UC SAN DIEGO VITALS
CCAA Standing: 7th
The Tritons take a trip to Northern California for ten games in six days. On Tuesday and Wednesday, UCSD will play Sonoma State in a four-game California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) series. The games were rescheduled due to weather from Sunday, March 26 and Monday, March 27. The Tritons will then play six games as part of the Tournament of Champions, presented by the City of Turlock and hosted by Stanislaus State. UCSD will face Montana State Billings and Western Oregon on Friday, Northwest Nazarene and Western Washington on Saturday and Concordia (Ore.) and Simon Fraser on Sunday.
The Tritons were swept in a four-game CCAA series against Cal State Monterey Bay. UCSD could not get much going on the offensive end and was shutout in the first three games by scores of 1-0, 3-0 and 8-0. The Otters' Rosalia Keirns only gave up one hit in the second game. The Tritons led the series finale 5-1 through four innings but surrendered eight runs in the remaining three innings to suffer a 9-5 defeat.
UCSD fell out of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) poll after dropping its series with Cal State East Bay. The Tritons were rated as high as 14th and started the year outside the top-25. To view the complete rankings, click here.
CCAA STANDINGS (3/27)
1. Cal State Monterey Bay 16-4, 22-5
2. Sonoma State 16-4, 21-6
3. Humboldt State 14-4, 21-4
4. Chico State 13-5, 18-5
5. Cal State San Bernandino 13-9, 18-12
6. Cal State East Bay 14-12, 18-12
7. UC San Diego 9-11, 14-12
8. San Francisco State 11-15, 12-18
9. Stanislaus State 8-16, 12-18
10. Cal State San Marcos 6-18, 7-22
11. Cal State Dominguez Hills 2-24, 5-28
UCSD leads the conference in sacrifice flies (14). The Tritons are second in base on balls (89) and stolen bases (58).
STATISTICALLY SPEAKING IN THE CCAA
Team (All games, in top 3)
1. Sacrifice flies (14)
2. Base on balls (89)
2. Stolen bases (58)
3. Triples (5)
3. Saves (3)
Individual (all games, in top 5)
1. Kelsi Maday, sacrifice flies (3)
1. Danica Kazakoff, sacrifice hits (11)
2. Kelsi Maday, stolen bases (22)
3. Kelsi Maday, doubles (8)
3. Kendall Baker, stolen bases (17)
3. Kendall Baker, triples (3)
5. Ashley Chestnut, base on balls (16)
STATISTICALLY SPEAKING IN THE NCAA
Team (all games, in top 50)
16. Stolen bases per game (2.23)
The Tritons currently lead the CCAA in several "small ball" categories. UCSD tops the league in sacrifice flies (14). UCSD is second in stolen bases with (58) and base on balls (89). Indivdually, Kelsi Maday leads the conference in sacrifice flies (3). Danica Kazakoff tops the CCAA in sacrifice hits and is 10th in the nation with 11.
MADAY AND CASILLAS SWEEP CCAA WEEKLY HONORS
Junior outfielder Kelsi Maday and senior left-handed pitcher Milana Casillas earned CCAA Player and Pitcher of the week, respectively, for the week of Feb. 21-28. Maday helped 17th-ranked UC San Diego split a doubleheader with Azusa Pacific to improve to a 9-1 record overall. The Napa product finished the day with two RBI, two sacrifice hits, and one run. In game one, the Tritons trailed 3-1 in the bottom of the seventh before Maday hit a two-run single to knot the game, 3-3. Maday also scored the game-winning run after sophomore Caitlin Weisner drew the walk-off walk to seal the 4-3 victory. Casillas saw two relief appearances, pitched 7.4 innings and earned her fourth win of the season. The Venice product did not allow a hit or a walk in 1.2 innings of action to secure the 4-3 win in game one. In the 12-inning nightcap, Casillas pitched 6.2 innings in relief allowing two earned runs, three hits and two walks. She collected one strikeout and was credited with her first loss of the season. This marks Maday's second time receiving the weekly honor. Casillas earned the weekly honor for the first time in her career.
