April 25, 2007
Kentucky Notes in PDF Format (04-25-07)
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Date: April 25, 2007
Series Record: UK, 7-4
Location: Lexington, Ky.
Facility: UK Softball Complex
Indiana will take on Kentucky in a doubleheader in Lexington on Wednesday, April 25, with game one starting at 4 p.m. The contests are the last non-conference games on the schedule this season for the Hoosiers, who have lost four straight. The Wildcats enter the double dip losers of seven consecutive games. Fans can follow the action live on Gametracker.
SCOUTING THE HOOSIERS
Indiana went 1-4 last week, topping in-state rival Evansville on Wednesday, April 18, 2-0, and being swept by Michigan State and Michigan on the weekend.
Against the Purple Aces, junior Tory Yamaguchi hit a two-run home run in the third inning and sophomore Monica Wright pitched a six-hitter as the Hoosiers earned their sixth shutout of the season.
Things did not go as well against the Spartans on Friday, as Michigan State put up 10 runs in a trice, winning 10-0 in five innings in a game that lasted just 1:12.
Indiana fared better the next day, rallying from a 4-0, first-inning deficit to make the game close. The Hoosiers picked up their first run of the day in the top of the third inning, when freshman Jennifer Glueckert was hit by a pitch and moved to third on a sacrifice and a groundout. She then scored on a wild pitch to get IU on the board.
The fourth inning saw Indiana plate a couple more, as senior Rachel Terry led off with her career-high sixth home run and sophomore Emily Bergeson came in on junior Julia Hamilton's RBI single. IU would be unable to tie the game, however, and MSU added three more runs for the final score of 7-3.
The weekend did not get any easier when No. 9/8 Michigan came to town for a Sunday doubleheader, and the Wolverines' potent offense lived up to its billing by scoring 9-0 and 11-0 victories in the doubleheader sweep. Both contests ended in five innings.
Jennilee Huddleston leads IU with a .357 batting average, a .414 on-base percentage, 14 doubles and 25 runs scored. Yamaguchi paces the squad with 12 home runs, 28 RBIs and a .636 slugging percentage. Hamilton leads IU with 16 stolen bases in 17 attempts.
In the circle, Wright is 13-16 with a 3.58 ERA. She has pitched a team-high 205 1/3 innings and has struck out 130.
The Wildcats (19-24) have lost a season-high seven games in a row, as they have been swept by No. 1 Tennessee and South Carolina in a pair of three-game SEC series following a loss at Louisville on April 11.
Against the Gamecocks last weekend, UK was in every game, but couldn't pull out a win. Kentucky dropped both games of a doubleheader on Saturday, April 21, falling 6-5 in game one and 2-1 in game two.
In game one, UK held leads of 2-1 and 5-3, but couldn't hang on for the win. Kentucky was held without a hit for the first four innings, but Molly Johnson's single up the middle in the fourth started a rally that saw UK score a pair of runs to take its first lead of the day. Brooke Marnitz' three-run home run in the top of the seventh inning put the Wildcats back on top after they fell behind 3-2, but South Carolina answered with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the frame to steal the walk-off win.
The Wildcats never led in game two, but tallied a run in the top of the sixth on Ashley Fertic's RBI single to cut the deficit to one. Five different UK batters had hits in the game, with three of them coming in the sixth inning.
The Wildcats would manage just three hits in a 2-0 loss to USC on Sunday, April 22, with Marnitz, Natalie Smith and Alli Eckman recording base knocks.
Marnitz leads the Kentucky offense with a .412 batting average and 55 RBIs, and with 20 home runs to her credit, leads the nation in home runs per game. Five UK regulars are hitting over .300 on the season.
In the circle, the Wildcats have three pitchers that have seen at least 80 innings of work, with Megan Jolly owning a team-best seven wins and Jennifer Young sporting a staff-low 3.78 ERA.
Kentucky leads the all-time series, 7-4, with the Hoosiers winning the first game, 13-2 in 1997. The Wildcats then won six straight from 2000-03, but IU has had the run of the series lately, taking three of the last four by splitting a doubleheader in 2004 and sweeping one in 2006.
The Hoosiers and Wildcats did battle in a doubleheader in Bloomington on April 12 of last season, with IU sweeping the twinbill.
