April 26, 2013
LAST WEEK'S RESULTS
April 17 vs. Pacific: L, 6-0
April 20 at UC Riverside: L, 8-5 (Gm. 1) and W, 3-1 (Gm. 2)
April 21 at UC Riverside: W, 1-0
THIS WEEK'S GAMES
Saturday, April 27 - Strike Out Cancer
Cal State Fullerton Titans (22-25, 7-8 BWC) at UC Davis Aggies (19-23, 6-9 BWC)
La Rue Field (Davis, Calif.) - 12/2 p.m. (DH)
Gametracker (Gm. 1) | Gametracker (Gm. 2)
Cal State Fullerton Titans at UC Davis Aggies
La Rue Field (Davis, Calif.) - 12 p.m.
Gametracker | Live Audio
La Rue Field (Davis, Calif.) - 2:30 p.m.
DAVIS, Calif. - The ninth-annual Strike Out Cancer fundraiser and awareness event on Saturday, April 27, is the first of a slew of special events that will take place throughout UC Davis' three-game, Big West series against Cal State Fullerton this weekend at La Rue Field. All donations received throughout the day will benefit the UC Davis Cancer Center.
Even though Cal State Fullerton leads the series 16-8, UC Davis won two of three last season in Fullerton to improve its record to 8-7 since joining the Big West Conference. The Aggies have also won three of the five conference series against the Titans.
UC Davis Athletics will honor the 1973 and 2003 softball teams, squads responsible for the first league and national championship in the program's history, in a pregame ceremony on Sunday, April 28, prior to the first pitch of the Aggies series finale versus the Titans.
Fans are encouraged to arrive at La Rue Field early to secure their seats for the "Celebration of Champions" pregame event.
This year's Aggie roster will compete against a squad composed of softball alumni in the 2013 Alumni Game following Sunday's series finale. First pitch for this exhibition game is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
IT'S OK TO STRIKEOUT TODAY
UC Davis' championship-celebration weekend will commence with the ninth-annual Strike Out Cancer, a fundraiser organized by UC Davis Softball to raise funds and awareness for the fight against cancer. Held in conjunction with the National Fastpitch Coaches Association's nationwide cancer-awareness campaign, Aggie softball will host this year's event on Saturday, April 27. All donations collected will benefit the UC Davis Cancer Center.
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS
On Sunday, April 28 versus Cal State Fullerton, UC Davis will recognize the 2003 Division II National Championship and 1973 Conference Championship teams during a pregame ceremony as part of softball's "Celebration of Champions" celebration. This is the 10th anniversary of the first-ever NCAA Division II Softball Championship and 40th anniversary of the first league championship for Aggie Softball. Fans are encouraged to secure their seats and arrive early to La Rue Field for that day's pregame ceremony honoring both teams.
The "Celebration of Champions" will conclude Sunday afternoon when this year's team faces a squad composed of former Aggies in the 2013 Alumni Game. First pitch is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
AGGIES SET NEW STOLEN BASE RECORD
Recording five stolen bases on April 21 in its season finale at UC Riverside, UC Davis set a new program record by swiping its 61st base of the season. Eclipsing the mark of 60 set by the 2003 team, this year's roster still has 10 games remaining to add to its total.
Entering the Aggies three-game series against Cal State Fullerton, junior Megan Guzman has 48 career stolen bases to her credit. Now ranked No. 2 all-time, Guzman needs seven more steals to take the top spot and surpass Belinda Paine's (2006-09) total of 54.
IT'S A HIT... SORT OF
UC Davis is ranked No. 2 in the Big West with 40 hit-by-pitches, trailing CSUN and its league-leading 48. Responsible for 15 of her team's 40, Kelly Schulze possesses the fourth-highest single-season hit-by-pitch total in the program's history. If she is plunked another eight times before the end of the season, Schulze will possess No. 1 spot in the Aggies' book of records.
