May 20, 2010


Division II Softball Super Regionals Hub

By Amy Farnum

California (Pa.) at Bloomsburg

The Vulcans and Huskies will meet in a rematch of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference championship. The Huskies, who beat the Vulcans 3-2 on April 30, rallied to come from behind for a 7-5 victory to claim the league title on May 1. Bloomsburg senior third baseman Nikki Shiko is batting .410 with 41 RBI, and has posted a .525 with six RBI during the postseason. In the circle, Shavaun Fisher leads the Huskies with a 32-5 record and 1.05 ERA, along with 276 strikeouts in 247 innings. Amanda Wallace paces Cal with a .406 batting average, while Danielle Easton has contributed nine homers and 47 RBI. Senior Lauren Shaheen compiled a 19-4 mark and 1.39 ERA, second in the league, to earn PSAC West Pitcher of the Year honors. Bloomsburg head coach Jan Hutchinson is retiring after the season. She is the NCAA Division II all-time leader in career wins, and has led the Huskies to an NCAA record 28 straight appearances in the Division II Championship.

Wayne State (Neb.) at Metro State

Wayne State heads to Colorado on a 16-game winning streak after advancing to the NCAA Super Regionals for the first time in school history. Metro State is also making its first NCAA Super Regional appearance in only the third season of play since the program was reinstated. Junior Katie Goetzinger leads the Wildcats with a 32-8 record, a 0.95 ERA and .158 opponent batting average, and was selected to the All-Central Region First Team earlier this week. Goetzinger will face a potent offensive squad in the Roadrunners - a team that has already set the Division II single-season record for home runs (107). Tara Mickelson tops the squad and nation with 22 round-trippers. The Roadrunners also lead the nation in slugging percentage (.640), and are second in scoring with 8.19 runs per game.

Molloy at New Haven

After receiving its first-ever berth in the NCAA Championships, sixth-seeded Molloy defeated host Dowling twice to advance to the Super Regional round against New Haven, the regular season champion of the Northeast 10 Conference. Molloy is led by freshman outfielder Jeana Frey, who is batting .407with 21 RBI and nine stolen bases, and was named to the All-East Region First Team. The Chargers set a program record with 41 victories behind the stellar pitching of Breanne Gleason (36-5, 1.30 ERA, 320 K in 259.0 IP).

Ashland at Wayne State (Mich.)

WSU senior pitcher Casey Hanes tops the nation with an incredible 0.54 ERA, and has compiled a 40-6 mark while striking out 340 batters in 300 innings of work. Hanes, who was named the All-Midwest Region Pitcher of the Year has tossed 18 shutouts. The Eagles will counter with their top pitcher, Emlyn Knerem, who ranks second in the nation with a 0.80 ERA and is fourth with 10.1 strikeouts per seven innings. The two teams have met four times this season, splitting the series.

Arkansas-Monticello at Valdosta State

A battle of two of the top teams in the Gulf South Conference, the series will feature both the league's East and West Pitchers and Players of the Year. VSU's Alyssa Shirley boasts a .479 batting average with 20 homers and 57 RBI, while UAM senior catcher Becca Tipton sports a .471 batting average with 14 home runs. In the circle, VSU's Holly Satterfield is 25-2 with a 1.30 ERA, while sophomore hurler Kayla Jackson is 30-6 with a 1.35 ERA, and is coming off a no-hitter against Alabama-Huntsville in regional action. The Blazers and Cotton Blossoms have met twice this season with VSU taking both games.

South Central
Angelo State at Midwestern State

MSU senior Katie Petersen will showcase her pitching talents against Angelo State this weekend after picking up All-South Central Pitcher of the Year honors for putting together a 25-4 record and a program-best 1.05 ERA this season. She has tossed 21 complete games, six shutouts and two perfect games this year. Angelo State with counter with a .325 team batting average, led by Alix Dean and Kaycee Taylor, who are each batting over .400. The two squads have met five times this year with MSU winning three. The last three games have reached extra innings including an ASU 1-0 eight-inning victory at the Lone Star Conference Championship.

Lenoir-Rhyne at North Georgia

North Georgia enters the weekend as the only unbeaten team in the nation with a 48-0 record as the Saints have an eye on the longest winning streak in NCAA softball history of 55 games. Junior right-hander Sarah Phillips provides the pitching for the Saints, and is 41-0 with a 0.81 ERA on the year. Lenoir-Rhyne has won 16 of its last 17 contests, including a sweep in regional action as the Bears outscored their opponents 27-5. The Bears are led offensively by Kat Rivers, who boasts a .438 batting average, nation-leading 22 homers and 62 RBI.

Cal State Chico at Hawaii-Pacific

The Wildcats swept through regional play behind the pitching of freshman right-hander Kacie McCarthy, who won all three contests while lowering her season ERA to 1.92. Chico State, just one of two of 16 teams remaining that are not ranked in the NFCA Division II Top 25, is looking to land its first Division II Championship Series appearance since 2002. HPU is sparked by senior right-hander Maile Kim, the All-Pac West Pitcher of the Year, who has compiled a 28-2 record and 0.90 ERA on the year. The two teams have not met this season, but the Sea Warriors lead the series 6-2.