Titans Head North for Showdown With Pacific

April 28, 2010

FULLERTON, CA -

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FIRST PITCH: The 2010 regular season is coming to a close and the Cal State Fullerton softball team will begin the home stretch this weekend on the road in Stockon, Calif., to take on Pacific in a three-game series at Bill Simoni Field. The Titans and Tigers open with a May Day doubleheader on Saturday (May 1) at 12 p.m. with Sunday's single-game finale also beginning at Noon.

I NEED STATS, STAT!: Live in-game statistics via CBS College Sports' Gametracker will be available for all three contests. Fans can access the links from the softball schedule page at FullertonTitans.com.

I SEE YOU!: For the fifth consecutive season, fans can watch the Titans live over the Internet thanks to a partnership between the Big West Conference and CBS College Sports. Live video streaming of selected Cal State Fullerton softball home and road contests will be available on a subscription basis and can be accessed by visiting www.BigWest.org/TV. A monthly subscription of \$9.95 or an annual subscription of \$79.95 delivers exclusive coverage of every home and conference women's volleyball and men's and women's basketball contests along with selected men's and women's soccer, baseball, softball, and Big West Conference championships.

IN THE POLLS: Neither Cal State Fullerton nor Pacific are ranked in either the USA Today/NFCA or the ESPN.com/USA Softball coaches polls entering this weekend's games.

ABOUT THE TIGERS: Pacific enters the week with a 19-25 overall record and a 5-6 mark against Big West opponents, standing a half a game ahead of the Titans in the standings... the Tigers will take on UC Davis on Wednesday (April 28) to conclude their three-game series with one another after the finale was postponed by rain... Lindsey Pierce leads the way offensively, batting .369 overall with 22 runs scored and 23 walks... Megan Hom (.343) and Karie Wilson (.304) are also hitting better than .300 on the year... Nikki Armagost (10-8, 2.04) is the ace of the staff, striking out 93 in 123.2 innings and holding opponents to a .216 average... Baylor transfer Shaina Brock (6-9, 4.21 ERA) has also seen significant time in the circle.

SERIES RECORDS: Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series with Northern California rival Pacific by a 64-27 count, having won the last six straight in the series following series sweeps in 2008 and 2009... the Titans are 26-14 all-time against the Tigers in Stockton, winning by the scores of 8-0 (5), 4-0, and 4-3 in their last trip in 2008... Fullerton is 10-5 in its last five trips to Pacific since head coach Michelle Gromacki took over in 2000 and her 23-8 record against the Tigers is second only to her 26-4 mark against Cal State Northridge in her coaching career.

ARAGON NABS WEEKLY HONORS: Following a hot-hitting weekend against UC Davis, freshman Gabby Aragon became the third Titan to be named the Big West Player of the Week on April 26. Aragon, who entered the weekend hitting just .156 on the season, was 7-for-10 at the plate, slugging 1.300 and "hitting for the cycle" with a double, triple, home run, and four singles in the series. She led the team in nearly every major offensive category (average, hits, runs, extra base hits, RBI, and total bases) while tallying three multi-hit games that doubled her season total to six this season.

ARAGON'S STREAK REACHES FIVE: Thanks to her performances last weekend against UC Davis, Aragon extended her team-best hitting streak to five consecutive games during which she is batting .588 (10-for-17) with five runs scored, four extra base hits, and four RBI. In the process, Aragon, who had just four hits to her name prior to the start of her streak, has raised her batting average 150 points to .255 overall on the year - which ranks fourth on the team.

TITANS PUT THEIR HITTING SHOES ON: Cal State Fullerton collected 12 hits in game two of its series with UC Davis, giving the Titans five double-digit hit games in 12 Big West Conference contests. Fullerton, which is hitting just .232 as a team overall this season, is knocking around league pitchers to the tune of a conference-best .303 average, sporting five regulars who are hitting better than .300 in league games this season.

