COLLEGE STATION, Texas- The sixth-ranked Texas A&M softball team (34-6, 6-0 Big 12) looks to improve on its best-ever conference start as it heads to Ames, Iowa for a two-game series against the Iowa State Cyclones. First pitch of the Saturday doubleheader is scheduled for 1 p.m. at the Southwest Athletic Complex.
“We are going to prepare and play our hearts out in Ames,” A&M head Coach Jo Evans said. “There’s no opponent we think is going to be easy. We know there is not a team in the conference that can’t beat us, so we when we go out there we’re going to have to play great in every game. I think our kids will.”
Fans can listen to this weekend’s games on 1150 AM The Zone with play-by-play from Louie Belina and color commentary from Clint Netherland.
Iowa State (23-15, 1-3 Big 12) is 1-4 in its last five games after dropping a 3-1 decision to intrastate rival Iowa in non-conference action on Tuesday.
Courtney Wray is hitting .353 on the season for the Cyclones. The sophomore leads the league standings in triples (3) and ranks sixth in hits (41).
Rachel Zabriskie carries an 11-5 record in the circle for Iowa State, which sits sixth in the Big 12. The freshman has tossed five complete game shutouts, striking out 99 through 105.2 innings of work.
ISU has scored just two runs in four Big 12 games after averaging 4.5 runs per game in non-conference play.
A&M remained perfect in league action after sweeping its two-game series with Missouri last weekend. The Aggies took the first game 5-1 on Saturday but were forced to come from behind Sunday, overcoming a three-run deficit in the first inning to defeat the Tigers 9-4.
The two wins over Missouri marked A&M’s third straight conference series sweep this season.
Kelsey Spittler was 6-for-9 (.667) in three games started last week, raising her batting average 39 points from .253 to .292. The sophomore was responsible for the game-winning RBI against Baylor on Wednesday and for leading-off the inning in which the Aggies would tie the game at four-all in the Sunday game against Missouri.
In the two-game series against Missouri, Megan Gibson struck out 20 in 14-complete innings while only allowing two free passes.
For the 14th-straight game, Gibson has held a sub-one ERA, currently sitting at a 0.92. Gibson has registered five of the Aggies’ six Big 12 wins, tying her career-high from 2007 and helping A&M to its best start in league play. The Spring, Texas-native leads the conference in wins (21), walks (34), doubles (11), shutouts (10), innings pitched (145), and complete games (20).
Saturday’s game marks the 33rd meeting between the two schools, with the Aggies holding a commanding 27-5 all-time series lead over the Cyclones.
A&M won both games in 2007, 4-1 and 8-0, in College Station.
NOTE: The two-game series was originally scheduled for Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at 12 p.m. but was changed to a doubleheader due to forecasted rain on Sunday.