LAUREN BROWN NAMED CCAA PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Lauren Brown was named the CCAA Pitcher of the Week for the week of Feb. 14-21. Brown helped UC San Diego sweep Cal State San Marcos in a four-game series to open CCAA play with a perfect 4-0 record. After the weekend, UCSD also moved to 8-0 on the season. The San Diego product started two games on the mound for the Tritons, she pitched 13 innings including one complete game and picked up two wins in the process. Brown only gave up two earned runs, one walk and eight hits. On Friday against CSUSM, she pitched all seven innings, tallied five strikeouts and only allowed three hits as UCSD won 5-1. This marks Brown's second time receiving the weekly honor, she earned it once last season (for the week of Feb. 9).
ABOUT THE SEAWOLVES
Sonoma State comes in at 21-6 overall and second in the CCAA with a 15-5 conference record. Karly Macadangdang leads the team in batting average at .361 and runs with 24. Sarah Langley has 18 RBI and six doubles. Jordann White is SSU's hits and home runs leader with 30 and six, respectively. Brielle Vidmar is the Seawolves' ace with an 8-2 record and 2.84 ERA. Jennifer Bridges is in her eighth season as head coach.
UCSD holds a 44-28 advantage over SSU in the all-time series. The four-game regular season series was won by the Tritons, 3-1, last season. The Seawolves took the first game 3-1 before UCSD came back to win three straight games by scores of 3-2, 3-2 and 2-1.
ABOUT THE YELLOWJACKETS
MSU Billings is 12-19 overall and fourth in the GNAC with an 8-8 record. The Yellowjackets are fifth in the nation in home runs with 36 and average 1.24 home runs per game. Heather Tracey leads the team and the GNAC with 52 hits on the season, good for fifth nationally. Cameron Cassinelli is sixth in the nation with 10 home runs and eighth in RBI (37). Jessica Rayman is in her first season as head coach.
The Tritons hold a 5-1 advantage in the all-time series. UCSD and MSU Billings met at last year's edition of the Tournament of Champions with the Tritons winning, 5-4. UCSD came from behind to score two runs in the top of the seventh to secure the win.
ABOUT THE WOLVES
Western Oregon sits at 10-11 on the season and 1-5 in the GNAC. The Wolves rank 21st in nation in runs per game with 6.47. Seven Western Oregon players are hitting above .300 on the season. Kelsie Gardner leads the team with a .442 batting average, 25 runs, 34 hits and nine stolen bases. Destiny Kuehl has four home runs and 22 RBI. Western Oregon head coach in his fourth year is Lonny Sargent.
The Tritons are 16-4 against the Wolves in the all-time series. UCSD and Western Oregon met twice last season in La Jolla with the Tritons earning wins in both game by scores of 6-0 and 3-2.
ABOUT THE CRUSADERS
Northwest Nazarene enters the Tournament of Champions with a 14-15 record. Kylie Orr and Brittany Genuardi have .394 and .389 batting averages, respectively. They both have 37 hits and 27 RBI each. Orr leads the team with seven home runs and 10 doubles. In the circle, Brooke Bonsen is the Crusaders' ace with an 8-7 record and 4.37 ERA. She has 32 strikeouts. Rich Wagner is in his second season as head coach.
UCSD has a perfect 5-0 record over the Crusaders all-time. The Tritons came from behind to earn an 8-5 victory over NNU in last year's Tournament of Champions.
ABOUT THE VIKINGS
Western Washington comes in at 12-19 overall and 8-8 in the GNAC. Emily Benson hits .509 with 22 runs, three doubles, one triple, eight home runs and 26 RBI. she ranks third in nation in slugging percentage (1.057) and on-base percentage (.629). Anna Kasner is the Vikings' ace with a 6-3 record, 3.00 ERA and 86 strikeouts. Amy Suiter is in her seventh season as head coach.
The Vikings lead the Tritons 6-1 in the all-time series. In last year's Tournament of Champions, WWU slipped by with a 5-4 win. The Vikings used a four-run fourth inning as the Tritons came up one run short.
ABOUT THE CAVALIERS
Concordia comes into the tournament with a 12-17 overall record. The Cavaliers have a .303 batting average as a team with 21 home runs. Individually, Meghan Luebbert has a .500 batting average with 32 runs, 45 hits, five home runs and nine stolen bases. Courtney Sommers leads the team with 33 RBI and six home runs. Shelley Whitaker is in her first season as head coach.
