The last team standing - Illinois State (5-0, MVC) is the last unbeaten team in conference play, after Southern Illinois (9-1) fell last week in a mid-week game at Evansville. The Redbirds are in familiar territory, having won a league-best 11 regular season titles and are bidding to collect their first regular-season title since 2006.
Early Race has history - While just two teams have reached 10 MVC games played, Illinois State and Southern Illinois are off to hot starts at 5-0 and 9-1, respectively. Fittingly, either the Redbirds of the Salukis have placed in the league's top three in all but two seasons in which the MVC has played a conference schedule - 1992: ILS, 5th; SIU, 8th and 2000: ILS, t4th; SIU, 5th.
Interestingly, Illinois State and Southern Illinois have finished 1-2 in the league standings on four occasions: 1990: ILS, 1st; 1991: SIU, 1st; 1997: ILS, 1st; 2003: ILS, 1st
In position - Just behind the leaders in the standings is Missouri State at 6-3 after a weekend sweep of Creighton. Impressively, all six of the Bears win have come on the road. MSU has played just two conference home games, to date.
8 - Number of games Bradley will play on the road out of its next 11 contests.
7 - Creighton's current losing streak, its longest since 2003.
10 - Number of two-out homeruns Evansville has hit this season.
37 - Number of homeruns hit by Illinois State so far this season, the top number in the league.
13 - Numbers of players batting over .400 in MVC-only games.
.803 - Illinois State's team slugging percentage through five league games.
1.31 - Southern Illinois' team ERA in Valley games, the best in the league.
6 - Road wins in seven conference games for Missouri State (6-1).
0 - Number of hits Drake had against Nebraska before Molly McClelland hit a two-run homerun to send the game into extra innings. The Bulldogs would win in eight.
.406 - Career batting average of Illinois State's Kara Nelson, which is currently the top all-time batting average in MVC history (.403 - Barb Gaines, MSU, 1990-93)
197, 125 - Nelson's career hit and runs scored total, the top totals among active players
196 - Alicia Garza's (Southern Illinois) career hit total, second among active players.
123 - Garza's career RBI total, which is tied for 10th best in league history.
120 - Career RBI total of Creighton's Renae Sinkler, second among active players.
39 - Sinkler's career homerun total, tied for 2nd in MVC history (47 - Amber Smith, ILS, 2006-09).
30 - Career homeruns for Drake's Elena Leon, which is tied for 8th best in MVC history.
98, 106 - Career wins and complete games for Creighton's Tara Oltman, the all-time league records.
State Farm MVC Player of the Week - Abby Olson, Illinois State
Abby Olson blasted four home runs, slugged 1.333, scored 8 runs and drove in another seven as Illinois State remained the only unbeaten in MVC play. In Saturday's games, Olson hit three home runs and drove in four runs. The Hartsburg, Ill., native held a batting average of .800 over Saturday's two games In Friday's game, Olson singled to right field and pushed across two ISU runners. The junior third baseman was flawless in the field, as she recorded nine assists and one put out over the three-game series.
State Farm MVC Pitcher of the Week - Kasha Kolb, Wichita State
Sophomore Kasha Kolb went 2-0 for Wichita State last week, helping the Shockers to their first MVC series win of the season. Kolb went the distance in both games and compiled a 0.50 ERA, 16 strikeouts while holding opposing hitters to just six hits and a .133 average. In game one of the series, Kolb threw her second complete game shutout of the season, striking out eight in a 1-0 WSU win. She also struck out eight, allowing one run in a 6-1 Shocker victory to clinch the series on Saturday.
Other Notable Performers:
Brittany Fairbairn, Bradley - Junior Brittany Fairbairn hit .462 (6-for-13) with one run, one double and two RBI to lead the Braves last week. Fairbairn was 1-for-3 with a run scored in a 4-2 loss at Loyola. After an 0-for-2 effort in the series opener against Southern Illinois, she went 5-for-8 with a double and two RBI in the final two games of the series against the Salukis. Fairbairn was 5-for-10 in the three-game set with SIU
Elena Leon, Drake - Senior Elena Leon scored a team-best three runs last week and slammed her 30th career home run in the series finale against Wichita State. Leon added five walks and two stolen bases to her total. The senior started all five games last week, collecting three hits.
