Softball Preview - Games 49-51: UCF

Cicely Lopez

May 3, 2013

 Game 52: No. 5 Seed East Carolina (21-30) vs. No. 4 Seed Marshall (32-20)
 May 9 in Tulsa, Okla.
East Carolina vs. Marshall (First Round)  May 9 | 8:00 p.m. (ET) | GameTracker Video
 Game Notes East Carolina | Conference USA | Marshall
 Social Media @ECUSoftball   | Facebook | YouTube

GREENVILLE, N.C. - The East Carolina softball team returns home and completes the regular season this weekend with a three-game series against UCF. ECU plays a doubleheader against the Knights beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday and finishes the series and the regular season with noon game on Sunday. The Pirates have won seven of the last nine conference games and enter the weekend with an overall record of 21-27 (11-9 C-USA). The program will honor its two seniors, Kai Clark and Cicely Lopez, in a pre-game ceremony prior to the Sunday contest.

Live stats and video will be available for all three conference games. Live in-game updates for the contests can also be accessed through the ECU Softball Twitter feed (@ECUSoftball).

Scouting The Knights
UCF (26-24, 7-14 C-USA), even after a loss to USM last time out on April 21, have won three of the last four games ... The Knights also have four wins over power conference opponents this season (South Carolina, Indiana, Villanova and Ole Miss) ... Farrah Sullivan has been the team's best hitter with her 35 hits, six home runs and 23 RBI ... Kalyn Cenal is second on the team with her 20 RBI ... Jasmine Acevedo has the team's highest batting average (.271) and is tied for the squad lead with eight doubles along with Mariah Garcia ... Three different members of the team have reached double figures in stolen bases led by Kahley Novak's 29 ... Novak is 22nd nationally in stolen bases ... Maddy Schroeder has 18 steals and Lauren Aldridge has recorded 17 thefts on the season ... The Knights are second in the conference and are placed ninth nationally in stolen bases per game (2.04) ... Shelby Turner leads the squad in wins (13) and ERA (2.40) in her 128.1 innings thrown ... Mackenzie Audas has totaled 204 strikeouts in 185 innings pitched with 17 complete games and a 2.65 ERA ... She is also 17th nationally with her four saves ... The head coach of the Knights is Renee Luers-Gillispie ... Luers-Gillispie is in her 12th season in charge of the program and has a record of 428-308-1 during her time in Orlando ... She led the program to its fourth berth in the NCAA Tournament last season ... East Carolina leads the all-time series with the Knights by a 17-7 margin, but have lost five of the last six games in the series.

Career Numbers vs. UCF
Junior Jordan Lewis has been the team's best hitter against the Knights with her .286 batting average and four hits ... Fellow junior Jill Jelnick also has four career hits plus a triple against UCF ... Alex Fieldhouse has a pair of career doubles against the Knights.

On This Date (The Weekend Edition)
ECU is 7-2 all-time on the dates from May 4-5 ... The Pirates are 2-1 on May 4 and last took on UAB on the date in 2008 ... East Carolina is 5-1 on May 5 and defeated Memphis twice last season.

Last Time Out
The Pirates fell in both games on Saturday, April 27, to Southern Miss by scores of 1-0 and 4-2, before the Sunday contest was rained out ... Sophomore Courtney Smith started both ends of the doubleheader in the circle and limited the Golden Eagles to five runs (three earned) in taking a pair of losses ... ECU's offense only had three hits in the first contest and saw USM's offense score the game's only run in the sixth inning ... In the second game, USM took a 1-0 lead on an error in the first inning ... The Pirates fought back to take the lead on a double from Kristi Oshiro and a sacrifice fly from Jordan Lewis in the third inning, only to see the Golden Eagles score single tallies in fourth, fifth and sixth innings to win by a 4-2 margin ... Junior Jill Jelnick had a pair of hits in the loss for East Carolina.



Jelnick Named First Team Academic All-District
Junior outfielder Jill Jelnick has been named to the Capital One Academic All-District 3 First Team, according to an announcement by the organization this week ... She holds a 4.00 cumulative grade-point average as an English education major and earned the accolade for the second time in her career ... Due to the first-team nod, Jelnick advances to the Capital One Academic All-America Team ballot, where first, second and third-team All-America honorees will be chosen later this month ... The Academic All-District ® teams include student-athletes from the eight geographic districts across the Unites States and Canada ... Jelnick is a three-time recipient of the Conference USA Commissioner's Academic Medal (3.75+ GPA) and has also been named to the C-USA Commissioner's Honor Roll (3.0+ GPA) in each of her first three years ... In her first five semesters at East Carolina, she has also earned a place on the school's Chancellor's List (4.0 GPA).

Nice Little Run
East Carolina put together a winning streak of seven-straight conference games from April 7-21 ... The streak was tied for the fifth-longest in school history and the longest since the team also won seven straight C-USA games between the end of the 2010 season and the start of the 2011 season ... Only once has the program had a conference winning streak reach double digits and that was the team's 11 straight league victories during the 1998 season when ECU was in the Big South Conference.

The Rifle Woman
Freshman Meredith Mitchell, after throwing out a runner on the road against Southern Miss (4/27), has already totaled eight outfield assists this season including nailing six runners at the plate trying to score from center field ... Mitchell has also recorded an outfield assist in six of the last seven series ... Her eight outfield assists are second in the conference for the individual lead ... ECU outfielders have recorded 16 assists this season, which leads the conference, with Jasmine Robbins, Jill Jelnick and Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin all recording multiple assists on the campaign.