BETTER LATE THAN NEVER
Due to inclement weather, the Stanford-UC Davis softball game originally slated for March 6, has been rescheduled to Wednesday, May 1, at 3 p.m.
I DON'T THINK SO
Justine Vela has frustrated opponents throughout the season, and deservedly so since she possesses the lowest opposing batting average in the Big West Conference at .184.
BACK, BACK, BACK... GONE!
Junior transfer Caitlin Voss has made the most of her opportunities at the plate recently, belting her first two home runs as an Aggie in consecutive games. After smacking her first homer against Pacific on April 10, the Santa Maria native provided the perfect ending for UC Davis in its first game at UC Santa Barbara, smacking a solo shot to force a mercy-rule ending in the Aggies' favor on April 13.
YOU HAD YOUR CHANCE
UC Davis earned its second run-rule victory of the season on April 13, the series opener at UC Santa Barbara, by recording an 8-0 triumph in five innings. For college softball, a mercy rule is invoked if one team is leading by eight runs or more after five full innings, or at the middle of the fourth if the home team is leading. At the Stanford Nike Invitational on Feb. 17, the Aggies also run-ruled Santa Clara by a 14-1 score.
A RBI MACHINE
Chandler Wagner is the first Aggie this season to earn four RBI in a game, an accomplishment that took place for the first time in her career in UC Davis' series opener at UC Santa Barbara on April 13.
PICK YOUR POISON
UC Davis is further strengthening its reputation as one of the toughest pitching staffs in the Big West Conference as the Aggies are ranked No. 2 in the league with a 2.39 ERA and .243 opposing batting average.
GO GO GADGET GLOVE
Entering this week's action, UC Davis possesses the third-highest fielding percentage in the Big West; its .966 percentage trails only Cal State Fullerton (.972) and UC Santa Barbara (.962). Aiding the Aggies' defensive efficiency is their errors total, 39, the second-fewest committed by any team in the conference and two more than the Titans with their league-low 37.
UC DAVIS AND THE NCAA
UC Davis softball possesses four top-100 rankings compared to all 289 Division I programs in the nation. Categories include (through games of April 21):
No. 46 in stolen bases (1.45/gm.)
No. 48 in Earned Run Average (2.39)
No. 57 in fielding percentage (.966)
No. 97 in triples (0.17/gm.)
AGGIES VS. THE NATION
In addition to their team rankings, five Aggies also possess national individual rankings (in alphabetical order, through games of April 21):
No. 73, Toughest to Strikeout (1K/17.4 AB)
No. 1 in Hit Batters (1)
No. 147 in Saves (1)
No. 17 in Hit by Pitch (0.37/gm.)
No. 19 in Hits Allowed (4.501/7 Inn.)
No. 24 in Shutouts (6)
No. 53 in Strikeouts/Seven Innings (7.9)
No. 69 in Strikeouts (155)
No. 92 in ERA (2.18)
No. 150 in Triples (2)
FIRST TO FIVE (INNINGS) WINS
Four innings of action has served as an accurate indicator for the eventual outcome of games the Aggies have played this season. UC Davis is 13-3 when leading after four innings, 0-16 when trailing, and 6-4 entering the fifth when tied.
BLINK AND YOU'LL MISS HER
Having already surpassed its total from last season, UC Davis has stolen 61 bases this year - the second-highest total in the Big West trailing only UC Riverside's league-leading 76. Led by Christa Castello with 13, 10 of the 11 players that regularly appear in the Aggies' starting lineup have swiped a bag. Cat Guidry leads all Aggie reserves with six steals.
REACH BASE BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY
Kelly Schulze is singlehandedly responsible for 15 of the Aggies' 40 hit-by-pitches, 40 percent of the team's total. Schulze leads the conference in this category and has been hit two more times than the Big West's No. 2 player, CSUN's Mikayla Thielges.