Game one saw Indiana senior Mariangee Bogado toss her second career no-hitter as the Hoosiers picked up a 2-0 win. Bogado was perfect through 4 innings before an IU error gave the Wildcats their first baserunner to lead off the fifth inning, and she would hit Meghan Cooper with a pitch with one out in the seventh for UK's only other baserunner on the day. The Mariara, Venezuela, native struck out 12 and did not issue a walk. Bogado was the unquestioned star of game one, as she also provided the Hoosiers' offense with a two-run home run in the bottom of the third.
Game two was not without dramatics in its own right, but for vastly different reasons as Indiana won 6-5 in nine innings. Kentucky got on the board in the top of the first inning on Cooper's RBI single, but IU answered with two in the bottom half on back-to-back RBI doubles from Jennilee Huddleston and Lauren Hines to take the lead. The Wildcats would regain the lead in the top of the third, getting a bases-loaded walk before Megan Glenn was plunked with the bases loaded to force in another run.
IU would again rally, getting a Kim Richards sac fly in the bottom half to tie the game at three. Katie Campbell would put UK back on top with a two-run single in the fourth, but the Hoosiers again had the counter punch, as Richards hit a two-run bomb in the fifth to tie the game for the second time.
The Hoosiers got the win in the bottom of the ninth, as Huddleston came up with her second RBI double of the day to score Bogado. Bogado earned the win with 4 innings of hitless relief, giving her 11 innings of no-hit ball on the day.
This season's doubleheader bears a striking resemblance to last year's, as Indiana entered the doubleheader last season having lost five straight and fresh off sweeps at the hands of Michigan and Michigan State.
Indiana won nine straight games from March 10-17, its longest streak since winning 16 in a row in 1994. The school record for consecutive wins is 18, which IU set from March 23-April 12, 1983.
A model of consistency, junior Jennilee Huddleston has reached base in 34 of Indiana's last 36 games. She had an 11-game hitting streak during the span, and reached base in 21 consecutive contests before Iowa kept her off the basepaths on March 31. For the season, Huddleston has been on base in 41 of the Hoosiers' 47 contests.
YOU CAN CALL ME CAL
Junior Jennilee Huddleston has been in the starting lineup for every Indiana game this season, making her the only Hoosier player to start all 47 games. Huddleston has manned the hot corner for 46 of those contests, while earning one start at short. Huddleston started all 56 games at third last season, and started at short in 27 of the 28 games in which she appeared as a freshman in 2005. A starter from the beginning of her rookie season, Huddleston's 2005 campaign was cut short by injury. Overall, she has started 103 straight games, and 130 of her 131 career contests.
Junior Julia Hamilton matched the school record for stolen bases in a single game with three swipes against Quinnipiac at the USF Spring Break Tournament on March 13. Hamilton reached base five times in the contest, going 3-for-4 with a walk and reaching on an error. The Lincolnshire, Ill., native stole second in the first, fourth and sixth innings to equal a record she also matched as a freshman in 2005. Hamilton has stolen 16 bases this season in 17 opportunities.
CRUNCH TIME SUCCESS
Indiana batters have been impressive in the clutch, going 14-for-47 with the bases loaded, good for a .298 batting average. Sophomore Stephanie Pellerito owns the Hoosiers' only grand slam on the season, while classmate Emily Bergeson is hitting at an impressive .667 clip with four hits in six at-bats with the bases juiced. Junior Julia Hamilton has recorded hits in two of her three (.667) bases-loaded opportunities, while junior Tory Yamaguchi is 3-for-6 (.500) with the bags full. Senior Kim Richards has had the most opportunities with the bases loaded, as she has come to the plate in that situation nine times, recording two hits.
Junior Tory Yamaguchi hit her career-high 12th home run of the season on April 18, giving her 33 for her career, good for second on IU's all-time list. Only Monica Armendarez, who hit 38 from 1995-98, has hit more homers for IU than Yamaguchi. Yamaguchi is also moving up the single-season home run list, as her latest dinger moved her into a tie for third.
Senior Kim Richards sits eighth with 20 career home runs, just one back of Stormy Hanson (2000-03), while classmate Rachel Terry is ninth with 14 for her career. Junior Jennilee Huddleston is 11th with 10 career jacks.
Richards has also moved into the top 10 in career doubles this season, as she now has 35 to her credit to stand tied for eighth with Margaret Haenisch (1991-94). Aimee Lonigro (1994-97) is seventh with 37 doubles during her career.
With her swipe of second against Louisville on Wednesday, April 4, junior Julia Hamilton moved into sole possession of eighth place on IU's career steals list with 40. She now has 42 to her credit, and needs two more to match Kelli Brandt (1994-97) for seventh.