Only Once Before
The Pirates have a conference record of 11-9 this year after 20 league games for only the second time (2007) since joining Conference USA in 2002 ...  ECU has been .500 or better at this point six times since joining the league (15-5 in 2005, 11-9 in 2007, 16-4 in 2009, 15-5 in 2010, 13-7 in 2011 and 11-9 in 2013).

On A Streak
After recording a hit in the first game against Southern Miss, Jordan Lewis has now reached base safely in 38 of her last 43 games and is hitting .333 (37-for-111) with an on-base percentage of .485 plus seven home runs and 26 RBI in that time ... In her recently completed 21-game on-base streak from March 16-April 20, she hit .385 (20-for-52) with five home runs, 15 RBI, 19 walks and an on-base streak of .549.

Sneaky Fast
Jordan Lewis is 12-for-13 in stolen base attempts this season and has only been thrown out three times in 32 career attempts.

Individual Conference Leaders
The Pirates, midway through the 13th week of softball action, have several players that are ranked highly in Conference USA ... Junior Kristi Oshiro is tied for the conference lead in triples (5) ... She is tied for fourth in doubles (12), fifth in runs scored (39), tied for fifth in sacrifice bunts (9), seventh in slugging percentage (.552) and on-base percentage (.454), tied for eighth in total bases (74), ninth in batting average (.343), tied for ninth in walks (23) plus tied for 10th in hit by pitch ... Junior Alex Fieldhouse leads the conference in sacrifice flies (3) and is tied for the doubles lead (13) ... She is third in slugging percentage (.599), fifth in total bases (85), tied for fifth in runs batted in (39), tied for eighth in triples (2) plus tied for ninth in home runs (7)  ... Junior Jordan Lewis is tied for third in walks (27), fourth in slugging percentage (.573), tied for fifth in sacrifice flies (2), sixth in on-base percentage (455), tied for eighth in triples (2), tied for ninth in home runs (7) plus tied for 10th in stolen bases (12) and runs batted in (28) ... Junior Jill Jelnick is tied for the league lead in sacrifice flies (3) and tied for eighth in triples (2) ... Freshman Kelsi Briggs is tied for fifth in sacrifice flies (2) ... Sophomore Sarah Christian is tied for fourth in wins (15) and appearances (35), fifth in innings pitched (169.0), tied for fifth in games started (25), tied for seventh in games in relief (10), ninth in strikeouts (104) and tied for ninth in saves (1) ... Fellow sophomore Courtney Smith is tied for ninth in games started (19) and appearances (27)

The Last Meeting
East Carolina3
April 1, 2012
Orlando, Fla.
Pirates Swept By UCF, Falling 4-3 Sunday
Box Score | Live Chat Replay
A two-run first inning combined with two hits, including a home run, two runs scored, and a game-saving defensive play by Natalie Land led UCF to a 4-3 victory over East Carolina on Sunday as the Knights (26-10, 6-3 C-USA) completed the series sweep.

Team Conference Leaders
ECU, as a team, lead the conference in triples (13) and sacrifice flies (15) ... The program is also third in doubles (54), total bases (492) and runs batted in (166) ... The Pirates are also fourth in runs scored (192), hits (325) and slugging percentage (.401) ... East Carolina is fifth in home runs (29) and on-base percentage (.336) plus sixth in stolen bases (44) and sacrifice bunts (29)

NCAA Leaders
Kristi Oshiro ranks among the NCAA leaders in several categories in the seventh release of statistics this week (4/30) ... Oshiro is 12th in triples (5.0), 21st in triples per game (0.10), 75th in toughest to strikeout (16.3), 129th in doubles per game (0.25) and 138th in runs per game (0.82) ... Alex Fieldhouse also finds herself among the NCAA leaders in sacrifice flies (3.0 - 52nd) ... She is also 96th in doubles per game (0.27) ... Jordan Lewis is 132nd in walks (0.56) ... Jill Jelnick is 52nd in sacrifice flies (3.0) and 89th in toughest to strikeout (15.8) ... In the circle, Sarah Christian is 97th in victories (15.0) and 127th in walks per seven innings (2.11).
Need To Keep Them Scoreless in the First
Against UTEP (3/29), the Pirates picked up their first win of the season when the opponent scores in the opening inning and are now 1-16 when that happens this year ... After the comeback win against Memphis (4/20), ECU is 3-23 when its opponent crosses home first ... East Carolina is 16-3 on the season though when holding opponents to two runs or less in any game and 13-4 themselves when the scoring in the first frame.

Home, Sweet Home
ECU has a 12-15 record in home games this season ... Junior Jordan Lewis has led the charge with her .347 batting average (25-for-72) ... She also has three home runs and 14 RBI ... Junior Kristi Oshiro is close behind with a .338 batting average (25-for-74), eight doubles and four triples ... Fellow junior Alex Fieldhouse has also stood out at home with her .338 batting average (25-for-74) with four home runs and 17 RBI ... Sophomore Sarah Christian has nine of the team's wins with a 2.98 ERA in 94.0 innings thrown ... ECU has a team batting average of .271 at home and a team ERA of 3.46.
Up Next
Next, East Carolina heads to the annual conference tournament ... The Pirates will go in as either the fourth or fifth seed and take on Marshall ... The single-elimination tournament determines the league's automatic qualifier for the NCAA Tournament and is hosted by Tulsa from May 9-11 at the Collins Family Softball Complex.