UCSB Returns to Big West Action

Keilani Jennings (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Keilani Jennings (Photo by Tony Mastres)

• The Schedule
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
UC Santa Barbara (21-15) at Cal Poly (16-22-1), 12:00 pm
All-time series record vs. Mustangs: 46-48
Last time vs. Mustangs: W, 8-0 (6) (May 6, 2012)
Streak: Won 6

UC Santa Barbara at Cal Poly, 2:00 pm

Saturday, April 13, 2013
UC Santa Barbara (21-13) vs UC Davis (15-18), 12:00 pm
All-time series record vs. Aggies: 18-6
Last time vs. Aggies: W, 2-1 (Apr. 29, 2012)
Streak: Won 1

UC Santa Barbara vs UC Davis 2:00 pm

Sunday, April 7, 2013
UC Santa Barbara vs UC Davis, 12:00 pm

• Back to the Big West
Last week, the UCSB softball team dropped both their games in mercy rule finishes at the University of Arizona. Aside from the Gauchos' Apr. 24th matchup at UCLA, UCSB's will only be playing Big West teams for the rest of the regular season.

• For The Record
UCSB enters this weekend with a 21-15 record and are entering the week tied with UC Davis for 5th place in the Big West.

• Conference Struggles
Through their first two conference series, UCSB's 2-4 record is the program's worst since the 2010 season when the Gauchos stumbled to a 0-6 start in conference play.

• Batter Up!
UCSB ranks fourth in the Big West in team batting average (.270), third in slugging percentage (.387) and fourth in hits (255). Long Beach State ranks number one in both batting average (.288) and hits (312), while Hawaii has the top slugging percentage in the conference at .496.

• Phenomenal Freshman
While only a freshman, Arianna Palomares has made an immediate impact at UCSB by becoming the team's top hitter. She paces the team with a .333 batting average (5th in the Big West), and is second on the team with 38 hits. She has also hit nine doubles this season, which ties her with teammate Shelby Wisdom for fifth place in the Big West.

• Dual Threat
In addition to being the Gauchos' ace, Shelby Wisdom has also been improving her play at the plate. She currently leads the Gauchos and is third in the Big West for RBIs with 32. The sophomore is also third on the Gauchos with 35 hits. She only trails Keilani Jennings for the team's highest slugging percentage at .554. Wisdom has also garnered the most bases on the team with 62, which places her in ninth place in the Big West.  

• Sensational Soria
As a senior, Jessica Soria has led UCSB by being one of the most productive leadoff batters in the Big West. She leads the Gauchos with 40 hits, good for third in the conference. Soria is second in the Big West with 39 runs scored, and is tied for the most stolen bases with 19 off 21 attempts.
The player she is tied with for steals (UC Riverside's Ariel Shore) has been caught stealing five times, making Soria the more efficient stealer.

• Gaucho Slugger
Gaucho senior Keilani Jennings sports the biggest bat on the UCSB lineup. UCSB's starting shortstop leads the team with a .604 slugging percentage and seven homeruns. Her 26 RBIs also rank seventh in the Big West. Jennings' power has earned her the respect of opposing pitchers as she has been walked 19 times, tied for the sixth most in the conference. In the Gauchos' most recent Big West game before this week's action, the senior hit the game winning homerun on Mar. 30th against the Pacific Tigers to put UCSB ahead in the top of the 10th inning.

• In the Circle
Shelby Wisdom has been the Gauchos go-to pitcher this season and has racked up the third most wins in the Big West with 12 and is ninth in ERA with a 2.85 mark. Opposing teams only have a .253 batting average against her, eighth best among Big West pitchers. She is also fifth in the conference with 101 strikeouts through 125.1 innings of work. Of those punch outs, 28 of them have caught the batter looking, which is the fifth most in the Big West. Though Alex Pingree is only a freshman, she already has made an impact in UCSB's pitching rotation. She leads the club and is eighth in the conference with a 2.73 ERA. The freshman is also second among Big West pitchers in earned runs allowed with 22 and is fourth in hits allowed with 63. As a collective pitching staff, the Gauchos have garnered a total of 21 wins, good for fourth in the conference rankings.

• Going Beyond the Game
The UCSB Softball team will be wearing a special Teal Ribbon during the month of April to bring attention to Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). SAAM is a national event and the UCSB campus will be hosting a number of events in support of the cause. For the remainder of the month at all home events, the Gauchos will wear a unique patch on their uniforms while coaches and staff will wear a special lapel pin. The Gaucho Ribbon pin has become a symbol of support for a number of causes, including the notable Pink efforts to bring awareness and support in the fight against cancer.

• The Galicinao File
Head coach Brie Galicinao, who is now in her sixth season at the helm of the UCSB softball program, has coached the Gauchos to a 128-140 cumulative record for a .478 winning percentage, the second best since the softball program went Division I in 1982. Galicinao has coached three players to All-Region honors, two players to Big West Field Player of the Year accolades, two Big West Freshmen Pitchers of the Year and 27 All-Big West Conference selections. Last season, she was named the Big West Coach of the Year for the second time; she was named Co-Coach of the Year in 2008, her first season at the helm of the program.