April 11, 2001
UCLA's Pac-10 homestand will continue this weekend as the Washington Huskies travel to Easton Stadium for single games on Friday and Saturday. Both games are scheduled for 2 pm first pitches. In the teams' last meeting, the Bruins defeated Washington, 3-2, at the Women's College World Series in a game that was delayed overnight due to a lightning storm in the Oklahoma City area. UCLA leads the all-time series with UW by a 24-12 margin as the teams split the season series 2-2 in 2000. Washington won two of the three Pac-10 contests, while the Bruins prevailed at the WCWS.
Bruins Score 20 Runs in Doubleheader Sweep of Northridge
The Bruins took their game on the road last Wednesday, traveling to Cal State Northridge for a non-conference doubleheader against the Matadors. UCLA won the first game, 8-0, and game two by a 12-1 margin. In the opener, Tairia Mims and Marcel Torres both posted home runs, while Mims and Lupe Brambila each contributed a double to the Bruins 13 hits in the game. In the circle, Amanda Freed struck out nine and walked one during her six innings. Courtney Dale pitched the seventh, allowing one hit.
Game two was similar, with UCLA's 16 hits in six innings including doubles by Freed, Mims, Stacey Nuveman, Torres and Monique Mejia. Extra-base hits were also posted by shortstop Natasha Watley with her fourth triple of the season, and Freed with her second home run. Freed's homer led off the game, and was the first leadoff home run by a Bruin since Christie Ambrosi (vs. Oregon State, 5/2/99). In six innings in the circle, freshman Keira Goerl allowed just two hits, striking out four and walking one.
Arizona Schools Take Two of Three from Bruins
The Bruins started their first home Pac-10 series with two disappointing losses, a 6-1 defeat at the hands of Arizona State on Friday and a 4-0 loss to Arizona on Saturday. Fortunately, the Bruins rebounded on Sunday, with Dale's bases-loaded two-RBI double in the bottom of the fifth inning to defeat the second-ranked Wildcats by a 3-0 margin.
The start of Saturday's game, which was televised live on FOX Sports Net, was delayed by one hour due to heavy overnight rain in the Los Angeles area. UCLA's grounds crew used 65 bags -- nearly two tons -- of Turface during a three-hour stretch on Saturday to make the infield playable.
Bruin Softball Notches 16th 40-win Season, Holds Top Win %
With Sunday's 3-0 win over No. 2 Arizona, the Bruins now have a season record of 40-3. Last year, UCLA did record win No. 40 until its 52nd contest, an 8-0 win over Canisius in the Bruins NCAA Regional opener. This is the 16th 40-win season in UCLA history. UCLA's 40-3 record converts to a winning percentage of .930, which is the best winning percentage in the nation through games of April 8.
Individually, six Bruins rank in the current NCAA Statistical Leaders: batting average (19. Nuveman, .432, 20. Sua, .430, 31. Mims, .407, 39. Watley, .400), RBI (4. Mims, 1.26/gm, 7. Nuveman, 1.14/gm), home runs (15. Mims, 0.28/gm, 24. Nuveman, 0.26/gm), stolen bases (4. Watley, 0.81/gm) and ERA (6. Freed, 0.54, 38. Goerl, 0.94).
She's Baaack!: Nuveman Moves Up NCAA Career Lists
With 11 home runs this season, Bruin slugger Stacey Nuveman currently has 62 career home runs, moving her into fourth place on the NCAA's all-time list. Nuveman now has the best career home run total of any non-Arizona player. Jenny Dalton is next on the list with 76 career home runs (see page 5 of notes).
Through 43 games, Nuveman has walked 45 times, equivalent to 29% of her total plate appearances and a 1.05 per-game average that contributes to an impressive .592 on-base percentage. Nuveman is third among active players on the NCAA's career walks list, and has become the second Bruin in history to record more than 200 career RBI, with 211 . She is the active leader on the NCAA career list in that category.
Nuveman returns to the Bruins in 2001 after missing the 2000 collegiate season in order to play for the U.S. Olympic Team. Despite the fact that she is in her fifth year as a Bruin, Nuveman has remaining collegiate eligibility for the 2001 and 2002 seasons, and is considered an athletic junior in 2001.
Four Bruin starters currently own season batting averages of .400 or above: Nuveman (.432), freshman Claire Sua (.430) and sophomores Tairia Mims (.407) and Natasha Watley (.400). The Bruins have scored 295 runs while allowing just 45. The Bruins are hitting .356 as a team, and UCLA's offensive power is evident in the team pitching stats, as UCLA has a team ERA of 0.79 while the Bruins have hit their opponents into a 6.03 team ERA.
