April 27, 2012
Indiana is coming off a narrow 6-4 loss to No. 9 Louisville on Wednesday in the final non-conference game of the season. The Cardinals jumped out to a 4-0 lead but the Hoosiers rallied behind two-run home runs off the bats of Jenna Abraham and Amanda Wagner to tie the game at 4-4. But Louisville got a two-run home run in the fifth inning and held on for the win.
The home run by Wagner gives her 20 in her career, becoming just the 11th player in IU history to reach 20 home runs in a career.
As a team, IU has hit 31 home runs this season, the most by an IU team since hitting 32 in 2008.
Returning to Big Ten play this weekend in Iowa City, a place the Hoosiers have not won since 1995 (0-15).
BIG TEN'S BEST
Amanda Wagner was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday, the first time an IU player has received the award since Sara Olson did it on April 4, 2011. Wagner hit .800 against Northwestern with six runs socred and a .909 on-base percentage.
Brianna Meyer also brought home a weekly award, being named Freshman of the Week by the conference. She hit .556 versus the Wildcats and drove in five runs while scoring three runs herself.
YOUTH IN THE CIRCLE
In looking at the 62 softball teams in BCS conferences, there is just one (Pitt) that has fewer innings pitched returning from last year than Indiana. The Hoosiers had sophomore Meaghan Murphy's 5.0 innings of work last year coming back while Pitt has two freshman carrying all of the pitching duties this season. Among Big Ten, Indiana has the fewest innings returning with Purdue (48.0) being second.
The Hoosiers have scored a run in the first inning of 17 games this season and are 15-2 in those games. When they score the first run of the game - regardless of inning - they are 19-6.
Although Amanda Wagner continues to show opponents why she is a feared hitter in the middle of the lineup for IU. Her .373 average with nine home runs and 33 RBI speak for themselves, but she has drawn 31 walks to help her .526 on-base percentage.
In the win against Michigan on March 31, she had four RBI, including a three-run opposite field home run to put the game away. Then against Purdue, she hit .500 with two home runs, five RBI and a slugging percentage of 1.375. In the series at Penn State, she had just two hits but drove in five runs and drew eight walks. And most recently in conference action, she hit .800 off Northwestern pitching on her way to Big Ten Player of the Week accolades.
Dating back to the first game against Purdue, Wagner has been on base in 35 of 42 plate appearances, including 10 of 11 plate appearances last weekend against Northwestern.
She leads the team lead with nine home runs this season. The native of Burbank, Ill., has 20 career home runs and 72 career RBI as she plays her third season. She is the 11th player in IU history to club 20 or more home runs in a career.
LUCKY NUMBER SIX
When Indiana scores at least six runs in a game this season, they have posted a 14-1 record. When you compare that to last season, when the Hoosiers were 8-2 for the season when scoring six or more runs.
With a pitching staff that is gaining experience by the inning, the Hoosiers have not been fazed by close games so far this year. In games decided by two runs or fewer, the Hoosiers are 10-6. In games that IU has had the lead going into the 7th inning, the Hoosiers are 16-2.
DOUBLE THE FUN
Indiana has cranked 65 doubles this season, the third-most in the Big Ten and the most by an IU team since hitting 88 in 2004. Samantha Berenter leads the team with 12 doubles, the most by an IU player since Jennilee Huddleston had 15 in 2007.
WALK THIS WAY
The Hoosiers have been issued 133 walks this season, already the most since drawing 145 in 1996. That has helped Indiana to a .372 on-base percentage, which would be the team's highest since 1994 (.378).
ALL ABOUT ABRAHAM
Sophomore Jenna Abraham continues to impress at the plate this season, hitting .323 with seven home runs and 20 RBI - all of which are better than her freshman season when she garnered Third Team All-Big Ten accolades. She also leads the team with 32 runs scored, the most in a season by an IU player since Storym Hanson scored 24 in 2003.
In addition to her prowess at the plate, she also robbed a home run in left field against UIC in the seventh inning for the final out of the game - a home run that would have tied the game.
SHELBY TAKES ADVANTAGE
Shelby Gogreve has taken over the starting position at shortstop after Breanna Saucedo went down with a foot injury in the first game of Big Ten play at Ohio State on March 24. Since that time, Gogreve has hit .352 with 3 home runs, three doubles and 10 RBI.
