March 21, 2006
This Week's Schedule
Wednesday, March 22
NC State at East Carolina (DH) - 5 p.m.
Friday, March 24
Coastal Carolina at East Carolina - 4 p.m.
California at East Carolina - 6 p.m.
Saturday, March 25
Penn State at East Carolina - 4 p.m.
Buffalo at East Carolina - 8 p.m.
Sunday, March 26
California at East Carolina - 1 p.m.
Kent State at East Carolina - 3 p.m.
ECU Hosts NC State Wednesday And The 2006 Pirate Invitational, Including No. 7 California This Weekend
East Carolina continues its 15-game homestand this week with seven games, including a doubleheader Wednesday against NC State and a first-ever meeting with nationally-ranked Cal on Friday as a part of the Pirate Invitational.
ECU will open the Pirate Invitational on Friday against Coastal Carolina at 4 o'clock before squaring off against Cal.
The Pirates continue tournament play Saturday against Penn State (4 p.m.) and Buffalo (8 p.m.). ECU concludes tournament play Sunday with another game against Cal (1 p.m.) and Kent State (3 p.m.).
Wednesday's doubleheader against NC State will mark the Wolfpack's first visit to Greenville since 1983, when both schools were playing slow-pitch softball. NC State dropped softball following the 1983 campaign and restarted the program in 2004. NC State swept a doubleheader from ECU in Raleigh last season.
Invitational Includes Two NCAA Teams
The 2006 Pirate Invitational includes a pair of teams that participated in the 2005 NCAA Championships, Cal and Penn State. Cal advanced the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City a year ago as an at-large team from the Pac-10. Penn State also received an at-large bid to the tournament out of the Big 10.
Pirates Have Three Wins Over NCAA Teams This Season
East Carolina has already scored three victories over teams that participated in the 2005 NCAA Tournament this season. The Pirates are 3-1 against NCAA Tournament teams from a year ago with wins over Bethune-Cookman, Seton Hall and North Carolina. ECU's lone loss was a one-run loss to College of Charleston. The Pirates have six games remaining with teams that reached postseason play in 2005, including a trip to Chapel Hill to face UNC and three-game series at C-USA newcomer UCF, last season's A-Sun champion, in addition to Cal and Penn State.
Rare Game Against A PAC-10 Opponent
Friday's game against California will be the just the second game ever played by ECU against an opponent from the Pacific Athletic Conference. The only other time ECU has faced a PAC-10 opponent was during the 1999 NCAA Tournament. ECU was shipped out west after winning the Big South Conference championship and faced No. 3 Arizona in the opening round in Tuscon, falling by a score of 9-1.
California, ranked seventh in latest NFCA poll, will be the highest ranked team to visit Greenville. The previous highest ranked team to visit was DePaul during the 2002 season, when the Blue Demons came to town ranked 16th.
ECU Seeking First Win Over Top 10 Team
Since 1995, East Carolina is 0-4 against top-10 teams. In addition to its aforementioned game against third-ranked Arizona in 1999, ECU played a three-game series against former Conference USA rival DePaul in Chicago during the 2003 season and failed to record a win.
ECU has won two of its last four games against top-25 foes, including a victory over No. 25 North Carolina at home earlier this season. Prior to its meeting with UNC two weeks ago, the last time ECU faced a ranked opponent was 2004 when it suffered a 7-1 loss to No. 17 USF in the first round of the C-USA Tournament.
Jessup Eyeing 200 Career Hits
Senior Krista Jessup will look to become the seventh player in school history to collect 200 hits Wednesday against NC State. Jessup has tallied 199 hits during her career and needs one base hit to join the exclusive club.
Earlier this season, she became the ninth player at ECU to accumulate 100 career RBIs and continues to climb the school's career list for doubles. She has tallied 32 two-base hits in her career and currently ranks sixth on the school's list. Jessup ranks seventh on the school's career RBI list with 110.
Potter Making Most Of Her Opportunity
After collecting 12 hits in just 62 at-bats during her first two seasons, junior Jessica Potter is making the most of her playing time in 2006 as she has equalled her career hit total in 42 at-bats. She ranks third on the team in batting with a .286 average and has the third highest on-base percentage on the team.
Potter earned the spot on the team as a walk-on in the fall of 2003 and played in just 51 games during her first two seasons. She has driven in six runs this season, surpassing her career total of five entering the 2006 campaign.