April 24, 2012

Senior Weekend for Bronco Softball, Join Us for the Post-Game BBQ Sunday

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara University and the Bronco softball program will be honoring a pair of outstanding student-athletes and four-year letterwinners this weekend when the team hosts CSU Bakersfield on Saturday and Sunday, April 28-29 at West Valley College in Saratoga, Calif.  … pictured (l-r) seniors Briana Knight and Kristin Welsh.

THIS WEEK
Saturday-Sunday, April 28-29 – West Valley College (Saratoga, Calif.)

SAT - CSU Bakersfield @ Santa Clara 12 noon
SAT - CSU Bakersfield @ Santa Clara 2 p.m.
SUN - CSU Bakersfield @ Santa Clara 12 noon
SUN - CSU Bakersfield @ Santa Clara 2 p.m.
Live Stats

SCU SOFTBALL 'SENIOR DAY' BBQ!

WHEN: Sunday, April 29
Immediately Following Game Two of DH with CSU Bakersfield (approx. 4 p.m.)
WHERE: West Valley College Softball Field
14000 Fruitvale Avenue, Saratoga, CA 95070
DETAILS: Honoring SCU's 2012 Senior Class: Briana Knight and Kristin Welsh
Fans, Friends and SCU Alumni are invited to attend!

SANTA CLARA

The Broncos (9-40; 3-13 PCSC) seem to be on the verge of breaking out and winning a PCSC series, having split with LMU earlier this year on the road and nearly splitting last weekend's set with St. Mary's. SCU would like nothing more than to end the season on a high note and give OF Briana Knight (.245 BA) and INF Kristin Welsh (.128 BA) a proper send off. Knight leads the team in HR (8), RBI (29) and total bases (67). Knight has been an All-PCSC honoree in each of her three collegiate seasons thus far and Welsh has returned to the lineup despite battling injuries over the past two years. Welsh was the team's top hitter in 2010, hitting .322.

CSU BAKERSFIELD
The Roadrunners (11-37; 4-12 PCSC) have lost 11 of 12 to slip in the conference standings heading into the final weekend of league play.  The 'Runners have a new coach this season, UCLA alumna Crissy Buck, who had been an assistant coach at Oregon State for the past nine years. CSUB turned Div. I in 2007, so Buck is trying to build up a program that had extended success at the Div. II level prior to the transition. CSUB was 17-35 last season and 5-15 in the PCSC, which included a split of the four-game series with Santa Clara April 9-10, 2011 in Bakersfield.

THE OFFENSE
The Broncos generated 24 hits in their four-game set with St. Mary's last week, including four homers and four doubles. 1B Kelly Scribner (.243 BA) went 6 for 12 with two homers, four runs and four RBI – hitting an eventual game-winning drive in the sixth inning of Game One. OF Stephanie Fisher (.328 BA) continued her outstanding sophomore campaign by going 5 for 11 against SMC. Fisher and junior SS Alyssa Jepsen (.350 BA) have been the team's most consistent hitters in terms of average this season. Jepsen is batting .407 in PCSC play while Fisher owns a .341 clip through 16 league games. Freshman C Breezy Bernard (.276 BA) is also enjoying a nice stretch at the plate as of late, posting a .326 BA in PCSC play. OF Briana Knight (.245 BA) continues to be the team's top run-producer with 29 RBI.

THE PITCHING

Junior transfer and San Jose native RH Carissa Theis (4-10; 5.55 ERA) was one of New Mexico State's top pitchers the past two years, prior to coming to Santa Clara this offseason. Theis threw a complete-game four-hitter Saturday against SMC and picked up her fourth win. Theis and sophomore RH Jessica Turner (2-12; 6.04 ERA) worked 25 of the 26 innings last weekend against the Gaels.

QUOTABLE
"(The ball) looks really big right now," said Kelly Scribner, following her four-hit, two-homerun performance Saturday against SMC. "I'm glad, especially after having a tough time with it last weekend, I wanted to come out and have a really good weekend."

INSTANT ACCESS
For the very latest on Santa Clara softball, follow the team's official Twitter page (@SCUSoftball) and the Bronco softball Facebook page for updates and information throughout the year.

FUTURE LOOKS PROMISING FOR BRIANA RIOS AND BRONCO SOFTBALL

For Briana Rios and the Santa Clara University softball team adversity is no stranger. The Broncos have been in many precarious spots this season, and often times they called on Rios to come in and shut the door. The future looks bright for the Broncos and this young freshman, and they look to close out this season on a high note. Rios was recently able to connect with SantaClaraBroncos.com about her season and her future with the Broncos. Read more.

IMMEDIATE IMPACT: FRESHMAN CATCHER BREEZY BERNARD

Freshman Breezy Bernard has made an immediate impact for the Santa Clara University women's softball team, starting at catcher in her first collegiate season. In the midst of a grueling 56 game schedule, SantaClaraBroncos.com caught up with the backstop about the team's stunning comeback against LMU, her work with the pitching staff and the plethora of young talent on the roster. Read more.

ALYSSA JEPSEN GIVES FANS AN INSIDE LOOK AT SCU SOFTBALL 
It's always an adjustment for transfers to be successful in their first year at a new university. But Alyssa Jepsen, last season a National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Junior College All-American shortstop and pitcher at the College of San Mateo, has immediately become Santa Clara's leadoff hitter and everyday shortstop. She recently took the time to give us an inside look at SCU Softball. Read more.

PCSC STANDINGS (April 22)
Coastal Division
St. Mary's (11-4) 22-21
San Diego (11-5) 24-17
LMU (10-6) 32-17
Sacramento State (8-7) 25-17
CSU Bakersfield (4-12) 11-37
Santa Clara (3-13) 9-40

Mountain Division
Portland State (11-5) 21-21
Weber State (10-6) 21-26
Seattle (8-8) 15-24
Utah Valley (8-8) 27-19-1
Northern Colorado (6-10) 21-27
Idaho State (5-11) 9-33

BRONCOS ADD TO 2013 RECRUITING CLASS, SIGN CIARA GONZALES
Santa Clara University and head softball coach Lisa Mize have received a signed National Letter of Intent from Ciara Gonzales (Chandler, Ariz./Mountain Pointe High School), an all-league pitcher and infielder from the Phoenix, Ariz. area. Gonzales will attend the University beginning in the fall of 2012 and play for the Broncos in 2013. Read more.

PCSC SHIFTS TO SEVEN TEAMS NEXT YEAR
Brigham Young University has accepted an invitation to join the Pacific Coast Softball Conference in 2013. The addition of BYU will give the PCSC seven teams for the 2013 campaign as the Big Sky Conference will begin sponsoring softball in 2013, meaning the PCSC's Big Sky core-members of Idaho State, Northern Colorado, Portland State, Sacramento State and Weber State will leave the PCSC after this season. Seattle University will also be leaving the PCSC for the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) following the 2012 campaign.

While the West Coast Conference (WCC) does not sponsor softball, the Cougars will be among five WCC schools in the soon-to-be seven-team PCSC in 2013. BYU will play the 2012 season in the WAC before joining fellow WCC members Santa Clara, Loyola Marymount, San Diego and Saint Mary's in the PCSC .

PCSC alignment for 2013
Santa Clara, LMU, BYU, St. Mary's, San Diego, Cal State Bakersfield, Utah Valley

Support Santa Clara University Athletics by making your tax deductible donation to the Bronco Bench Foundation. For more information follow this link or call 408-554-5577. For additional involvement opportunities with Santa Clara Athletics, click here.