UCSB Hosts San Diego for 2009 Home Opener

March 10, 2009

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• The Schedule
Games No. 23-24

at Campus Diamond (Santa Barbara, Calif.)

Wednesday, Mar. 11, 2009
UCSB vs. San Diego, 12 & 2 p.m.

• Countdown Till Campus Diamond Complete!
After playing 22 consecutive road games, the UC Santa Barbara softball team will make its first appearance on Campus Diamond this Wednesday when they host the University of San Diego for a doubleheader scheduled to start at noon. For tickets, call (805) 893-UCSB or click here.

• No Luck In Las Vegas
UCSB struggled last weekend at the UNLV Invite. The Gauchos dropped four straight games, falling to UNLV twice by way of 5-2 and 5-4 scores and also lost to Texas Tech, 8-6, and Notre Dame, 5-2. The four game losing skid marks the longest of the season.

• For The Record
UCSB currently holds an 11-11 overall record. Four of the Gauchos' losses have come to teams that were ranked at the time of the pairing or are now currently ranked in the NFCA/USA Today Top-25 Poll (Stanford, Washington, San Diego State and Ohio State).

• Offensive Behavior
UCSB currently leads the Big West Conference in several statistical categories. The Gauchos rank first in runs (102), hits (177), RBI (93), on-base percentage (.365) and stolen bases (27).

• The Wright Stuff
Senior Tiffany Wright led the Gauchos last weekend, batting .400 across the four games with three runs, two doubles, a triple, an RBI and one stolen base. She posted at least one hit in each game and had two hits in each of the games against UNLV. She is batting .295 on the season and is tied for first on the team with 15 runs and is second with 16 RBI.

• We're Going Streaking
Speaking of Tiffany Wright, the 2008 Big West Field Player of the Year is currently amidst a seven-game hitting streak, which includes four multiple-hit outings. In fact, she has had hits in 13 of the last 15 contests. Christine Ramos saw a 14-game hit streak come to an end against Notre Dame. The senior has had hits in all but three contests this season.

• More Than Meets The Eye
Junior MeLinda Matsumoto's record from last weekend is a little deceiving. The pitcher went 0-2, being credited with Friday's losses to UNLV and Texas Tech, but she posted a 0.91 ERA. Matsumoto made three appearances - pitching 9.1 innings - and gave up just one earned run. She allowed 12 hits and struck out seven, but unfortunately, seven unearned runs crossed the plate while she was in the circle.

• A To The Z
Freshman third baseman Amanda Ziegler had a solid weekend at the plate. She hit .357 across the four contests and tallied a run, a stolen base and four RBI. Against Texas Tech, she posted a season-high three hits while also scoring a run and tallying a RBI. For the season, she is batting .294 and is third on the team with 14 RBI and is tied second with three home runs.

• Ziegler Squared
Sisters Amanda Ziegler and Jessica Ziegler accounted for 10 of the Gauchos' 33 hits last weekend. This season they have collectively posted 49 of UCSB's 177 hits (28 %).

• Who Does No. 2 Work For?
Speaking of junior Jessica Ziegler, the first baseman is currently second on the team with her .358 average and 29 hits. The Gauchos' No. 2 batter posted a .333 average last weekend and matched her season high of three hits in the loss to Notre Dame. She has had at least one hit in 12 of the last 14 games. She also leads the squad with 156 putouts and has a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage.

• No Sophomore Slump Here
Sophomore infielder Jessica Beristianos currently leads UCSB with 17 RBI - which is also first in conference - and nine extra-base hits (five doubles, one triple and three home runs). She is batting .328 which is a vast improvement upon her .260 average from last season. Currently, she is just two runs, four doubles, one homer and six RBI away from tying her totals from 2008. She currently ranks fourth in the Big West in slugging percentage (.578), runs (15), walks (11) and total bases (37). She is also the conference's leading target, ranking first after being nailed by seven pitches.

• Ramos Record Watch
Two weeks ago, senior Christine Ramos broke the school record for career hits. Last weekend she continued to climb several other career top-10 lists. With her run in the second game against UNLV, she reached 100 career runs, making her just the fourth UCSB player to post triple digit runs in her career. While ranking fourth all-time for runs, she ranks third for stolen bases (45) and is on pace to set the career batting record with her .349 average.

• #10 In The Top-10
Senior center fielder Tiffany Wright is also climbing her way through the record books. She posted two doubles last weekend, which moved her into a tie for fourth on the UCSB all-time doubles list with 32. She has moved to seventh on the career hits list (167) and fifth for runs scored (97). She is third for RBI (102) and holds the school record for home runs (25), just two shy of making the Big West's career top-10 list.

• Pitching Points
As a staff, the Gauchos currently hold a 3.22 ERA, ranking fifth amongst Big West teams. Their ERA is an improvement upon last season's 3.82 ERA, which was the worst in the Big West. The Gauchos boast a staff of five pitchers that have each seen 17 or more innings already this season.

• In The Circle
Freshman Krista Cobb leads the pitching staff with her 2.98 ERA and 33 K's in 49.1 innings of work. She holds a 6-3 record on the season and ranks fifth in the Big West for wins. MeLinda Matsumoto is second on the team with her 3.02 ERA and 21 K's. Lindsey Correa, who has gone 2-0 this season, owns a 3.30 ERA and has posted a team-low .216 opponent's batting average.

• Big West Update
With just two weeks to go before Big West Conference games begin, six of the eight squads currently boast records of .500 or above. Cal Poly currently leads the league with a 14-6 mark while defending conference champ Long Beach State is 15-9 on the season.

• Scouting San Diego
San Diego enters this week's doubleheader with a 3-14 overall record and just came off of a pair of one-run losses to Miami (Ohio) at home on Sunday. Danielle Duhart leads the squad batting .286 on the season. Lindsey Fleet has posted a .265 average with a team-leading seven RBI. In the circle, Jennifer Ellenbeck leads the team with her 2.55 ERA in 60.1 innings of work. She has struck out 47 batters this season and holds a .238 opponent's batting average.

• Taking On The Toreros
UCSB leads the all-time series with San Diego, 8-2. The last time the two teams met was on Feb. 6, 2004 when the Gauchos captured a 4-3 win in eight innings.

• Preseason Predictions
In the 2009 Big West Coaches Preseason Poll, the Gauchos were picked to finish third - tied with Cal Poly - out of the conference's eight teams. UCSB picked up one first-place vote while Long Beach State received the other seven. Cal State Fullerton was picked to finish second. The poll, however, isn't always the best indicator of how a season will end up. In 2008, UCSB was picked seventh in the preseason poll before taking second in conference. The Gauchos will open their 2009 Big West schedule at home on Mar. 28 against UC Riverside.

• Poll Points
The Gauchos have received votes in the NFCA/USA Today Top-25 Poll twice this season. The Gauchos were listed among "others receiving votes" in the Feb. 10 and Feb. 23 polls.

• Season Tickets
For a chance to catch all of the Gauchos' games at Campus Diamond this season, the UCSB Athletics Department is, for the first-time, offering season tickets. Ticket prices are $50 for adults, $40 seniors (55 and over) and $24 youth (13 and under) and include all 16 home contests. With the purchase of a season ticket, you will also receive a free UCSB visor. Call (805) 893-UCSB or click here to purchase tickets.

• Softball Sidekicks
Youth teams are invited to Campus Diamond to be a part of the Softball Sidekicks program, hosted by UCSB. Teams can sign-up to participate in on-field activities, including taking the field with the Gauchos prior to the start of the game. Players and coaches can attend the game free of charge. Click here to sign up and for more information.