UAlbany Softball Continues Conference Play with Weekend Series at Maine

 

Photo: UAlbany Softball is 3-0 in conference play as they head to Maine for an America East weekend series. 

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ALBANY, N.Y. -- The University at Albany softball team (16-7, 3-0 AE) will travel to the University of Maine (5-26, 2-1 AE) for a weekend series at Kessock Field. The Great Danes play a doublehead­er on Saturday, April 6 followed by a third game on Sunday, April 7. First pitch is set for 1:00 p.m. and noon, respectively. UAlbany swept Maine in a three-game series at Albany Field last March. They defeated them a fourth time in the 2012 America East Tournament.

SCOUTING MAINE
Maine is led by sophomore Emj Fogel. She's played all 31 games this season, racking up a team-high 104 at-bats, 28 hits and .269 batting average. She’s also recorded a .303 on-base percentage. Junior Jean Stevens has a team-leading 21 RBIs and eight homers. Her power numbers give her a .565 slugging percentage. Junior Han­nah Hill has started 10 games on the mound with a 3.85 ERA. As a unit, the Blackbears are batting .217, with 81 runs, a .286 on-base percentage, and a .297 slugging percentage with 12 homers. They won two-of-three at UMBC to open up America East Conference play.

LAST GAME v. UALBANY
In a 2012 America East Tournament elimination game, UAlbany defeated Maine, 2-0, on May 12. The Great Danes jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second. Current UAlbany senior Kylie Apostolina began the inning with a single to left field and later scored the game’s first run. That was all the team needed as junior Brittany MacFawn pitched her ninth complete-game shutout. MacFawn did not allow a base runner past first in seven innings. Sophomore Vicky McFarland drove an the insurance run in the top of the seventh.

DANES TAKE WIN STREAK TO DOUBLE-DIGITS
UAlbany has won 11 straight games and 13 of the team’s last 14. Over the span, the Great Danes have outscored opponents 93-35. They’ve twice won on the eight-run mercy rule and strung together four shut-out victories. The team scored a season-high 14 runs twice, tying the second most for single-game runs in Division I program history (15 in 2004). Their 11-game win streak ties a Division I program record.

MACFAWN FLIRTS WITH PERFECTION
Brittany MacFawn has flirted with perfection in all three of her home starts this season. Against Siena on Thursday, April 4, the right-hander was within one out of throwing her second no-hitter in three games and her second career perfect game. She threw the third no-hitter of her career in a 1-0 win over the University of Hartford on Friday, March 29. MacFawn followed with a one-hitter the next day against the Hawks. She won all three starts, striking out a com­bined 30 hitters.

SNAGGING BASES
UAlbany has stolen an America East-high 42 bases to begin 2013. Leading the charge on the basepath is freshman Annie Johnson. In 22 games this season, she’s stolen 16 bases. Vicky McFarland, who stole 23 bases last season, is second with 10 steals. The two combine to steal over one base per game. As of April 1, Johnson was tied for 13th in the country with .71 steals per game.

CASTRO SLUGGING FOR PROGRAM RECORD BOOKS
In her first season with UAlbany, junior Charlise Castro found her way into the Great Danes
record book. Her .461 batting average put her name second for the single-season program record. She also recorded 13 homers and doubles -- both ranking second for a single-season. In 2013, Castro has returned with a team-high four homers and 16 RBIs. Her career home run total ranks fifth in UAlbany program history.

OSTROM TAKES WIN-STREAK TO SEVEN
Junior right-hander Emily Ostrom has won seven straight starts for UAlbany. She’s posted a 4.18 ERA, striking out 21 and pitching eight complete games. She nearly pitched a perfect game against St. Peter’s in the Rebel Games – losing the bid after 6.1 innings.

GREAT DANES ARE TOP DOGS IN PRESEASON POLL
UAlbany and Boston University, who played in the 2012 America East Softball Championship, were announced on Monday, Feb. 4, as co-favorites in the conference preseason coaches' poll. UAlbany is coming off a 36-14 overall record and second place finish, 13-5, in the America East. After defeating both Maine and Stony Brook in elimination games, the Great Danes fell just short of crowning themselves conference champions for the fifth time. UAlbany and Boston U. each received three first-place votes and 32 points in a vote of the league’s head coaches.