The Bruins have their Pac-12 bye week and will play just once, traveling to Cal State Fullerton for a 6 p.m. game Thursday, April 10. Audio and live stats will be available at UCLABruins.com.
BRUINS IN THE POLLS
The Bruins are first in the ESPN.com/USA Softball rankings for the third straight week and tops in the USA Today/NFCA poll for the second consecutive week. UCLA earned 16 of 20 first-place votes in the USA Softball poll, the same number as last week, and 493 points, three more than last week. In the NFCA rankings, the Bruins received 31 of 32 first-place votes, eight more than last week, and 799 points, 16 more than last week. UCLA has gained points in both polls every week. The Bruins were ranked fourth in the Pac-12 preseason coaches poll, receiving 42 points.
BRUINS CONTINUE HOT START
With a 33-2 record, the Bruins are off to their best start since the 2001 season when they began the year 39-2. It is the sixth time in program history that UCLA has won at least 33 games with just two losses to start a season. In 1992, the Bruins won the NCAA Championship with a 54-2 record. In 1999 en route to a National Championship, UCLA began the season with a 50-2 mark. The Bruins have also had a 39-2 start in 2001, a 37-2 record in 1991 and a 36-2 mark in 1995. UCLA’s 17-0 start to the season marked the eighth time in program history the Bruins won at least 15 games to open a campaign. The last time was in 2004 when UCLA recorded wins in its first 25 and went on to win the National Championship.
WE’RE GOING STREAKING ... PART 1
Along with bringing the team’s six-game winning streak into this weekend’s series, a few individuals are also carrying impressive streaks into the Oregon set. Sophomore Brittany Moeai ended the weekend with hits in seven straight at-bats, posting a career-high four on Saturday and three on Sunday versus Utah. The school record for consecutive hits is 10 by Lisa Fernandez (1993) and Stacey Nuveman (1999). Two others, Natasha Watley (2000) and GiOnna DiSalvatore (2010), have recorded hits in nine straight at-bats, while six others have done it in eight consecutive.
WE’RE GOING STREAKING ... PART 2
Junior Ally Carda enters the weekend with a career-best, 12-game hitting streak in which she is batting .371 (13-for-35) with three home runs, eight runs batted in, eight runs scored and four doubles. Carda has also reached base in 23 straight contests. Last season, she set a school record by reaching base in 38 consecutive games. Fellow junior Stephany LaRosa has reached base in 17 straight contests.
When she started in right field on March 29 against Utah, junior Ally Carda started her sixth different position for the Bruins this season. Carda has made 18 starts in the circle, five at both first base and center field and four at both left field and designated player. Four other Bruins have started three different positions, senior Jessica Hall (18 at DP, 12 at P, 9 at 1B), junior Stephany LaRosa (12 at C, 10 at 1B, 5 at DP), sophomore Brittany Moeai (23 at C, 8 at 1B and 3 at DP) and freshman Gabrielle Maurice (16 in CF, 3 in LF and 1 in RF).
PUNCHING UNTIL THE END
The Bruins have five (non-mercy rule) walk-off victories this season, the last of which coming in dramatic fashion again rival Arizona on March 16. UCLA relinquished a 3-1 lead in the top of the seventh, but scored five times in its half of the seventh on a solo homer by sophomore Mysha Sataraka and a game-winning grand slam from junior Gracie Goulder to finish off an 8-4 victory over the sixth-ranked Wildcats. Four of the five Bruin walk-offs have come against ranked foes, with two of them coming from freshman Delaney Spaulding, who hit an eighth-inning, three-run walk-off homer against #4 Michigan on March 4 and posted a walk-off single versus #13 Oklahoma on Feb. 21. Sophomore Mysha Sataraka recorded a two-run double against #16 Missouri on Feb. 22, while senior Jessica Hall had a walk-off single in the eighth inning versus Robert Morris on Feb. 14.