YOU WILL HAVE NOTHING AND LIKE IT
Jessica Thweatt earned her first shutout victory when she blanked Cal State Northridge in Gm. 2 of the Aggies' doubleheader on April 6. Her last shutout win took place on April 6, 2012, when her team captured an extra-inning 2-0 triumph against... Cal State Northridge.
WALK THIS WAY... JUST KIDDING, YOU WON'T
That's what happened to Cal State Northridge after its doubleheader on April 6 concluded when starting pitchers Justine Vela and Jessica Thweatt did not allow a walk throughout the entire day. This is the second time that Aggie pitchers did not allow a walk in consecutive games, although Saturday's feat was the first time this occurred in the same day. On March 16, at CSU Bakersfield, UC Davis did not allow a free pass to the Roadrunners; the same thing occurred the following game vs. Oregon State as the Beavers did not draw a walk when they faced the Aggies on Mar. 24.
MAKING THE MOST OF A FIRST IMPRESSION
Freshman shortstop Christa Castello helped UC Davis earn a sweep of its doubleheader against Cal State Northridge by driving in the winning run in the first game and earning another RBI in a Gm. 2 shutout. For the weekend, Castello finished with a team-high three RBI, five hits (nearly one-third of the Aggies' series total) and one of two extra-base hits.
HOME SWEET HOME
UC Davis has played eight home games this season, the fewest of any Big West school as every other team already has 10 or more home events to their credit. By comparison, Hawai'i leads the conference with 29 of its 45 games played at Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium. Of the Aggies' 10 remaining games, seven will take place at La Rue Field.
UC Davis will face Cal State Fullerton this weekend in a three-game weekend series, host Stanford in a game that was pushed back from its original date in March due to inclement weather before ending the season with another three home games against Cal Poly.
FIRST TIME IN A LONG TIME
In the Aggies Big West opener at Hawai'i on March 29, 10 innings were needed to declare a victor. That evening was the first time since May 8, 2008, that UC Davis participated in a 10-inning game. On that May day, the Aggies defeated Cal State Northridge in front of their home fans by a score of 3-2.
ANYONE, ANYTIME, ANYWHERE
When UC Davis took the diamond at Hawai'i, it was the seventh ranked opponent the team has faced this season. Other nationally-ranked opposition includes:
No. 9 California
No. 20 Stanford
No. 15 Michigan
No. 14 South Florida
No. 3 Arizona State
No. 24 Oregon State
VELA NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Recording both UC Davis victories against No. 14 South Florida (2/23) and Fordham (2/24) at the NFCA Leadoff Classic, Justine Vela was named Big West Pitcher of the Week as announced by the conference on Feb. 25.
The sophomore right-hander ended her weekend with a 2-0 record, 1.88 ERA and fanned 20 batters throughout her 18.2 innings pitched. Vela has now received weekly honors from the Big West Conference on four occasions throughout her time at UC Davis.
For her efforts throughout the three-day, six-game NFCA Leadoff Classic in Clearwater, Fla. (2/22-24), sophomore right-handed pitcher Justine Vela earned one of 12 spots on the All-Tournament Team.
Against South Florida, Vela struckout a season-high 12 batters and allowed only one extra-base hit to help the Aggies upset the No.14-ranked team in the nation by a 1-0 score. The following day, Vela helped UC Davis end its weekend in victorious fashion with a one-hit performance against Fordham to record her second complete-game shutout in as many appearances.
The Bakersfield, Calif., native also received a no decision in the Aggies' tournament opener versus Southern Illinois, and against No. 15 Michigan where she threw one inning in relief, gave up only one hit and struckout one Wolverine.
DOWN GOES ANOTHER RANKED TEAM
At the NFCA Classic, UC Davis defeated No. 17/14 South Florida 1-0 in what was a virtual home game for a Bulls team competing only 20-plus minutes from campus. The victory was the Aggies' first over a ranked opponent since their 2-1 victory versus No. 8 Stanford on Feb. 15, 2012.