The Tritons and Cavaliers have only met once, at last year's Tournament of Champions. UCSD scored five runs in the fifth inning to break a 2-2 stalemate and defeat Concordia 7-3. With the win, the Tritons hold a 1-0 advantage in the all-time series.
ABOUT THE CLAN
The Clan enters the tournament with a 7-13 record on the season. As a team, Simon Fraser has tallied 11 home runs, 78 RBI and 28 doubles. Taylor Lundrigan leads the Clan with a .456 batting average, 31 hits, seven doubles, 18 RBI and six home runs. Tori Belton has a 4-6 record in the cirlce with a 4.57 ERA, two saves and 32 strikeouts. Head coach Mike Renney is in his 21st season at the helm.
Sunday's game will be the first meeting between UCSD and Simon Fraser.
WHO’S BACK. WHO’S NOT
UC San Diego is coming off a 37-21 overall season and finished fourth in the CCAA with a 23-15 record. The Tritons won the CCAA Tournament with a 3-0 swept and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA West Regionals, where they fell to Central Washington in the second elimination game.
Head coach Patti Gerckens, in her milestone 25th season, welcomes back three all-conference players, and two All-West Region honorees, including the CCAA Freshman of the Year, Maddy Lewis. Lewis, a first team all-conference and second team all-region selection, will return for her sophomore year as an infielder for the Tritons. The Alameda product finished sixth in the CCAA in batting average (.367), with 47 hits, 33 RBI and 16 stolen bases. She also led the conference in sacrifice flies (5) and played in 49 games. First team All-CCAA and second team All-Region honoree, Kelsi Maday, will enter her junior year after starting all 58 games in the outfield last season. In 2016, Maday set a single-season school record with 37 stolen bases and tied a single-season Triton record with 54 runs. The Napa product also finished with a .368 batting average, 40 RBI and 64 hits. Junior Lauren Sanders also returns after finishing the season as an All-CCAA second team selection. Sanders finished the season with 37 RBI and 17 stolen bases.
The Tritons lost Lexi Edwards, a three-time All-CCAA pitcher. Edwards capped her senior season after starting 26 games, with a 1.96 ERA, 16-9 record and 80 strikeouts. She also paced the CCAA in saves with eight. UCSD also lost key players in Taylor Abeyta (52 hits, 18 RBI, 17 stolen bases) and Emma Schneider (29 hits, 11 doubles, 13 runs, 21 RBI).
Since 2006, UCSD is 8-3 in season openers and 7-4 in home openers ... Last season, the Tritons opened 9-1, including 8-0 at home ... Lauren Brown is the returning leader in the pitching staff in wins (12), innings pitched (105.2) and strikeouts (56) ... Milana Casillas returns as the leader in ERA (1.74) and opposing batting average (.292) ... Kelsi Maday was UCSD’s best hitter last season, topping the roster in batting average (.368), runs (54), doubles (12), RBI (40), slugging percentage (.552) and homeruns (6) ... Maday was also the top base stealer in 2016, swiping 37 bags ... In the field, Lauren Sanders posted a team-high 237 putouts in 2015 ... Maddy Lewis will be the returning leader in assists after totaling 109 last season and triples (4) ... Rachel Phillips returns after posting the highest fielding percentage (.992) in 2016 ... Maday sits on the individual career top-ten in several categories including batting average (.345), homeruns (10) and steals (52) … Lewis currently sits sixth on the career all-time list with a .356 batting average.
GET TO KNOW THE 2017 TRITONS
The Tritons welcome seven newcomers to the 2017 squad ... UCSD has 16 California natives on its roster, with Kendall Baker (Berthoud, Colo.) and freshman Alanna Phillips (Utica, N.Y.) being the only players out of state ... The Tritons have two local products on the roster: Mikaila Reyes (San Diego/Torrey Pines HS) and Lauren Brown (San Diego/Academy of Our Lady of Peace) ... To check out the roster and read about the Tritons, click here.