LUCKY NUMBER SIX?
The Hoosiers are 12-2 this season when scoring six or more runs, including a perfect 6-0 when scoring exactly six. Indiana's lone setbacks when scoring at least six runs came on March 8, when IU lost to No. 19 Georgia Tech, 16-8, and on April 8, when the Hoosiers dropped a 14-7 contest to No. 8 Northwestern. IU has scored 10 runs four times this season, winning each time by at least eight.
While Indiana has had success when the bats are hot, the same cannot be said when the offense isn't clicking. The Hoosiers are just 4-20 this season when scoring two or fewer runs, and have been shut out 10 times on the year. IU has picked up a pair of 1-0 wins on the season, a 2-1 victory over Illinois-Chicago on March 23 and a 2-0 win over Evansville on April 18 for its only four wins when tallying two or fewer runs.
HOOSIERS DIG THE LONGBALL
Indiana has hit 36 home runs in just 47 games this season, good for second on the Hoosiers' all-time single-season list. Five IU players have at least two home runs on the year, with junior Tory Yamaguchi leading the way with 12. Indiana is 15-10 this season when going deep, including an 8-1 mark when there are two IU home runs in the same contest.
TWICE IS NICE
Junior Jennilee Huddleston and senior Rachel Terry have etched their names into the IU record book this season, becoming the fifth and sixth players, respectively, to hit at least two home runs in the same game for Indiana. Huddleston hit a pair of home runs against Chattanooga on March 18, while Terry joined the elite club with two against Illinois on April 1. Only Monica Armendarez, Brooke Monroe, Michelle Venturella and Kim Richards had hit at least two home runs in the same game in an IU uniform prior to this season.
Juniors Jennilee Huddleston and Tory Yamaguchi have hit back-to-back home runs twice this season. The duo first turned the trick in the top of the fourth against Southern Illinois on Feb. 16, then went yard consecutively again against Chattanooga in the top of the seventh on March 18.
BRING ON THE SOUTHPAWS
The Hoosiers have fared well against left-handed pitching this season, hitting .374 (40-for-107) against southpaws as a team. Every IU player with at least four at-bats against a lefty has at least one hit on the season, and only three Indiana players total are without a hit against a left-hander. Junior Jennilee Huddleston has done the most damage, as she is 8-for-12 (.667) against lefties on the year. Junior Janetta Deaven and sophomore Emily Bergeson are both 4-for-7 (.571) against lefties, while Kari Bettenbrock is 3-for-4 (.750) against left-handed pitching.
STEPHANIES MAKING THE MOST
Sophomore Stephanie Pellerito hit a grand slam to propel Indiana to a 6-2 win over Ball State on March 4. Pellerito was playing just her second game of the season, getting the starting nod after an injury to Emily Bergeson the day before. In her very next at-bat, against Massachusetts on March 8, Pellerito went deep again, this time with a solo shot to lead off the third.
Freshman Stephanie Turner has also taken advantage of her limited playing time this season. Turner went 1-for-3 with a double in her first collegiate action, against Ball State on March 4, and hit a walk-off, pinch-hit home run in just her fifth career at bat, against Buffalo on March 16. Her two-run blast came in the bottom of the fifth inning, and put IU up 10-1 to put the mercy rule into effect. Turner got the call to pinch-hit again on April 1 in game one of a doubleheader with Illinois, and responded with an RBI double to spoil the Illini's shutout. Her clutch performance earned her the starting nod in game two, and Turner responded with a sacrifice fly and a walk.
INDIANA TAKES ON THE POLLS
The Hoosiers have eight teams on the 2007 schedule that have appeared in both major polls this season. 2007 IU opponents Georgia Tech, Louisville, LSU, Massachusetts, South Florida, Southern Illinois, Northwestern and Michigan have all been ranked in both the USA Today/NFCA and ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 polls at some point in the season.
HEATING UP IN FLORIDA
Junior Jennilee Huddleston heated up under the Florida sun during the Hoosiers' spring break trip, hitting .429 over the 17 games with 10 runs scored and 17 RBIs. Huddleston hit safely in 13 of the 17 contests, and reached base in all but one. As a team, Indiana hit .295 for the trip, raising its batting average 69 points in little more than a week.
Indiana returns to conference play for good, as it will take on Penn State (April 27-28) and Big Ten co-leader Ohio State (April 29) on the road this weekend. After that, the Hoosiers will take on Purdue to close the regular season, facing the Boilermakers in West Lafayette on May 5 and hosting PU on May 6.