UC Santa Barbara at Cal State Fullerton
Dates: Friday, May 13 and Saturday, May 14
Times: 6 p.m. / 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Location: Fullerton, Calif.
Venue: Anderson Family Field
Live Stats: FullertonTitans.com
Series Record: Cal State Fullerton leads 107-13
A LOOK AT THE WEEK
Cal State Fullerton closes out the regular season with a three-game series against UC Santa Barbara beginning Friday, May 13 and concluding with a doubleheader Saturday, May 14. Friday's contest starts at 6 p.m., while Saturday's twinbill begins at 2 p.m., with the nightcap following at approximately 4 p.m.
Be sure to stick around after the game as Cal State Fullerton Softball honors its eight seniors in Jasmine Antunez, Paige Kisling, Sarah Moore, Morgan Paul, Courtney Rodriguez, Melissa Sechrest, Missy Taukeiaho and Desiree Ybarra.
TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALLGAME
Cal State Fullerton students receive free admission to Titan home games with their Titan I.D. card. For all pricing and additional ticket information, please click HERE.
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. GAUCHOS
The Titans and the Gauchos have met a whopping 120 times in program history and Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series 107-13, which is an impressive .892 winning percentage. When playing at Anderson Family Field, CSF leads 49-5.
BIG WEST CONFERENCE CHAMPS
The Titans' series win over CSUN last weekend clinched the Big West regular season crown for the club as well as an automatic NCAA Tournament berth. The league championship is the first for Cal State Fullerton since 2006, while the postseason appearance is the first for the program since 2009.
Cal State Fullerton will find out its opponent in the NCAA Regionals this Sunday, May 15 at 7 p.m., during the NCAA Selection Show.
CSF SELECTION SHOW WATCH PARTY
After winning its ninth Big West Conference title in program history and its first in 10 years, the Cal State Fullerton softball team invites friends, family and fans to join in the celebration and watch the NCAA Division I Softball Selection Show on Sunday, May 15 at Roscoe's in Fullerton.
The event will kick off at 5:30 p.m., with dinner and drinks, followed by a season recap and senior recognition at 6:30 p.m., before concluding with the selection show at 7 p.m.
The Titans are hoping to raise additional funds to support the team as they head into the postseason. During the event, there will be opportunities to donate towards conference championship rings for the student-athletes.
Any questions regarding the event can be directed to Lauren Schoenherr at 657-278-7034 or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
LAST TIME OUT
For the first time since 2006, the Cal State Fullerton softball team captured the Big West Conference Championship. The Titans secured their spot in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2009 with a 2-0 victory over CSUN on Sunday at Matador Diamond behind a stellar performance from senior left-hander Desiree Ybarra.
With the victory, the Titans improve to 41-13 overall and 15-3 in Big West Conference action, while the Matadors drop to 31-22 on the year and 11-7 in league play.
Ybarra logged her 12th complete game of the season as she improved to 14-6 on the year. The Riverside, Calif., native effectively shut down the Matadors as she did not allow a base hit until the fourth inning.
As Ybarra held steady in the circle, the Titan offense got a spark from sophomore shortstop Shianne Brannan who belted her second home run of the year in the third inning. Brannan teed off against CSUN starter Daphne Pofek (18-8) and gave Cal State Fullerton all the run support it would need to win the game and the league title.
Pofek lasted 3.0 innings and suffered the loss after allowing one run on two hits. She was relieved by Taylor Troost who pitched the remaining 4.0 innings of work and allowed one run on five hits, while striking out two and walking one.
The second Titan run came in the fifth inning when Missy Taukeiaho, who drew a two-out walk, came around to score on a double to left-center by Alexis Gonzalez to give Cal State Fullerton a two-run lead.
Ybarra continued to mow down the Matadors in the circle as she allowed just three hits in the game. She collected the win after pitching 7.0 shutout innings with six strikeouts and just one walk.
Brannan finished the game batting 1-for-3 with one run and an RBI, while Taukeiaho was 1-for-3 with a run scored. Gonzalez was 1-for-4 with an RBI and Courtney Rodriguez went 2-for-4 for the Titans.
IN THE POLLS
Cal State Fullerton worked its way into the Top 25 in the USA Today/NFCA Softball Poll for the week of April 26. Although they dropped out of the poll the following week, the appearance marked the second ranking for the Titans in as many seasons which was the first time Cal State Fullerton received a top 25 mark in back-to-back seasons since 2008 and 2009.
Cal State Fullerton softball is ranked 28 in RPI. The Titans have the strongest RPI in the Big West Conference, while Long Beach State is second in the league with an RPI of 36.
