No. 5 Softball Heads To California For The San Diego Classic II

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COLLEGE STATION -- The fifth-ranked Texas A&M softball team heads to the Golden State over the weekend to participate in the San Diego Classic II at both the USD Complex and SDSU Softball Stadium.

Fans can listen to this weekend’s games on free of charge through Aggies All-Access. A&M’s games against Cal State Fullerton, San Diego State and Long Beach State will be broadcast live on 1150 AM The Zone with play-by-play from Louie Belina and color commentary from Stephen Grove.

“Once again, we will have the opportunity to play in a very competitive tournament,” A&M head coach Jo Evans said. “San Diego State, Fullerton, and Utah are off to a strong start this season and will be tough opponents.

“I am looking forward to competing against two of my former players who are now coaching at the University of Utah. I am proud to have been a part of Amy Timmel Hogue and Adrian Gregory's collegiate careers and I am proud of what they are accomplishing at my alma mater, the University of Utah. I enjoyed coaching both of them and look forward to watching them interact with their team and lead their team throughout this tournament.”

Over the course of the three-day tournament, the Aggies will play five games. A&M opens tournament play Friday with games against Utah at 4 p.m. and San Diego at 9 p.m. On Saturday, the Aggies will take on Cal State Fullerton at 4 p.m. and No. 23 San Diego State at 9 p.m. A&M will close out tournament play Sunday against No. 25 Long Beach State at 12 p.m.

Utah improved to 12-10 on the season after opening its home season Tuesday with a pair of victories over Southern Utah, winning the first game 8-0 and the second game, 4-0.

Kara Foster’s .344 clip ranks second on the team. The sophomore has scored a team-leading 16 runs on 21 hits, including two doubles and eight homeruns.

Ashley Smuda carries a 2.42 ERA in the circle for the Utes. En route to a 9-5 record, the sophomore transfer has struckout 75 hitters through 84 innings of work.

The Aggies lead the all-time series with a 15-5 record. The two teams last met in 2007 at the Kajikawa Classic with A&M winning 10-3 over the Utes.

Despite going 3-2 at the ASU Diamond Invitational in Tempe, Ariz. last weekend, San Diego fell to 9-15 on the season. The Toreros posted wins over Pacific, 5-4, No. 17 San Diego State, 6-5, and Utah, 8-4 while suffering 4-3 and 14-0 losses to UC Davis and top-ranked Arizona State, respectively.

Friday’s game marks just the third meeting between the Aggies and Toreros. A&M holds the all-time series lead at 2-0 after defeating USD, 6-3 and 2-0, at the San Diego State Tournament in 2002.

Cal State Fullerton improved to 13-10-1 on the season after upsetting second-ranked UCLA, 1-0, on Wednesday.

Kiki Munoz leads the Titans at the plate, hitting .391 on the year. The senior has driven in a team-leading 12 RBIs off 27 hits, including nine doubles and a homerun.

On the mound for Fullerton, Christine Hiner (6-5) boasts a 1.78 ERA. The freshman has tossed three complete game shutouts, fanning 68 hitters through 78.2 innings of work.

Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series with a record of 18-15 heading into Saturday’s game. The Titans won the last meeting 6-5 in 2006 at the Palm Springs Classic in Cathedral City, Calif.

San Diego State dropped to 19-8 on the season after going 2-3 the ASU Diamond Invitational last weekend. SDSU suffered losses to Pacific (1-4), San Diego (5-6) and top-ranked Arizona State (1-3), while posting wins over UC Davis (7-0) and Pacific (3-2).

Tamani Wells is hitting .369 on the season to lead the Aztecs at the plate. The senior has scored 14 runs off 31 hits and driven in 12 RBIs.

Christina Ross (11-7) owns a 0.96 ERA in the circle for SDSU. Through 21 appearances, the senior has logged 10 complete games, striking out 98 in 109.1 innings of work.

Long Beach State enters this weekend’s tournament with a season record of 15-8.

Brooke LaSage is hitting .359 to lead the 49ers at the plate. The senior has scored eight runs off 23 hits, including two doubles and a triple.

On the mound for the 49ers Brooke Turner boasts a 0.47 ERA and a 10-3 record. The freshman has tossed seven complete game shutouts, recording 107 strikeouts in 90 innings of work.

LBSU improved its all-time series lead to 9-5 after defeating the Aggies 9-1 at the Palm Springs Classic in Cathedral City, Calif. in 2005.

The Aggies improved to 25-4 on the season after finishing the Aggie Classic presented by HoneyBaked Ham and Café with a 4-1 record. A&M split games with No. 18 Louisiana-Lafayette winning the first game 1-0 before falling 1-2 to the Cajuns. In other tournament action, the Aggies recorded wins over BYU (3-1) and Illinois (7-3).

Macie Morrow is hitting .370 on the season for the Aggies. The sophomore shortstop has scored 18 runs and driven in 13 RBIs off a team-leading 34 hits, including six doubles, a triple and two homeruns.

Megan Gibson was named Big 12 Pitcher of the Week for the second-consecutive week after her performance in the Aggie Classic last weekend. The senior improved to a perfect 14-0 on the season and boasts a 0.85 ERA. Gibson has logged eight complete game shutouts, striking out 91 hitters in just as many innings.

Joining Gibson in the circle is freshman Rhi Kliesing, who owns a 1.13 ERA through 12 appearances. Kliesing (7-2) has recorded four complete game shutouts, fanning 57 hitters through 68.1 innings of work.

“I am proud of what our team has accomplished over the past couple weeks,” Evans ended. “ It has been tough having Amanda Scarborough out of the line-up, but our young players have picked up the slack and they are contributing to our success. Rhi Kliesing has been an integral part of our success and I anticipate her continuing to grow and develop and make the most of her opportunities.”

Following the conclusion of tournament action, the Aggies will open conference play at home against No. 14 Baylor on Wednesday. Game-time is set for 6:30 p.m. at the Aggie Softball Complex.

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