UCF Softball Entertains Trio of Teams in Mid-Week Action

March 10, 2008

Orlando, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - The UCF softball team (15-12, 1-2 C-USA) plays host to a trio of teams in mid-week action at the UCF Softball Complex this week, facing Sam Houston State in a doubleheader on Tuesday at 1 p.m., before playing Liberty and No. 13 Baylor in back-to-back games Wednesday starting at 3 p.m.

Previewing Sam Houston State
The Bearkats enter Tuesday's doubleheader with a 10-11 record on the season, posting wins over teams such as North Texas, Temple, Northwestern State and Stephen F. Austin, while suffering losses to Texas A&M, Indiana, Syracuse and Fairfield.

After playing in the USF Under Armour Classic last weekend, Whitney Wilson leads Sam Houston State at the plate, posting 25 hits, eight doubles, 19 RBI and a .609 slugging percentage. The freshman is hitting .391 on the season and is one of only two Bearcats to start 18 games. Morgan Mikulin boasts a 2.06 ERA, allowing 19 earned runs in 64.2 innings pitched for Sam Houston State, while Brandi Crnkovic leads her team with 64 strikeouts and four shutouts on the season in the circle.

Tuesday marks the first meeting between the Knights and the Bearkats.

Previewing Liberty
The Flames travel to Orlando with a 2-10-1 overall record in 2008, registering wins over Kennesaw State and Presbyterian, while falling to teams such as NC State, East Carolina, Towson, Fordham and Stetson.

Liberty is led offensively by Beth Bennett and Cassie Hendrix. The duo has combined for 25 hits, eight runs and five RBI on the season and hold .353 and .333 batting averages, respectively. In the circle, Sarah Ellis has thrown the most innings for the Flames, allowing 24 earned runs in 44.1 innings pitched, while fanning 31 batters.

UCF is 1-0 when facing Liberty, registering a 3-1 win in the teams' only meeting in 2002 at the Rebel Games.

Previewing No. 13 Baylor
Following a 3-2 outing at the USF Under Armour Classic last weekend, the Lady Bears enter Wednesday's match-up with the Knights with a 16-5 record and a No. 13 ranking in the USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Poll. Baylor has posted wins over teams such as Syracuse, Oregon, Cal State Fullerton, San Diego State and Texas-San Antonio, while dropping contests with Purdue, Arizona, UCLA, Michigan State and Hofstra.

Kirsten Shortridge paces the Lady Bears' offense with a .446 batting average, 29 hits, 19 runs scored and 15 stolen bases. Jordan Daniels has also been making waves for Baylor, posting seven doubles, six home runs, 22 RBI and a .871 slugging percentage. Jenny Isham has seen the most action on the Lady Bears' pitching staff, securing a 9-1 record through 11 appearances and 48.0 innings pitched. The right-handed pitcher has tallied 32 strikeouts on the season and has allowed only 13 earned runs.

The Black and Gold is 0-1 when facing the Lady Bears, falling 1-0 in the teams' lone meeting in 2005 at the Speedline Tournament in Tampa, Fla.

UCF Player of the Week
Breanne Javier (Castaic, Calif.) concluded last week with a .500 batting average and three runs scored for the Knights. She posted a career-high four hits, a run and a walk in UCF's 15-inning game against East Carolina and followed that performance up with a 2-for-2 outing with a double, two runs scored, a RBI and a sacrifice hit in the Knights' win over the Pirates on Sunday afternoon. Javier has totaled 11 multiple-hit games this season alone and has had at least three hits in four contests. Her four hits against ECU on Saturday also tied the school record for hits in a game. Javier's 22 putouts in the contest were the most by an individual in a game in program history and matches the league record set in 2000 by Southern Miss' Kenya Peters.

She's Going the Distance
Senior hurler Allison Kime (Brandon, Fla.) pitched all 15 innings of the Knights' 6-2 loss to East Carolina Saturday afternoon, setting a new Conference USA record for innings pitched in a game. The most frames pitched prior to the 15-inning marathon were in 2000, when Southern Miss' Courtney Blades threw 13 innings against LSU. The game also tied the C-USA record for the most innings played overall all-time and all-time for a conference game, while Kime also captured the record for most innings pitched in a C-USA league game.

Offense and Defense in Perfect Harmony
After picking up a critical win over East Carolina on Sunday, Ashleigh Cole (Pace, Fla.) moved her record to 6-5 on the season and also improved her batting average as the starting pitching. When Cole is in the circle for the Knights, she is batting .500 with 11 hits, three doubles, a home run, six RBI and a .773 slugging percentage in seven games.

ARR, I'm Not Scared
When it comes to playing East Carolina, Lindsay Dean (Jacksonville, Fla.) has got the Pirates' number. The junior is batting .300 when facing C-USA foe, ECU, with five runs scored, four RBI, two doubles, a home run and a sacrifice hit. Dean's lone home run against the Pirates lifted the Knights to a win at last season's C-USA Championship and put her team into the semifinal game. In the three-game series last weekend, the catcher posted two hits in both contests she played, while knocking in three runs in UCF's 10-6 win on Sunday.

Season tickets for the 2008 season are still available and can be purchased by calling 407-UCF-1000. For the latest news and information on the Knights, tickets or apparel log on to www.ucfathletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. Also check out UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pics