April 26, 2011
Game 1 at La Salle on GameTracker
Game 2 at La Salle on GameTracker
Live Stats at Army
LEWISBURG, Pa. – It’s the final week of regular-season play for Bucknell softball, and the Bison are vying for the final Patriot League Tournament berth. Before they can get to the critical four-game series at Army this weekend, however, the Bison (12-32, 4-12) will make the short trip to La Salle for a 3:30 p.m. doubleheader on Wednesday. Live stats will be available for all six games.
ABOUT THE BISON
- Bucknell went 1-3 against Lafayette last weekend. The lone win came on a six-hit shutout from Bridget Gates (Milford, Conn./Academy of Our Lady of Mercy Lauralton Hall). An RBI single from Jessie Snyder (Tacoma, Wash./Stadium) scored Kathryn Wilkinson (Plantation, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas) in the second inning for the only run in the 1-0 victory.
- Gates’ shutout was her third of the year. In two appearances against Lafayette, the senior allowed just one earned run. That dropped her season ERA to a team-best 2.67. Gates also struck out 10 batters in the series, bringing her career total to 136.
- Alison Ford (Suisun City, Calif./Fairfield) hit .417 in the series and extended her current hitting streak to 11 games. With 54 hits this spring, the senior is tied for fifth in Bucknell single-season history.
- If the season ended today, Ford would rank eighth in Bucknell single-season history with her .412 batting average. Her offensive production this spring has improved her career average to .330, the 10th-best in program annals.
- Snyder broke into the program’s all-time top-10 in single-season walks this weekend. The senior reached base on walks five times against the Leopards, giving her 22 base-on-balls this spring. That is tied for seventh at Bucknell.
- Alex MacLean (Northampton, Pa./Northampton Area) reached the 100-strikeout plateau against Lafayette on Monday. The sophomore now has 102 for the season, giving her the fourth-best mark at Bucknell. She trails only Christie Wiest, who holds the top two spots with 122 and 106 strikeouts, and Brandi Porter in third with 104.
- Bucknell has a team ERA of 3.33 this season. Opposing pitchers’ earned run average comes in at just 1.98.
- The Bison have four games remaining this month. They head into the final week with a 5-13 record in April.
- Bucknell’s postseason plans are not entirely in its hands this weekend, but the Orange and Blue can certainly help themselves with a strong performance at Army. The Bison must win a minimum of three games against the Black Knights and get some help from other teams to remain in contention for the final berth in the Patriot League Tournament. Colgate, Lehigh and Holy Cross have already clinched a postseason berth. Bucknell, Army and Lafayette each still have a shot at the No. 4 seed.
ABOUT THE EXPLORERS
- La Salle is 2-31 overall and 0-12 in the Atlantic 10 this year, although the Explorers will play a pair against UMBC on Tuesday. La Salle’s two wins came on Feb. 26 against Lafayette (5-0) and on March 8 vs. Bryant (1-0). They have lost their last 25 contests.
- Ali Shepherd leads the Explorers in hitting with a .239 (22-for-92) average. Jackie McBride has the team’s top RBI total (10) despite hitting just .109. DJ Guinn is La Salle’s lone pitcher with an earned run average under 7.00. Guinn enters the week with a 1-13 record and a 3.56 ERA over 112.0 innings.
- La Salle closed out the 2010 season with a 13-30 overall record. The Explorers graduated their lone all-conference player in Gina Massaro, who hit .366 and led the team with a 2.38 ERA and 101 strikeouts.
- Bucknell claimed its first-ever win over La Salle when the teams squared off last year, bringing its series record to 1-5-1. The Bison scored three runs on four hits in the fourth inning to propel them to a 3-2 victory. The second game of the doubleheader ended in a scoreless tie after five innings due to lightning. Despite the no-decision, MacLean earned Bucknell’s first no-hitter since Sharon Nichols in 1991.
ABOUT THE BLACK KNIGHTS
- Army enters the week 23-21 overall and 6-10 in the Patriot League. The Black Knights’ league results have largely mirrored Bucknell’s with the main exception being their series with Lafayette. Army won three of four against the Leopards two weeks ago. Last weekend, Army dropped the final three games to Lehigh, 14-5 in five innings, 5-2 and 4-1.
- The Black Knights have benefited from their youth this spring. Freshman Amanda Nguyen is hitting a team-best .386 (59-for-153), while fellow rookie Haley Pypes leads in wins with an 11-11 record. Pypes also has a 3.27 earned run average and 80 strikeouts in 130.2 innings of work.
- Army won the 2010 Patriot League regular-season title and collected four all-league citations and the Patriot League Coach of the Year in the process. Erin McClain and Shawna Bleyl were first-team honorees, while Tiffany Held and Alexis AuBuchon were named to the second team. Only Bleyl and AuBuchon return in 2011.
- Bucknell trails slightly in the all-time series with Army, 39-32. The teams split the four-game regular-season series in Lewisburg last season, but the Bison had the last laugh, knocking the Black Knights out of the Patriot League Tournament on their home turf. In five games against Army last year, Elyse Colmenero (Fresno, Calif./Central) and Lauren Fry (South Plainfield, N.J./South Plainfield) both hit better than .400. MacLean recorded an ERA of 1.00 and limited opposing batters to a .177 average, while Gates’ ERA came in at 1.62.
Should the Bison clinch a postseason berth, they will play again May 12-14 at the Patriot League Tournament. The site of the double-elimination tournament will be determined after this weekend with the regular-season champion earning the right to host.