Fresno State plays a doubleheader Wednesday vs. UNLV and a three-game series over Friday and Saturday vs. Utah State
April 3, 2012
By Jason Clay
Fresno State (24-13, 4-1 WAC) vs. UNLV (17-16, 0-0 MW) - Doubleheader
Date: April 4, 2012
Game Times: 5 & 7 p.m.
Fresno State (24-13, 4-1 WAC) vs. Utah State(10-22, 2-4 WAC)
Dates: April 6-7, 2012
Game Times: Friday: 6 p.m.; Saturday: 1 & 3 p.m.
Site: Bulldog Diamond (3,288) - Fresno, Calif.
Radio: ESPN2 790 AM with Andrew Haynes Wednesday and Guy Haberman over the weekend
Live Stats: Gametracker Links
Video Streaming: Click Here (Subscription Required)
FRESNO, Calif. - The Fresno State softball team continues on with its two-week home stand, as the Bulldogs play five games at Bulldog Diamond this week. It begins on Wednesday with a doubleheader against UNLV starting at 5 p.m. and ends with a three-game WAC series versus Utah State.
The Bulldogs and Aggies play one game Friday night at 6 p.m. and two on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.
Fans can listen to all of this week's Bulldog softball action on the radio at ESPN2 790 AM. Nick Papagni will be calling Wednesday's action while Guy Haberman will be behind the mic over the weekend for the Utah State series.
Fresno State is hosting a cancer awareness day on Saturday and has partnered up with the Susan G. Komen Central Valley Foundation. In addition, other local cancer organizations will be on hand and cancer survivors will be recognized during the game.
Anyone with a military ID will receive free admission on Saturday as part of Fresno State's season-long Salute to Saturday's Wounded Warrior Project. Fans wearing their favorite baseball or softball jersey to Friday's game will also receive free admission.
After playing 23 games in March and finishing the month with a 15-8 record, the Bulldogs now move forward to April and the tail end of the 2012 season. The Bulldogs have 18 regular season games remaining and 12 of them are at home.
Fresno State is 16-4 at home this season and has outscored opponents 114-43 at Bulldog Diamond.
The Bulldogs enter the week with a four-game winning streak, one game off its longest winning streak of the season at five games (Feb. 18-23). With a 4-1 WAC record, the Bulldogs are just a half-game back of Hawai'i in first place.
Once this week is through, Fresno State hosts Cal Poly on Monday, April 9 for a single game at 5 p.m. to conclude the home stand. After that, Fresno State travels to San Jose State for a three-game series, April 13-14.
Fresno State's Series History Against UNLV
Wednesday's doubleheader against UNLV and Fresno State will be the first games played between the two schools since they met in the first game of the 2009 NCAA Regional played at UCLA. Fresno State won that game 2-1 behind Morgan Melloh's 16 strikeouts in the circle. That was the fourth-straight win for the Bulldogs over the Rebels and Fresno State has won 14 of the 15 games against UNLV since 1998, seven of them by shutouts. The `Dogs have a 47-9 overall advantage in their series with the Rebels.
Fresno State's Series History Against Utah State
The Bulldogs own a 28-11 series advantage over Utah State and have won 15-straight games over the Aggies. Fresno State's last loss to Utah State came on March 16, 2001 at the Kia Klassic in Fullerton, Calif. when the `Dogs were ranked No. 7 nationally at the time. In the 15 wins since that loss, Fresno State has held USU to two runs or less 12 times and has won by an average margin of 5.6 runs per game.
Receiving Votes Once Again
For the first time since the first week of the season, Fresno State received votes in this week's USA Today/NFCA Top 25 poll. The Bulldogs drew two votes that placed Fresno State at No. 32 in the nation. The Bulldogs have already played six ranked teams, including No. 1 Cal, three others that are receiving votes and still have another top 25 team to face in No. 15 Hawai'i at the end of April. Fresno State's RPI ranking this week was No. 51, which was up 25 spots from the week before.
Moore Is Better
Fresno State designated player Courtney Moore led the Bulldogs to a 3-0 record last week, including two wins over BYU, by going 4-for-9 at the plate with two home runs and three RBIs. Both of her homers came in back-to-back games on Friday when the `Dogs swept the doubleheader against BYU. Her homer in game two, a solo shot in the fifth inning, ended up being the winning run in the 10-9 victory. Her other home run in the first game came when she led off the second inning with a shot out to left to give Fresno State its first run in the 3-1 victory. She went 2-for-3 in both games against the Cougars last weekend. Moore is batting .412 in conference play this year, going 7-for-17 with a double and her two home runs last weekend.
