PISCATAWAY, N.J. (April 25, 2014) – Following its first American Athletic Conference series win of the season last weekend against Memphis, the Rutgers softball team continues its eight-game homestand with another conference series against longtime league rival UConn. First pitch of the series-opening doubleheader is scheduled for noon Saturday, April 26.
The Scarlet Knights (22-16, 5-7 American) and Huskies (13-31, 3-12American) will close the three-game set at noon on Sunday, April 27. That contest will be broadcast live on RVision, presented by AT&T, with Danny Breslauer on the call.
RU’s Saturday doubleheader with UConn will be the squad’s Blackout Game. The first 200 fans to arrive at the RU Softball Complex will receive black Rutgers t-shirts.
The program will also celebrate “Senior Day,” as the squad will say goodbye to seniors Alexis Durando (Oakland, N.J.), Loren Williams (Los Angeles, Calif.) and Emma Woo (Santa Monica, Calif.) prior to the start of the doubleheader.
RVision: Game Three
Rutgers Quick Hits
The Scarlet Knights topped St. John’s, 13-3, in five innings on Wednesday at the RU Softball Complex, using the first career home runs from sophomores Stephanie Huang (Paramus, N.J.) and Melanie Slowinski (Severn, Md.) in an eight-run fourth inning. It was the fifth time RU cut a game short this season.
Junior Chandler Howard (Wilmington, Del.) continued her dominant junior campaign at the plate last week, earning the American Athletic Conference Player of the Week Award. Howard went 6-for-12 in three games played against Memphis, blasting two home runs and recording five RBIs. Her eight homers are tied for third in the league this season and tie for third among RU softball individuals in the last 10 years. Huang was named to the conference Honor Roll, going 6-for-10 with a double, two RBIs and two runs against the Tigers
Junior center fielder Jackie Bates (Lincroft, N.J.) leads the American Athletic Conference with a .407 batting average, is second with 14 doubles and 35 RBIs and is third with a .678 slugging percentage. Bates’ 0.38 doubles averaged per game is the 11th-best mark in the country (as of April 21). In 38 games this season, Bates has notched 48 hits, one more than she did in 56 contests in 2013. Her 35 RBIs this year also tie her mark set last season in 56 games. She owns a 21-game reached base steak entering the series, the second-best mark on the team this season.
The Scarlet Knights’ .306 batting average is the best mark over the last 10 seasons, while the squad’s .437 slugging percentage and .376 on-base percentage are the second-best program marks since 2004. RU leads the American in batting average and is second in slugging, with three players in the top-10 in batting average.
UConn continues its longtime rivalry with Rutgers this weekend, as the Huskies look to stay hot after picking up a pair of midweek wins over Bryant (10-2) on April 22 and UMass (4-2) on April 24. The Huskies seek their second American Athletic Conference win of the season after taking two games from Memphis on March 29 in Storrs, Conn.
Leading UConn at the plate this season is sophomore Valerie Sadowl with a .349 batting average, nine doubles, six home runs and a .604 slugging percentage. Sophomore Heather Fyfe (.306) is the only other Husky hitting above .300, while senior Audrey Grinnell leads the charge with 23 RBIs.
Junior right-hander Lauren Duggan has assumed a brunt of the pitching duties this season, tossing 138.1 of the staff’s 273.0 innings and starting in 22 of the squad’s 44 contests. She is 7-18 in 30 appearances with a 4.66 ERA and 12 complete games.
Rutgers has won three of the last four games against the Huskies after taking two of three games from UConn last season from March 29-30 at the RU Softball Complex. After falling, 4-0, in the series-opener, the Scarlet Knights picked up a 10-2 win and closed out with a 6-0 victory in the series finale.
Rutgers junior left-hander Alyssa Landrith (Vacaville, Calif.) tossed a complete game shutout of the Huskies, striking out eight and allowing just three hits.
UConn leads the all-time series, 44-26-2.
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