BRUINS IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
As a team, the Bruins enter the week with the second-best earned run average in the nation at 0.91. Offensively, UCLA is seventh in slugging (.543), tied for 14th in home runs (40) and 20th in batting average (.325). Individually, junior Ally Carda is third in the country in wins (19), tied for fourth in shutouts (8) and sixth in ERA (0.79). Senior Jessica Hall is ninth in ERA at 0.92, freshman Delaney Spaulding is tied for 12th in walks (29) and tied for 16th in on base percentage (.552) and sophomore Mysha Sataraka is tied for 26th with 10 home runs. The full list of Bruins in the national rankings is on page two of this release.
BRUINS IN THE PAC-12 RANKINGS
The Bruins enter the week leading all Pac-12 teams in earned run average (0.91), opposing batting average (.177) and saves (4), also ranking second in strikeouts (255) and third in fielding percentage (.970). Offensively, UCLA is first in on base percentage (.450) and hit by pitches (26), also ranking second in walks (166) and sacrifice hits (26) and third in slugging (.543), home runs (40) and stolen bases (40). Junior Ally Carda is tops in the conference in ERA (0.79) and wins (19), followed closely in ERA by senior Jessica Hall, who is second at 0.91. Freshman Delaney Spaulding is first in on base percentage (.552) and stolen bases (15), while sophomore Mysha Sataraka is tied for third with 10 home runs. The full list of Bruins in the Pac-12 rankings is on page five of this release.
THE MATCHUP: BRUINS VS. DUCKS
The Bruins lead the all-time series 73-18, but the Ducks have taken 2-of-3 in each of the last three Pac-12 matchups. Last season (April 26-28) at Easton Stadium, Oregon won game one (9-6), UCLA took the middle contest (7-5) and the Ducks claimed the series finale (7-5). In the most recent matchup in Eugene (May 10-12, 2012), UCLA won 10-0 in six innings in the opener, but the Ducks posted 3-2 and 8-2 wins to take the series. UCLA is 35-9 all-time in Eugene.
NEWS AND NOTES
The Bruins have stolen 44 bases this season, already six more than last year’s 38. UCLA has attempted 66 steals, 17 more than 2013 ... Kelly Inouye-Perez recorded the 300th victory of her head coaching career on Feb. 8 at Hawai’i ... junior Ally Carda tossed the first no-hitter of her career against Delaware on Feb. 6 and the 105th in UCLA history. UCLA has four over the last two seasons (Jessica Hall, two and Paige McDuffee, one) ... Carda has allowed one earned run or fewer in 21 of her 24 appearances ... freshman Gabrielle Maurice started all three games in the outfield in the Utah series and hit her second homer of the season, a three-run shot, on March 28 ... thanks to her nine hits over the last five games, sophomore Brittany Moeai has raised her batting average 70 points since the end of the Washington series, going from .236 to .306 entering the Oregon series ... since returning from a leg injury on March 15 that cost her eight games, junior Stephany LaRosa has reached base in every contest, collecting hits in nine of the 11 games and RBI in eight of them. LaRosa has no errors in 159 opportunities and just one passed ball ... sophomore Mysha Sataraka leads the Bruins with 12 multiple-RBI games. Two of them have come during Pac-12 play against Washington (March 24) and Utah (March 29), as she posted homers in both contests ... Hall wrapped up the Utah series with five RBI, recording three on a home run on March 29 and a pair on a double on March 30. In the circle, she has allowed no more than three earned runs in any of her 18 appearances and zero earned runs in 14 of them ... senior Alyssa Tiumalu hit her first homer since the opening weekend on March 29, a two-run shot ... sophomore Allexis Bennett has been on fire since returning to the lineup following a suspension for a violation of team rules. In eight contests, she has 10 hits in 20 at-bats (.500) with eight stolen bases and eight runs scored. She has hits, runs and steals in six of her eight games, tying career highs with three hits and three stolen bases on March 29 against Utah ... with her current six-game hitting streak, freshman Delaney Spaulding has at least three different streaks of six games. She hit safely in 13 in a row from Feb. 7-23 and seven straight from March 4-9.