Feb. 13, 2009
Carolina Classic Notes
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -
Penn State is preparing for a trip down south for the Carolina Classic hosted by the University of North Carolina. This promises to be another weekend of tough competition as the Nittany Lions face Wichita State, George Washington, No. 9 California and No. 23 North Carolina. The team will open up play Saturday at 10 a.m. against Wichita State and immediately follow with George Washinton. Sunday morning will see the Nittany Lions face No. 9 California at 10 a.m. before matching up with host and No. 23 North Carolina at 3 p.m. Fans can follow the action live as Gametracker will be provided for every game.
In Penn State's last appearance in North Carolina, the Nittany Lions won all three games of the 2008 Pirate Classic hosted by East Carolina. The Nittany Lions claimed five-inning wins over Appalachian State (8-0) and Syracuse (8-0), and a 9-3 victory over East Carolina.
SCOUTING WICHITA STATE
The Shockers joined the Nittany Lions at the Kajikawa Classic last weekend and are entering the weekend 2-2 after wins over Portland State (10-9) and Oregon (15-10) and losses to Nevada (12-5) and UCSB (8-5). As a team the Shockers are hitting .354, but the pitching staff has an average ERA of 8.04. Current Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Week Kara L'Hullier hit .429 on the weekend including a double and a grand slam while recording 11 putouts and seven assists at second base. Heather Gerritse also boasts an impressive .545 batting average while the rest of the Shocker lineup is quick around the base paths going 6-for-7 in stolen bases. Saturday is the first meeting between Penn State and Witchita State.
SCOUTING GEORGE WASHINGTON
The Colonials will open up their 2009 season at the Carolina Classic. Top returners are Katie Terrazas with a .298 batting average and nine doubles, and Amanda Gabriel with a .442 slugging percentage and 17 runs. Gabriel is a double threat in the circle with an ERA of 2.03 complete with 11 wins and five shutouts. Last year, George Washington finished eighth in the Atlantic 10 with an 8-10 conference record while going 12-27 overall. Saturday marks the first meeting between Penn State and George Washington.
The No. 9 Bears are coming off a perfect weekend at the Cathedral City Kickoff with wins over then No. 13 Houston (10-2), Liberty (15-1), Illinois (9-1) and Fordham (11-7). This is the first time since 2006 that Cal has started the season at 4-0. Freshman Elia Reid hit a sizzling .583 for the weekend while twin sister Jamia hit three homeruns for 10 RBI. Marissa Drewrey holds the top spot in the circle with a 3.94 ERA and 17 strikeouts. Sunday marks the third meeting between Penn State and California. The Bears lead the series 2-0.
SCOUTING NORTH CAROLINA
The No. 23 Tar Heels had a difficult weekend going 3-2 at the FIU Combat Classic. North Carolina lost by slim margins to Louisville (1-0) and Auburn (5-6), but came back to defeat FIU (1-0), Jacksonville (4-1) and Texas A&M Corpus Christi (2-0). Upon their return, junior Danielle Spaulding was named Pitcher of the Week for the Atlantic Coast Confernce. Spaulding finished the weekend with a perfect 0.00 ERA while striking out 27 batters in 13 innings. A double threat while at-bat, she also hit .333 for the weekend with two RBI. Brittany Robinson hit .231 on the weekend to accumulate three RBI. The Tar Heels are looking for a repeat of their 2008 campaign when they claimed the ACC Championship going 18-2 throughout conference play and 50-12-1 overall. Sunday will be the 14th meeting between Penn State and North Carolina. The Nittany Lions lead the series 8-5.
BIG TEN NETWORK REVEALS SCHEDULE
The Big Ten Network's live softball coverage begins with the Michigan-Northwestern series in Evanston. Game one of the series is scheduled for 1 PM ET on Saturday, March 21.
Every Big Ten softball team will appear on the network at least three times. The Big Ten Network will televise a softball doubleheader on most Wednesdays as well as selected games on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
The Nittany Lions will be featured towards the end of the regular season during the Purdue series and the Indiana series. All games will be broadcast live on the Big Ten Network with the exception of the second Indiana game which will be shown at 4 p.m. the same day.
NITTANY LION BIG TEN NETWORK DATES:
Penn State vs. Purdue - April 25 at 1 p.m.
Penn State vs. Purdue - April 26 at noon
Penn State vs. Indiana - May 2 at 4 p.m.
Penn State vs. Indiana - May 3 at 11 a.m.
KINLEY APPROACHING CAREER DOUBLES RECORD
With two doubles over the weekend, Danielle Kinley remains on track to break the all-time doubles mark before the season ends. She is currently tied at 37 with Nan Sichler who played for the Nittany Lions from 1985-88. Former teammate Ashley Esparza currently holds the record at 44.
PENN STATE SPOTLIGHT: Lisa Akamine
At the Kajikawa Classic, freshman pitcher/utility Lisa Akamine (Escondido, Calif.) defined what it means to have a breakout weekend. She picked up a save in her first career appearance in the circle, and throughtout the weekend compiled a low ERA of 0.72. She struckout eight batters in 9.2 innings of work and inked her first win in a 13-1 thumping of Cal State Bakersfield.
Even more impressive was her time in the batters box. She currently leads the Nittany Lions with a sizzling .429 batting average with six hits in 14 at-bats. She is also tied with Danielle Kinley for RBI with four.