MORE ON THE BATS: Aside from their conference-best average, the Titans also rank first in the Big West in slugging percentage (.456), hits (99), triples (3), home runs (10), and total bases (149) while ranking second in on-base percentage (.361), runs scored (55), and RBI (49).

ANDERSON ALSO REDISCOVERING HER GROOVE: An 0-for-4 day in the series opener against UC Davis was not a bad omen of things to come for junior Torrie Anderson against the Aggies as she finished 5-for-7 with four runs scored and her eighth home run of the year in the final two contests to raise her conference batting average to .350 on the year - second only to Aragon's .417 against Big West pitching. Anderson has hits in eight of the team's 12 conference contests - including four multi-hit performances - and leads the team in hits (14), runs scored (12), doubles (4), home runs (2), and walks (5).

TITANS LOOKING FOR "ROAD" TO SUCCESS: Fullerton will play two of its final three Big West series away from the friendly confines of Anderson Family Field beginning this weekend in Stockton, still looking for its first conference road win of the year. All five of the Titans' conference wins have come at home where they are 5-4 while Fullerton will be playing on the road for only the second time league season, and the first since being swept by Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo two weekends ago.

STEADY AS SHE GOES: Senior Kadie Baldwin has been the Titans' most consistent hitter since the start of Big West Conference play, collecting hits in nine of the team's 12 league contests and hitting .333 (12-for-36) overall against conference pitching. Almost half of her 30 hits on the season have come against Big West pitchers as she opened the league season with hits in her first four games while having a five-game streak snapped in the series finale against UC Davis.

KRYSTAL CLEAR: Joining teammate Gabby Aragon with any sort of extended hitting streak is redshirt sophomore Krystal Heinle, who has hit in each of her last four games, posting a .385 (5-for-13) average with RBIs in each of her last three games (four total).

HEINLE ALSO STEADY IN THE CIRCLE: Aside from swinging the bat well as of late, Krystal Heinle has also been solid in the circle, allowing just 14 earned runs over her last 45 2/3 innings (2.15 ERA) dating back to the middle of March, scattering just 45 hits and dropping her overall ERA by just over two-and-a-half runs during that stretch to a team-low 4.83 this season.

LABAN SHINES FOR FIRST CONFERENCE WIN: Redshirt freshman Katey Laban collected her first victory in the circle against a Big West Conference opponent, taking a no-hitter into the fifth inning against UC Davis and a shutout into the seventh against the Aggies before surviving for the 6-3 victory. The win - her first since besting nationally-ranked Louisiana-Lafayette on March 21 - improved her record to 3-6 overall on the season, tying her for second on the team in wins and dropped her ERA nearly a full run from 8.36 to 7.45 overall on the year.

TITANS REQUIRE NEAR PERFECTION: With only three regular season Big West Conference series remaining in 2010, Cal State Fullerton will need to be nearly perfect if it is to avoid finishing with the fewest wins in school history. The Titans will need to finish at least 8-1 in their final nine games to match the win total of the 2004 squad that finished 18-34 - the first losing season in school history.

WHERE ARE WE RUNNIN'?: Apparently it's to home plate. Since the start of Big West play junior Torrie Anderson and sophomore Nicole Johnson have done that more than most players in the conference this season. Anderson leads the Big West with 12 runs scored (one of only two players entering this weekend in double digits) while Johnson is tied for third with nine runs scored. Overall, Anderson ranks tied for sixth in the league with 26 runs scored while Johnson's 17 runs are five shy of the top 10.

SECOND-HALF HITTER: More than half of Torrie Anderson's team-high 38 hits have all come in the last 20 games as the junior is batting .371 (23-for-62) in that span with 16 runs scored, 12 walks, and seven RBI out of the lead-off spot in the lineup. Prior to that, Anderson was hitting just .217 (15-for-69) in her first 24 games of the year, despite scoring 10 runs, slugging six home runs, and driving in 15 more. Thanks to her second-half splurge, the Valencia native has raised her average 69 points during that span to .290 overall this season.