KALABA, SILVA AND MITCHELL ADDED TO COACHING STAFF
UCSD has added Carissa Kalaba, Liz Silva and Carly Mitchell as the newest members to its coaching staff. Kalaba has 10 years of head coaching experience and was most recently the head coach of Utah State from 2009-13, where she coached one All-American and seven all-conference players. Prior to Utah State, Kalaba was the head coach at Biola University from 2004-09, where she compiled a 143-94 record as the all-time winningest coach in program history. She played softball collegiately at UCLA, helping the team win the 1999 NCAA and Pac-10 titles, as well as served as an undergraduate assistant coach for the Bruins in 2000.
Silva arrives in La Jolla after spending two years as the assistant coach (2015) and head coach (2016) of the varsity softball team at Hilltop High School in Chula Vista. She guided her team to two Metro-Pacific League titles and a semifinal berth in the CIF Division III Championship. She played softball collegiately for Oklahoma State, primarily as a catcher and second baseman for the Cowgirls. She was an All-Big XII selection and a member of the 1998 Oklahoma State team that finished third in the Women’s College World Series. Mitchell played softball at Cal State Dominguez Hills from 2014-15, after transferring from San Diego Mesa College.
HEAD COACH PATTI GERCKENS
Patti Gerckens is in her milestone 25th season in charge of the UC San Diego softball program. She has amassed an overall record of 655-545 (.546) over her 24-year career, with eight straight 30-win seasons among 11 total, including 2016’s 37 wins. The Tritons have gone 511-381 (.573) in 16 years since Gerckens guided the team’s transition from Division III to Division II in 2001, including 307-224 (.578) as a member of the ultra-competitive CCAA, widely considered the best Division II conference in the country. The winningest coach in program history, Gerckens led the Tritons to four straight NCAA postseason berths from 2011-14, beginning with back-to-back school-record 45-win seasons and appearances in the Division II championship game, the first of which brought UCSD its first softball title in 2011. The Tritons finished as national runners-up in her 20th campaign in 2012. Gerckens has led UCSD to 11 NCAA postseason appearances, with nine at the Division II level. UCSD is 22-18 (.55) in the NCAA Division II Championship. A native of Old Tappan, N.J., Gerckens graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1989 with a bachelor’s degree in health and physical education. She was a four-year starter at second base for the Tar Heels and also played for the New Jersey Blue Jays of the Amateur Softball Association for nine years, winning a championship in 1992.
2017 CCAA PRESEASON POLL
The Tritons were picked to finish third in the CCAA based on a preseason poll of the league’s coaches. Last season, UCSD won the CCAA Tournament and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA West Regional. Humboldt State was picked to repeat as the league champion after finishing as the 2016 national runner-up.
2017 CCAA SOFTBALL PRESEASON COACHES’ POLL
1. Humboldt State, 99 points (9 first-place votes)
2. Chico State, 87 (2)
3. UC San Diego, 80
4. Sonoma State, 74
5. Cal State San Bernardino, 62
6. San Francisco State, 54
7. Cal State Monterey Bay, 45
8. Stanislaus State, 38
9. Cal State East Bay, 34
10. Cal State Dominguez Hills, 19
11. Cal State San Marcos, 13
For the latest in Triton athletic gear, make sure to visit ucsdtritonsgear.com. Run by UCSD Athletics' online partner, Advanced-Online, the site provides an on-demand option for Triton athletic apparel and merchandise. Fans have access to over 600 products that can be processed and shipped within 24 hours.
FOR THE YOUNGER CROWD
Got some young Triton fans in your family? If they are eighth grade or under, check out the Junior Triton Club. Membership includes a free t-shirt, admission to over 100 UC San Diego home athletic events, and much more!
After making its first appearance during the Spring 2016 NCAA Division I Referendum campaign, the slogan “All For One” stays front and center as UC San Diego Athletics continues its journey to become a full-fledged member of NCAA Division I. The phrase also speaks to the long-standing culture of unity among the 23 Triton intercollegiate teams as well as the commitment to the University’s principles of diversity and inclusion. When the topic is UC San Diego Athletics, Triton fans can join the conversation by using the hashtag #AllForOne.
SOCIAL MEDIA- #AllForOne
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The Tritons return home to host Humboldt State for a four-game CCAA series April 7-8 at Triton Softball Field. Friday's doubleheader is set to start at 1:00 p.m. The first of two games on Saturday will begin at 11:00 a.m.