Cal State Fullerton at Cal Poly
Dates: Saturday, April 9 & Sunday, April 10
Times: 1 p.m./3 p.m. (DH) & 1 p.m.
Location: San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Venue: Bob Janssen Field
Live Stats: GoPoly.com
Series Record: Cal State Fullerton leads 40-29
A LOOK AT THE WEEK
Cal State Fullerton heads to San Luis Obispo, Calif., for its first Big West Conference road series against Cal Poly. The Titans and the Mustangs will play a doubleheader on Saturday, April 9 starting at 1 p.m., and wrap up the series with a single game Sunday, April 10 at 1 p.m.
FOLLOW THE TITANS
Fans can keep up with the latest in Cal State Fullerton athletics by following us on Facebook (FullertonTitans), Twitter (@FullertonTitans) and Instagram (FullertonTitans). In addition, the softball team has established its own official Facebook (csufsoftball), Twitter (@CSUFSoftball) and Instagram (csufsoftball) accounts.
KEEP UP WITH TITAN SOFTBALL
Live stats will be provided for all games this week. To access live stats for the games, log onto www.FullertonTitans.com and go to the softball schedule, then click live stats.
WATCH THE TITANS
Cal State Fullerton home softball contests will be broadcast live over the Internet at FullertonTitans.com. The Titans also offer live streaming video for home softball contests over the Internet courtesy of Big West.TV. Fans can catch all the exclusive action from the comfort of their home computers. To access the links, click on the audio or live video link on the schedule page.
TITANS VS. MUSTANGS
Cal State Fullerton and Cal Poly will meet for the 70th time in program history and the Titans lead the all-time series 40-29. A year ago, CSF swept the three-game series by scores of 5-4, 4-1 and 6-3 in Fullerton. The last time the two teams met in San Luis Obispo, the Mustangs took 2-out-of-3 games from the Titans.
LAST TIME OUT
The Cal State Fullerton softball team scored in every inning and posted a dozen runs with the help of Missy Taukeiaho's grand slam in the third as the Titans routed the Highlanders of UC Riverside 12-2 in five innings to complete the three-game sweep Sunday afternoon.
As has been the pattern for Cal State Fullerton as of late, the Titans scored early as they tallied three runs in the bottom of the first inning to give starting pitcher, Jasmine Antunez, a three-run lead to work with.
In the first inning, the Titans loaded the bases with nobody out. Sarah Moore and Melissa Sechrest both pulled the ball to the right side of the field grounding out to first, but plating a pair of runs, in the process on consecutive and identical plays.
Courtney Rodriguez drove a double back up the middle to give Fullerton a 3-0 lead.
Cal State Fullerton added to its lead in the bottom of the second as the Titans capitalized on a UCR error and took a 4-0 advantage.
The Highlanders managed to cut the Titans' lead in half after scoring two runs in the third on a two-run double by Chelsey Holley. Following the double, Cerissa Rivera was brought in to relieve Antunez and she finished the inning without allowing another run.
In the bottom of the frame, Rodriguez sent a one-out single down the leftfield line and Ariana Williams came in to pinch run. She immediately stole second then moved to third on a wild pitch before scoring on a single by Megan Estacio who earned her first start of the year at short.
The Titans loaded the bases and with two outs and full count, Taukeiaho launched her fifth home run of the year over the left-centerfield wall. The grand slam was the first of the season for Taukeiaho and it gave Cal State Fullerton a 9-2 lead over UC Riverside.
Christina Washington came in and pitched the fourth and fifth innings for the Titans without allowing a run. She allowed three hits and struck out two in the relief appearance.
Despite owning a seven-run lead, the Titans' offense was not done. Fullerton added three more runs in the bottom of the fourth on a hit batter, a base hit, two errors and a pair of walks.
Rivera was credited with the win – her third of the year. During her outing, she allowed just one walk.
UCR's starter Tayler Misfeldt (14-8) suffered the loss after pitching just 1.0 inning and allowing three runs on as many hits, while issuing one walk.
Taukeiaho finished the game batting 2-for-3 with a grand slam, four RBIs and three runs scored. Estacio was 1-for-2 with two runs and an RBI, while Rodriguez was 2-for-2 with a run batted in.
100 AND COUNTING
Head coach Kelly Ford recorded her 100th win at the helm of the Cal State Fullerton softball program against Santa Clara on Feb. 19. Ford now owns 123 victories and looks to finish off the weekend with 1263.
Desiree Ybarra has set the tone in the circle for the Titans' pitching staff as the senior left-hander owns a 1.89 ERA in 23 appearances with 14 starts. The Riverside, Calif., native has collected eight wins, eight complete games, three shutouts, one save and 86 strike outs this season. Additionally, she has allowed just 42 walks and 78 hits in 96.1 innings of work.
Ybarra is second in the Big West in ERA (1.89) and opponent batting average (.219).
GOOD AS GOLD
Freshman right-hander Sydney Golden boasts an 11-3 record on the year to rank third in the Big West in wins. She has pitched four complete games and one shutout in 17 appearances. The Riverside, Calif., native owns a 2.23 ERA, which also ranks third in the conference.
WALK THIS WAY
Missy Taukeiaho is leading the Titans in walks this season as she has drawn 23 bases on balls which lead both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference.
Sophomore Samantha Vandiver has collected a base hit in every game dating back to March 17. Since then, the outfielder from Huntington Beach, Calif., has put together a 10-game hitting streak - the longest such streak of the season. In the process, Vandiver has also racked up a 15-game reached base streak. She is familiar with streaks as she set a program record 24-game hitting streak as a freshman in 2015.