"BOOM" GOES THE DYNAMITE: The Titans' bats awoke last weekend against UC Davis in the home run category last weekend, as Torrie Anderson and Gabby Aragon both went deep to keep Fullerton on its perch atop the league standings in that category and snap a seven-game homerless string. The Titans continue to lead the league with 28 long balls on the season - besting second-place Cal State Northridge by just three. Individually, sophomore Trina Harrison leads the league with nine home runs on the season with teammate Torrie Anderson standing in a tie for second with eight home runs in 2010.

A LITTLE EXTRA "BOOM" FOR YOUR BUCK: Nearly half (13) of Fullerton's 28 home runs this season have come with runners on, including a trio of grand slams and three, three-run home runs. In addition, of the 28 home runs, 14 of those have come with no outs and nine have led-off an inning.

RECORD BOOK WATCH: Anderson's eighth home run of the season in game two of the series against UC Davis last weekend gave the junior 22 long balls for her career, putting her in sole possession of 10th place and just one shy of moving into a tie with Katie Gollhardt (2005-08) for ninth place... Sophomore Nicole Johnson has been hit by a pitch 20 times in her brief career, placing her in eighth place all-time.

WHILE WE'RE AT IT...: Trina Harrison's nine home runs this season have her on the verge of breaking into the school's single-season top 10 list with 12 regular season games remaining, trailing three players (including teammate Torrie Anderson) with 11 home runs in a season for ninth place. Anderson, who hit 11 home runs last season as a sophomore, joins former Titans Jessica Doucette (11 in 2007) and Chris Zboril (11 in 1996) in that spot.

CRADDICK ENJOYS BIG WEST PITCHING: Junior K.C. Craddick has continued to enjoy hitting Big West pitching as the Yorba Linda native is hitting .324 against Big West opponents and is batting 117 points better in conference action than her overall average of .207 on the year. Craddick has a hit in seven of the team's 12 conference contests thus far. It continues a trend of Big West success for the Yorba Linda native as Craddick also excelled against conference pitching as a freshman (.339) in 2008 and a sophomore (.321) in 2009.

RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME: Junior Torrie Anderson has been just that for the Titans this season, leading the team in both game-winning RBI (3) and game-winning runs (3). Anderson has driven home the game-winner in victories over Southern Utah, Baylor, and UC Santa Barbra while scoring the go-ahead runs against the Thunderbirds, Gauchos, and UC Riverside.

LUCKY SEVEN: Sophomore Trina Harrison became the first Titan to drive in seven runs in a single game in almost eight years, matching the performance of former Cal State Fullerton All-American Jodie Cox, who finished 3-for-3 with a pair of doubles, a triple, and seven RBI in a victory at Utah State on March 30, 2002. Harrison becomes the fifth Titan since 1997 to drive in as many runs, joining Cox, Yasmin Mossadeghi (vs. UNLV on 3.29.00) and Dara Marzolo (vs. Georgia State on 3.19.97) with seven RBI, while Gina Oaks drove in eight runs against Kansas on a pair of grand slams on Feb. 2, 2001. Oaks' eight RBI are the most in program history dating back to 1987 when complete season box scores are available.

ISN'T THAT "GRAND"?: Sophomores Nicole Johnson and Trina Harrison each slugged grand slams as part of the Titans' 12-3 victory in game two against UC Santa Barbara on April 2, the first time that has happened since current Titan Torrie Anderson and former All-American Kiki Munoz accomplished the feat as part of an 11-0 win over UC Riverside on April 5, 2008. The grand slams were the second and third hit by a Titan this season after Anderson slugged one at UCLA back on Feb. 24 as Fullerton tried to rally in the seventh. For Johnson, it was her second career grand slam after hitting one against Cal Poly on March 29 last season, and the first in Harrison's brief career while Anderson leads all active Titans with three in her two-plus seasons.