Moses Doing It In The Circle And At The Plate
Senior Michelle Moses was the winning pitcher for the Bulldogs in all three of Fresno State's games last week. She started the week off on March 27 by throwing a complete game in the 2-1 victory over UC Santa Barbara. Moses had eight strikeouts and only allowed five hits and one run in the win over the Gauchos. She came back to start the first game of Friday's doubleheader and threw yet another complete game, her 18th of the season, to lead the `Dogs to a 3-1 win. The one run scored on Moses was unearned and she only allowed three hits while striking out eight against the Cougars. Her third victory of the weekend came in the second game of the doubleheader against BYU. She entered the game in the fourth inning and went one and one-thirds in relief to pick up the victory. This is the third time this season that Moses has won three-straight decisions and she did it last week by holding opposing batters to a .161 batting average in her three appearances.
Moses hit two home runs in the game two victory over BYU on Friday. It was her fourth career multi-home run game and it increased her WAC-leading home run total to 14 on the season. Moses now has 55 career home runs, which is seven off the school record held by Christina Clark (2003-06) and nine off the WAC record held by NM State's Hoku Nohara.
With three home wins last week, Fresno State has improved to 16-4 at home this year. The Bulldogs are currently in the midst of a 10-game home stand, which was actually cut down to nine games when the third game of the BYU series last weekend was rained out. The Bulldogs are hitting .309 as a team at Bulldog Diamond and have outscored opponents 114-43 in their 20 home games this year. Fresno State has six games remaining on its current home stand and plays 12 of its 18 remaining games during the regular season at home.
Fresno State Athletics lost a long supporter recently when Mr. Byrum C. Bingham passed away. "Bing," as he was affectionately known, opened Bingham Toyota in Clovis over 40 years ago and was a tremendous philanthropist to the University and the Fresno Region. Along with his wife, he was generous to the community with support and donation to the Salvation Army, Majorie Mason Center, March of Dimes, Fresno Community Hospital and Fresno State. His more than generous gifts were directly reflected to the student-athletes. Supporting all sports at Fresno State, Bing especially loved softball and he dearly loved and respected head coach Margie Wright. From sponsoring tournaments to being a partner in the Fresno State car sponsorship program to advertising in our sport arenas, he was a First Team Scholarship donor, which provided a full grant-in-aid for one softball player.
Fresno State has a 19-1 record this season when out-hitting its opponent, but is just 4-10 when being out-hit and 1-2 when the hits are tied. That has been crucial to the success of the team this year as has being the first team to score. Fresno State sports a 10-1 record this season when it scores before its opponent does.
Freshman Maria Sio has driven in two runs in each of the past two games. They were the first multi-RBI games of her career. Sio enters the week batting .300 on the year with five doubles, 12 runs scored and 12 driven in.
Freshman Kiley Shae Aldridge picked up her first career save in Fresno State's 10-9 win over BYU in the second game of last Friday's doubleheader. Aldridge threw two scoreless innings, giving up just two hits and tying her season-high with three strikeouts.
Sophomore Brooke Ortiz has gone 8-for-19 (.421) with three RBIs, three runs scored and one double in the last six games. Her hot streak began at the start of conference play and that should come as no surprise. Last year as a freshman, Ortiz batted .333 in WAC play and her .315 batting average for the entire season led the team.
Michelle Moses and Courtney Moore hit back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning against BYU in the second game of last Friday's doubleheader. It was the second time this season that the `Dogs have hit back-to-back jacks. The first time was with Moses and Vonnie Martin, who went yard on consecutive at-bats in the first inning of the March 4, 5-1 win over Charlotte.
Fresno State leads the WAC with 88 extra-base hits on the season. The Bulldogs are tied for third in the league with 44 doubles, lead the WAC with 12 triples and are second with 31 home runs.
After going 2-0 against BYU last weekend, Fresno State jumped ahead of the Cougars and back into the No. 3 spot in this weeks mid-major poll. Fresno State trails No. 1 Louisiana (30-1) and No. 2 Hawai'i (29-3). The Bulldogs will have their shot to surpass Hawai'i, as they play UH in a three-game series at the end of April. The Mid-Major poll can be found at http://midmajorpoll.blogspot.com.