Earlier this season, Cal State Fullerton pushed its winning streak to 13 straight games marking the longest winning streak for a Titans' softball program since 2002 when they won an impressive 32 games in a row from March 1 - April 20. That streak is the second-longest in program history coming in just behind the program-record 35 game winning streak set in 1987.
The Titans opened Big West Conference play with a 12-0 record marking their best start to league action since 2002 when Cal State Fullerton started conference play with a 13-0 ledger. In that year, the Titans finished the season with a 22-2 Big West Conference record and an overall mark of 53-13 en route to making an appearance in the NCAA Regionals.
With a series win at CSUN over the weekend, Cal State Fullerton's overall record improved to 41-13. The Titans reached the 40-win plateau for the first time since the 2003 season in which the Titans finished with a 41-15 overall record and hosted the NCAA Regionals.
Cal State Fullerton has posted a 41-13 record with a winning percentage of .759 which ranks 19th nationally in win-loss percentage. However, the Titans' wins are not the only category making the top 25 in the NCAA. As a team, Fullerton's pitching staff has posted a 2.19 ERA which leads the Big West Conference and ranks 14th nationally.
Individually, the Titans have a pair of players whose stats also rank in the nation's top 25. Senior third baseman Missy Taukeiaho ranks sixth in the nation in doubles per game (.041), while junior rightfielder Delynn Rippy ranks 14th nationally in triples (5).
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 136 victories and looks to finish off the weekend with 139.
WALK THIS WAY
Missy Taukeiaho is leading the Titans in walks this season as she has drawn 37 bases on balls which lead both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference. She has accounted for more than 20 percent of the Titans' walks this season as the sqaud has drawn 164 total walks, which also leads the league.
GOOD AS GOLD
Freshman right-hander Sydney Golden boasts an 17-4 record on the year to rank fourth in the Big West in wins. She has pitched eight complete games and two shutouts in 27 appearances. The Riverside, Calif., native owns a team-best 1.66 ERA, which is good for second in the conference. and 27th in the nation.
In 18 conference games thus far, Golden has made 11 appearances and is 7-1 with a 0.67 ERA. She has notched four complete games and one shutout while striking out 21 batters over 52.0 innings of work and allowing just five earned runs.
Desiree Ybarra has set the tone in the circle for the Titans' pitching staff as the senior left-hander owns a 1.84 ERA in 34 appearances with 23 starts. The Riverside, Calif., native has collected 14 wins, 12 complete games, five shutouts, one save and 127 strike outs this season. Additionally, she has allowed just 55 walks and 124 hits in 144.1 innings of work.
Ybarra is third in the Big West in ERA (1.84) and third in opponent batting average (.229).
During conference action, Ybarra has seen 13 appearances and has posted a 7-1 record with a 1.65 ERA. She has fanned 51 batters over 55.0 innings pitched.
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 21 stolen bases in 25 attempts and Courtney Rodriguez is second on the team with 14 steals in 18 attempts. Following close behind is Delynn Rippy with 13 steals on 15 attempts. The trio account for 48 of the Titans' 82 stolen bases.
The Titans not only lead the Big West Conference in doubles with 84, they also own the top three individual spots in the doubles category. Missy Taukeiaho leads the league with 22 doubles, while Melissa Sechrest and Sarah Moore are tied for second in the conference with 13 doubles each. The trio have combined for 48 doubles on the year which is more than UC Davis (40) has as a team and just two less than Hawai'i (50) has tallied.
THE POINT OF NO RETURN
After 54 games played, Cal State Fullerton is undefeated when leading after the fifth inning. The Titans have won 31 of their 41 victories holding onto a lead after the fifth inning. CSF is an impressive 31-0 when leading after the fifth inning.
IN THE CIRCLE
The Titans have also seen strong pitching this season as well. CSF leads the Big West with a 2.19 ERA which is also 14th in the nation. Additionally, Fullerton leads the conference in opponent batting average (.240), wins (41), fewest runs allowed (138) and fewest earned runs allowed (113).
In addition to leading the conference in the Big West standings with 15-3 record, the Titans have done a solid job offensively this season as they are leading the Big West Conference in 10 offensive categories. Cal State Fullerton sits atop the league in slugging percentage (.442), on-base percentage (.382), runs scored (281), hits RBIs (236), doubles (84), triples (12), total bases (628), total plate appearances (1671), walks (164) and sacrifice flies (16).