Freed Continues Domination in the Circle
Junior P/OF Amanda Freed spent her summer as a traveling alternate with the U.S. Olympic Team, and has returned to the Bruins as the same dominant pitcher who tossed UCLA to last year's NCAA Championship Game. Freed leads the Bruins with 116.0 innings in the circle and an 16-3 record with one save. She has struck out 118 and walked 15, good for a impressive K:BB ratio of 7.9:1! The Bruins have allowed just nine earned runs with Freed in the circle for a 0.54 ERA. Offensively, Freed is hitting .325 with two home runs, eight doubles and three triples with 24 RBI. She has stolen 14 bases on 15 tries.
Head Coach Sue Enquist
The 2001 season marks Sue Enquist's 13th campaign as head coach of the Bruin softball program. It is her 22nd year as part of UCLA's softball coaching staff and her 26th year of involvement with the program as either a coach or player. Enquist has a 619-118-1 (.839) coaching record and 1,046 wins in her Bruin softball career as a player, assistant coach and head coach, combined. As a player from 1975-78, Enquist became UCLA's first All-American while establishing the Bruin career batting average record of .401. She is still the only UCLA player to complete her career with a batting average over .400.
Elementary, My Dear Watley!
Even the masterful detective Sherlock Holmes wouldn't be able to stop Bruin sophomore All-American shortstop Natasha Watley, who became the most prolific base stealer in UCLA history after just one season. Watley's record-setting freshman campaign included team highs of a .426 batting average and stealing 32 bases on 37 attempts. In addition to setting a new Bruin single-season record for stolen bases and taking over the UCLA career lead in that category, Watley set an NCAA Division I postseason record with four steals against Canisius in UCLA's postseason opener on May 18, 2000.
Watley has already improved on that freshman campaign, swiping 35 bases on 39 tries for 67 career steals. Through 26 games, she had already improved on her freshman year total of 11 RBI and is closing in on her 2000 total for runs scored. Watley currently has 29 RBI and 51 runs scored, compared to 48 runs last year, and is riding a 22-game hit streak.
Forget Waldo, Where's Tairia?
Sophomore Tairia Mims is on the field and producing impressive offensive numbers from the No. 3 spot in the lineup, but you never know where you'll find her on the field defensively.
Mims has started all 43 games for UCLA: 13 games in right field, four games at first base, 16 at third base and 10 games behind the plate. UCLA's starting first baseman a year ago, Mims was a catcher and third baseman in high school and ASA ball. Since coming to UCLA, she has learned first base and right field, making her one of Sue Enquist's most versatile athletes defensively.
Mims was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week for Feb. 12-18 after hitting six home runs with 19 RBI during that stretch. For the 2001 season, Mims currently has a .407 average with 12 doubles, three triples, 12 home runs, 54 RBI, 38 runs scored and 12 walks, for a .471 on-base percentage and a .793 slugging percentage. In comparison, she totalled nine home runs, 32 RBI and eight doubles last year as a freshman.
Claire Sua has started all of UCLA's 43 games and is second on the team with a .430 batting average. She has six home runs -- including two grand slams -- 38 RBI and 18 runs scored. Sua entered the lineup as the designated player in UCLA's first five games (at the Early Bird Classic) before making her defensive debut at first base in the doubleheader at Cal State Fullerton on Feb. 7.
Pitcher Keira Goerl has pitched in 14 of UCLA's games and has a 0.94 ERA with 76 strikeouts in 97 innings pitched. Goerl pitched a five-inning perfect game against UC Riverside on March 6. Batters are hitting .158 against Goerl, and she is 15-0 on the 2001 season. She is second on the team in innings pitched to Amanda Freed (116 IP).
Freshman outfielder Stephanie Ramos started UCLA's first 29 games before breaking a the fourth metacarpal bone in her left hand. She was hitting .405 with seven doubles, 12 RBI and 22 runs scored, and had 18 putouts and an assist when the injury occurred. She returned to the Bruin starting lineup on Friday against Arizona State.
Five of Marcel Torres' eight game starts have come in Pac-10 play, with two more in last week's doubleheader at Cal State Northridge. Torres earned a single in her first collegiate at-bat, entering the game as a pinch hitter in the bottom of the seventh inning in the first game of the Cal State Fullerton doubleheader. Torres hit her first career home run on Feb. 16 against Portland State, and is hitting .441 with 19 games played, one double and two home runs.
Baserunning specialists Amanda Simpson and Julie Hoshizaki both see regular game action, with Simpson stealing two bases with 13 runs scored. She has appeared as a pinch runner in 39 of UCLA's 43 games. Hoshizaki has pinch-run in 29 games with 11 runs scored.
Sophomore Toria Auelua tore her right meniscus while warming up Courtney Dale in game one of UCLA's doubleheader at Southwest Texas State on Feb. 26. Auelua underwent surgery on February 28 and will be out for at least 6-8 weeks. Junior Casey Hiraiwa tore a tendon in her left hand during UCLA's Alumnae game on March 24, and had surgery on April 6. No timetable has been set for her return.