|Follow PSU Softball:||Follow @PennStateSB|
The first of three opponents for Penn State this week, St. Francis will be the Lions' home-opening series this year. Game one of the doubleheader, which begins at 6 p.m. at Nittany Lion Field, will be broadcast live locally on WBLF 970 AM and WPHB 1260 AM. The game audio will also be available on www.GoPSUsports.com. Live stats will be available on GoPSUsports.
NEXT UP... This weekend, Penn State travels to Purdue and Indiana for Big Ten opening weekend. The Lions meet Purdue at 3 p.m. Friday, March 31 and again at 6 p.m. the next day before traveling to Bloomington to square-off against the Hoosiers for a noon doubleheader on Sunday, April 2. Live stats will be available for all three games with audio for both Purdue contests available at GoPSUsports.com.
HAINES NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK... Sophomore catcher Hollee Haines (Riverside, Calif.) received Big Ten Softball Player of the Week honors after her outstanding performance at East Carolina's Pirate Invitational last weekend. A 2004 all-region pick, she batted almost .450 over a five-game stretch, including a dramatic game-winning homerun to lift Penn State over host East Carolina, 2-1, late in the game on March 25. The homer was one of two she hit on the weekend.
PENN STATE OFF TO BEST RECORD EVER... The Nittany Lions' 18-4 mark is the best ever start for the program. The Lions were carrying a 16 game win-streak until a 4-0 loss to No. 7 California on Sunday. March 26 broke the streak. OPENING THE CONFERENCE SEASON ON TOP... Penn State leads the Big Ten with an 18-4 record, putting them on top of the standings heading into the opening conference weekend.
THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS...
St. Francis (11-15)... Next up for the Penn State softball team is a doubleheader against St. Francis at home on Nittany Lion Field March 29 at 6 p.m. The Red Flash dropped both game of the doubleheader last year to Penn State, which included a perfect game from hurler Missy Beseres (Golden Valley, Minn.). Beseres has recorded two perfect games in her career, both vs. the Red Flash. The first meeting between the two teams was in 1990. The series record stands at 20-0.
Purdue (18-16)... The Lions taken on Big Ten foe Purdue in West Lafayette, Ind., this weekend on March 31 and April 1. First pitch on Friday, March 31 is at 3 p.m. A noon start is planned for Saturday, April 1. In their last meeting, redshirt-senior hurler Missy Beseres shut out the Boilermakers (6-0) and was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week for her performance. Penn State took both contests against Purdue during the 2005 season, 6-0 and 4-2. The Boilermakers' finished their 2005 season with a 10-10 conference record and 34-24-1 overall record behind Penn State in the final standings. The series record between the two teams stands at 19-9.
Indiana (13-11-1)... Big Ten foe Indiana will host the Lions on April 2 at noon for a conference doubleheader. The last time these two teams met, Penn State edged Indiana in both games, 1-0 and 4-2. Standout pitcher Missy Beseres struck out 11 batters vs. Indiana as part of her Big Ten Pitcher of the Week performance. Indiana finished the 2005 season 11th in the final standings with a 2-18 conference record and 13-41 overall record. Since Penn State first played Indiana in 1977, the series record sits at 17-24.