In the three-game series at Penn State, she hit her first career home run, a solo shot to left field. Then last weekend versus Northwestern, she clubbed a pair of home runs and drove in six while hitting .500 for the weekend. She also laced a walk-off two-run double in the series finale to give IU a 11-3 win over the Wildcats in six innings.
Senior second baseman Samantha Berenter has been instrumental to the Hoosiers' offensive success this season and is having a career-year at the plate in the process. She is hitting .287 this season with five home runs and 27 RBI while also scoring 24 runs. In her first three seasons, she posted a .190 average and had 23 total RBI with 18 runs scored.
BRI'S ON FIRE
Freshman first baseman Bri Meyer enters this weeks game having reached base safely in 13 straight games, the longest active streak on the team. During the streak, she is hitting .368 with a home run, two doubles, eight runs scored, 10 walks and 11 RBI.
In the three-game series against Northwestern, she hit .556 with five RBI and had at least one RBI in each game, capped off with a three-hit, three RBI effort in the series finale.
BACK TO THE WINNING WAYS
With 23 wins this season and 37 victories last season on their way to the NCAA Tournament, it marks the first time since 1996 and 1997 that Indiana has won at least 23 games in back-to-back seasons. The Hoosiers won 27 games in 1997 and 37 in 1996.
CASSIE CATCHES FIRE
Fifth year senior catcher Cassie Gogreve is hitting .271 this season and has 10 doubles, two home runs and 27 RBI. At the Phyllis Rafter Memorial in Georgia, the South Pasadena, Calif., native hit her first home run of the season and drove in six runs, including a four RBI game against Saint Louis. Then last week at Ball State, she turned on a inside pitch and hit a two-run home run, her second long ball of the year. Additionally, she has played in all 148 over her three years.
HEY MAN, RIGHT IS RIGHT
Junior outfielder Samantha Heyman made one of the most difficult transitions a player can make - moving from the left side of the plate to the right side. And this year the results have been dramatically better, as she is hitting .225 with three doubles and a triple and seven RBI. In her first two seasons, she hit .179 with two doubles and eight RBI while batting from the left side. More importantly, as she bats predominately in the ninth spot in the order, she has seven sac bunts and one sac fly this season while she had just one last year.
In addition to that, Heyman has been outstanding in center field, registering 16 career outfield assists.
CAWLEY-ING THE SHOTS
Freshmen third baseman Shannon Cawley was inserted into the heart of the Indiana order in Georgia and showed that's right where she belonged. Against No. 10 Stanford, the senior smacked a solo home run off All-American pitcher Teagan Gerhart to tie the game and keep the momentum in Indiana's favor. She also hit a towering home run against Central Arkansas and finished the five games in Georgia with six RBI.
For the season, Cawley is hitting .322 with three home runs, eight doubles and 16 RBI, including four sac fly RBI which is tied for the eighth-most in the country.
"LO" AND BEHOLD
Freshman pitcher Lora Olson has been a part of the IU pitching staff from day one. She knew coming in that she would be relied upon to throw a number of innings this season for the young IU pitching staff. She has thrown 146.1 innings and has 13 wins to her credit, which is the most victories by an freshman pitcher for Indiana since Jessica Creith had 15 in 1997. She has two shutouts on her ledger this season as well - Eastern Kentucky and Indiana State.
In addition to that, she hit her first collegiate home run against Memphis - two-run shot that tied the game and allowed the Hoosiers to earn the comeback win in Las Vegas.
Olson is the third of three sisters to play softball at Indiana, joining Anna (2005-08) and Sara (2008-2011).
Meaghan Murphy is a sophomore because it's her second season in Bloomington, but it is basically her freshman year as a pitcher. She entered the year having pitched just 5.0 innings in one appearance in 2011. This season she has thrown 147.0 innings and has a 10-10 record after getting both wins last weekend in the series against Penn State.
In her 22 starts, she has gone the distance 13 times and also came in to get the save with three innings of work against Saint Louis.
The Golden, Colo., native hit .220 last year in 82 at-bats while playing right field and first base in 2011. She also had two home runs and 14 RBI.
Freshmen Lora Olson and Shannon Cawley showed their prowess at the plate in Las Vegas, connecting for their first collegiate home runs. Cawley did so with a solo home run to center field against BYU and Olson did it against Memphis, a two-run blast to tie the game in the fourth inning. Brianna Meyer got on the home run train against No. 20 Michigan, clubbing a solo home run, the first of her career, to right center in the Hoosiers 7-2 win over the Wolverines.