Broncos To Take On PCSC Leader Loyola Marymount

Broncos To Take On PCSC Leader Loyola Marymount

April 22, 2010

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara women's softball team will head to Los Angeles this weekend to take on the Pacific Coast Softball Conference Coastal Division Leader Loyola Marymount in two doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday. First pitch for both doubleheaders will be at 10 a.m., a departure from the normal conference noon start time, in order to avoid conflicts with a baseball game at LMU.

The Broncos are 8-22 overall and are still searching for their first conference `W'.

Sophomore Kristin Welsh has been the most consistent Bronco at the plate for the hitting .325. Her classmate Briana Knight is batting .287 and has by far the most appearances in the batters box (101) and is tied with three other players for the most runs scored (13). Knight leads the team in hits (29), doubles (4), home runs (6), RBIs (17), and slugging percentage (.505) and is coming off a performance against Cal State Bakersfield in which she hit back-to-back home runs. Senior Emily Batt has the highest on-base percentage (.419) and junior Amanda Edmonson has slugged three doubles and team-leading two triples.

LMU is one of two teams in the Coastal Division of the PCSC to have an overall winning record at 19-17 and leads the Coastal Division with a 6-2 mark. The Lions swept CSU Bakersfield in the opening weekend of PCSC play and split with Saint Mary's last weekend. LMU has four batters hitting over .300, led by Sam Fischer who has started every game, is hitting .377 and tops the team in nearly every category, including at-bats (106), runs (26), hits (40), doubles (9), home runs (12), RBIs (28), slugging percentage (.802), walks (16) on-base percentage (.468). Fischer has also committed only one error for a .993 fielding percentage. Pitcher Melissa Dykema leads the four-woman staff with an ERA of 3.45 and 11 wins in 24 appearances.

Three Santa Clara players have been recognized by the PCSC as Players of the Week for their outstanding contributions on the field. Senior Megan Smith was the first, earning Coastal Division Player of the Week honors on March 9. Smith helped the Broncos to a 2-1 record at the CSUN Matador Classic by going 3-for-6 at the plate with one home run, two RBIs and three runs scored. Then on March 17, Welsh earned POTW accolades when she went a combined 5-for-8 with six RBIs and two home runs in a weekend in which Santa Clara defeated Princeton once, 8-6, in a doubleheader and Cal State Fullerton, 14-9. Senior pitcher Kaitlyn Rauschnot garnered division pitcher of the week honors on March 30 when she didn't allow an earned run in 17.1 innings pitched spanning over three appearances. Rauschnot earned a 2-1 record on that weekend, allowing three unearned runs on just 14 hits and two walks and getting complete-game victories over UC Santa Barbara and Pacific. Her win over the Tigers was also a shutout in which she allowed only five hits and one walk while striking out three.

Portland State and Seattle are tied for the Mountain Division lead (as of Wednesday, April 21) with six wins and two losses. Seattle currently has the best streak in the division, having won four straight games. The winner of the Coastal and Mountain Divisions will meet at the conclusion of the regular season in a series that determines who will earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Following this weekend's games at LMU, the Broncos will host their final four home games of the year at West Valley College against Saint Mary's. The four seniors, Emily Batt, Nicole Picard, Megan Smith, and Kaitlyn Rauschnot, will be honored during Sunday's games.