) and is second multi-RBI games (4). She has two games of three RBI and has collected 11 in her last five games.
Two Titans Lead The Way Against UNC: Seniors Gabby Aragon and Ariel Tscuchiyama powered Cal State Fullerton to a win over North Carolina, with each hitting their first homers of the season. Aragon’s dinger was part of a three RBI day, while Tscuchiyama’s homer was part of her fourth multi-hit game of the season.
UCSB’s Three Baggers: UC Santa Barbara leads the Big West with seven triples on the season, with the rest of the league combined for 11 three-base hits. Freshman Kristen Clark has been the catalyst with her league-best three triples, the lone player in the league to have multiple triples so far this season.