HOME RUN TERRITORY
The Titans have launched 29 long balls on the year and 17 of them have come from the bat of Missy Taukeiaho and Alexis Gonzalez. Gonzalez leads the team with nine bombs, while Taukeiaho is hot on her heels with eight. Melissa Sechrest has belted six, while Sarah Moore and Shianne Brannan have recorded two each. Delynn Rippy and Desiree Ybarra have each added one apiece.
During the month of March, Cal State Fullerton boasted a record of 16-4 which is an .800 winning percentage. Three of the Titans' four losses came to nationally-ranked opponents.
While posting an .800 winning percentage in the month of March was impressive, the Titans have done even better in April as they posted a 13-2 record for a winning percentage of .867.
The Titans kicked off the month of May with a 2-1 showing. Let's see what the rest of the month has in store.
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 36-3 on the year. Additionally, Fullerton is 22-2 when it scores in the first inning.
CSF has scored the majority of its runs in the first this season, plating 66 in the opening frame, while limiting their opponents to just 18.
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 10-0 record when taking the field on a Sunday. Most recently, CSF clinched the Big West title on a Sunday.
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 leads the team with a .362 batting average and has scored 48 runs, drove in 34, roped 22 doubles, ripped one triple and belted eight homers, while drawing 37 walks on the season. She also leads the team with a .678 slugging percentage and a .495 on-base percentage. Her 22 doubles and 37 walks lead both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference.
Her offense has picked up even more in conference action as she is batting .340 with 21 runs scored, 17 runs batted in, seven doubles four home runs and 35 total bases.
In Big West play, she has posted a team-leading .745 slugging percentage and a .516 on-base percentage.
Additionally, she has drawn 15 walks and is 5-for-5 in stolen bases.
GET 'EM ON, GET 'EM OVER, GET 'EM IN
The Titans are hitting .507 (445-for-878) when successfully advancing runners on the base paths. Leading the way offensively in this situation is Delynn Rippy who is 49-for-77 (.636).
Additionally Cal State Fullerton is batting .478 (75-for-157) with a runner at third with less than two outs. Alexis Gonzalez has been most effective in this situation as she boasts a .625 batting average (10-for-16) with a runner at third and less than two outs.
Cal State Fullerton ranks in the top three in each statistical category in the Big West Conference (pitching, hitting and fielding). The Titans lead the league in earned run average (2.19), are second in fielding percentage (.970) and are third with a .305 batting average.
DOUBLE DOUBLE TOIL AND TROUBLE
Missy Taukeiaho leads both Cal State Fullerton and the Big West Conference with 22 doubles on the year. She is averaging 0.41 doubles per game which is good for sixth nationally.
Earlier this season, Taukeiaho roped three doubles in one game earlier this season against UT-San Antonio in the season opener on Feb. 12.
As a team, the Titans have recorded 84 doubles which leads the Big West Conference. Cal State Fullerton's average of 1.56 double per game ranks 34th in the NCAA.
This season, the Titans are undefeated in several situations. The breakdown is as follows:
In shutouts (13-0)
When scoring 10+ runs (3-0)
When leading after the fifth inning (31-0)
When hitting 2+ HRs in a game (5-0)
When playing on Sunday (10-0)
This season four Titans lead the Big West Conference in seven different statistical categories. Missy Taukeiaho leads the way as the leader in runs scored (48), doubles (22) and walks (37). Additionally Delynn Rippy leads the league in triples with five, while Samantha Vandiver is first in total plate appearances (199) and at-bats (180). Lastly, Courtney Rodriguez is one of just seven student-athletes in the Big West Conference to boast a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage.
Since Big West Conference action started in March, the Titans have dominated the league posting a 15-3 conference record.
The Titans' success comes from both a powerful offense and strong pitching as Cal State Fullerton's offense is third in the league with a .305 batting average, while the Titans' pitching staff tops in the conference with an ERA of 2.19.
This season, Cal State Fullerton has had a pitcher or player earn Big West Conference Player of the Week honors on six occasions.
Senior left-handed pitcher Desiree Ybarra is the only Titan to earn the honors multiple times this season as she was named Pitcher of the Week for the week of March 14 and again the week of March 28.
During the year, the Titans have swept the honors twice as Ybarra and junior catcher Alexis Gonzalez were named Pitcher and Player of the Week, respectively, the week of March 28. Then four weeks later junior rightfielder Delynn Rippy and freshman right-handed pitcher Sydney Golden collected the honors the week of April 25.
Rounding out the Titans' Player of the Week honors is senior third baseman Missy Taukeiaho who was earnded the award the week of April 4.
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 will find out its opponent in the NCAA Regionals during the Selection Show on Sunday, May 15 at 7 p.m.