Cal State Fullerton has a trio of runners who have been hot on the base paths and posting double figures in stolen bases. Ariana Williams leads the squad with 14 stolen bases in 16 attempts and Courtney Rodriguez is second on the team with 13 steals in 15 attempts. Following close behind is Delynn Rippy with 10 steals on 11 attempts. The trio account for 37 of the Titans' 60 stolen bases (just over 60 percent) as they are a big reason Fullerton is ranked second in the league in steals this season.
LEADING THE CONFERENCE
The Titans have done a solid job offensively this season as they are leading the Big West Conference in five offensive categories. Cal State Fullerton sits atop the league in runs scored (201), doubles (55), triples (8), walks (129) and sacrifice flies (13). However, the Titans have also seen strong pitching this season as well. CSF leads the Big West in ERA (2.31), opponent batting average (.233), wins (28), runs allowed (105), earned runs allowed (83) and home runs allowed (14).
HOME RUN TERRITORY
The Titans have launched 14 long balls on the year and 11 of them have come from the bat of Alexis Gonzalez and Missy Taukeiaho. Gonzalez leads Cal State Fullerton with six, while Taukeiaho has contributed five. Melissa Sechrest, Desiree Ybarra and Sarah Moore have each belted one apiece.
IN GRAND FASHION
Senior third baseman Missy Taukeiaho belted a grand slam - her first of the season - against UC Riverside on Sunday. The Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., native stepped to the plate with bases loaded, two outs and drilled a 3-2 pitch over the left-centerfield wall to give the Titans a 9-2 lead over the Highlanders. Cal State Fullerton would go on to win 12-2 in five innings and Taukeiaho would be named Big West Conference Player of the Week for her efforts.
This season, the Titans' defense has turned 11 double plays. Three of those came in Fullerton's 10-0 win over Santa Clara, while two came in a mid-week contest versus Princeton. Their 11 DP's rank second in the Big West Conference.
During the month of March, Cal State Fullerton has boasted a record of 16-4 which is an .800 winning percentage. Three of the Titans' four losses came to nationally-ranked opponents.
PERFECTION IN THE FIELD
Senior first baseman Melissa Sechrest is about as sure-handed as an infielder can be, posting a 1.000 fielding percentage over her 31 games on the diamond. The ball has certainly found her as she has 219 total chances, resulting in 206 putouts and 13 assists. She has also helped turn nine of the Titans' 11 double plays on the year.
THE EARLY BIRD GETS THE WORM
Cal State Fullerton has made the most of scoring early in games. When the Titans score first, they are 25-2 on the year. Additionally, Fullerton is 14-1 when it scores in the first inning. CSF has scored the majority of its runs in the first this season, plating 45 in the opening frame, while limiting their opponents to just 15.
THE POINT OF NO RETURN
After 38 games played, Cal State Fullerton is undefeated when leading after the fifth inning. The Titans have won 18 of their 28 victories holding onto a lead after the fifth inning.
RETURN OF THE ALL-AMERICAN
Three-time All-American Missy Taukeiaho was selected as one of 50 student-athletes on the "Watch List" for the 2016 USA Collegiate Softball Player of the Year award. The is the second straight year she has been selected to the "Watch List."
This season the senior third baseman has scored 32 runs, drove in 22, roped 17 doubles, ripped one triple and belted five homers, while drawing 23 walks on the season. Her 17 doubles and 23 walks lead both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference.
GET 'EM ON, GET 'EM OVER, GET 'EM IN
The Titans are hitting .517 (327-for-633) when successfully advancing runners on the base paths. Leading the way offensively in this situation is Alexis Gonzalez who is 37-for-58 (.638). Additionally Cal State Fullerton is batting .468 (58-for-124) with a runner at third with less than two outs. Again, Gonzalez has been most effective in this situation as she boasts a .727 batting average (8-for-11) with a runner at third and less than two outs.
ANY GIVEN SUNDAY
The Titans have had their most success when playing on Sunday as the squad is undefeated when playing on that day of the week. Cal State Fullerton owns a 8-0 record when taking the field on a Sunday.
DOUBLE DOUBLE TOIL AND TROUBLE
Missy Taukeiaho leads both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference with 17 doubles on the year. Taukeiaho roped three doubles in one game earlier this season against UT-San Antonio in the season opener on Feb. 12. Behind Taukeiaho with 10 doubles is Sarah Moore. As a team, the Titans have recorded 55 doubles which leads the Big West Conference.
BWC STATISTICAL CATEGORIES
Cal State Fullerton ranks in the top three in each statistical category (pitching, hitting and fielding) in the Big West Conference. The Titans lead the league in earned run average with a 2.31 team ERA and are second in fielding percentage with a .969 mark. Fullerton rounds out the top three statistical categories with a .305 batting average which is good for third in the league.
BIG WEST WEEKLY HONORS
This season, the Titans have had four Big West Conference Player/Pitcher of the Week selections. Senior left-handed pitcher Desiree Ybarra has earned the honor twice, while Alexis Gonzalez and Missy Taukeiaho have collected the award once each.
Most recently, Taukeiaho was named BWC Player of the Week after batting .625 with two home runs, including a grand slam, scoring six runs and driving in seven. She finished the week with a .571 on-base percentage and a 1.182 slugging percentage.
The Titans have a pair of Ybarra's on the team in senior left-handed pitcher Desiree Ybarra and sophomore infielder Bryanna Ybarra. Desiree sports jersey No. 15, while Bryanna wears No. 16. With the same last name and consecutive jersey numbers, you'd think the pair are sisters - they're not.
Cal State Fullerton returns home to Anderson Family Field for a weekend series against UC Davis. The Titans and the Aggies will play a single game Friday, April 15 at 5 p.m., before facing off in a doubleheader on Saturday, April 16 starting at 12 noon.