Krista Price, Evansville - Senior Krista Price continues to have a great year in MVC play, as she led the Aces offensively to wins over Southern Illinois and Indiana State. Hitting .500 for the week and giving the Aces one of their best weeks of the season at 3-1, Price hit one of two UE home runs to hand the Salukis their first MVC loss on Wednesday. The Kentucky native carried her momentum into the weekend versus Indiana State, as she went 3-for-4 with one run and a grand slam in the Aces' 8-2 win in game two for the doubleheader sweep. The home run gave Price a new career high of four RBI while also increasing her lead as UE's all-time career home run leader with 27 in her career.
Stephanie Jonson, Indiana State - Jonson led the Sycamores with a .500 batting average for the week, going 7-for-14 in five games. She hit her team-leading third homerun of the season, as well as a pair of doubles, with four RBI and three runs scored. Against Evansville on Saturday, Jonson finished 4-for-6, and her .316 average for the year leads Indiana State.
Jenna Schwark, Missouri State - Junior infielder Jenna Schwark turned in a standout all-around performance last week in helping the Bears go 3-1, batting .571 in three games vs. Creighton to propel Missouri State to its first-ever three-game sweep of the Bluejays. Schwark drove in one of three MSU runs in the Bears' decisive third inning in a 4-1 game one victory Friday, then reached base in her final seven plate appearances of the series.In MSU wins in games two and three, she went a combined 4-for-4 with three walks while scoring three times and driving home two runs. The Broken Arrow, Okla., native led-off the fourth inning of game two with a solo homer to knot the score at 1-1, then came home with the game-winning run in the top of the sixth after sparking another MSU rally with a lead-off single. In Saturday's series finale, Schwark again went 2-for-2, drawing a pair of bases on balls to go along with a run-scoring single. For the week, Schwark batted .400 overall and registered a .571 on-base percentage while playing error-free defense in nine chances at third base.
Katie Wilson, Southern Illinois - Wilson helped SIU to a three-game sweep over Bradley this weekend in Peoria, after coming off its first conference loss to Evansville on Wednesday . The senior recorded 10 RBI, all from homeruns, as the Salukis earned their sixth-consecutive three-game sweep over the Braves. The senior provided the game-winning RBI in all three games as she hit a three-run homerun in each game of Saturday's doubleheader to put SIU on the board, topped off by a game-winning grand slam on Sunday. Wilson leads the team with nine homeruns on the season, four of which occurred in Missouri Valley Conference action. She recorded four hits, three homeruns and 13 total bases on the week, while batting .364 against the Purple Aces and the Braves. Wilson is batting .464 in conference play, .337 overall. She leads the team with 32 RBI, tallying 63 total bases on the season.
Sammie Shook, Wichita State - Freshman Sammie Shook hit .500 in three games for the Shockers last week, with two doubles and three RBI. The Mulvane, Kan., native recorded a .833 slugging percentage thanks to a career-high two doubles to drive in a career-high three runs in game three of WSU's series at Drake last weekend. Shook was also hit by a pitch and walked for a .625 on-base percentage. Defensively, Shook recorded six assists and six putouts.
Brynne Dordel, Drake - Junior Brynne Dordel was excellent in three appearances last week, tossing 15.1 innings and striking out 14 in total. Her best effort was a five-inning, one-hit shutout against Wichita State, in which she struck out seven and allowed three walks for her 10th win of the season. She came on in relief in the Wichita State series finale, tossing 6.1 innings while allowing just one run on four hits. For the week, Dordel allowed just three earned runs on five hits and compiled a 1.37 ERA.
Megan Warner, Illinois State - Megan Warner recorded two wins over the weekend at Northern Iowa, in Cedar Falls, Iowa. In the first game, Warner held UNI to two hits in the game and struck out seven batters in the five-inning game. In five innings, Warner faced 19 batters and did not allow an earned run. In Saturday's game, Warner grabbed the win and improved her record to 8-4. She struck out four Panther batters in seven innings. Warner also came in to relieve Jordan Birch in the first game Saturday. In her three appearances, Warner walked only two batters.
Lindsey Beisser, Indiana State - Beisser threw a complete game in the Sycamores' 4-2 win at Evansville on Saturday, surrendering just five hits and striking out five. The sophomore is now 3-1 on the year with a 2.29 ERA.
Natalie Rose, Missouri State - Sophomore right-hander Natalie Rose was nearly flawless in three relief outings last week, helping the Bears go 3-1 with their first road series victory against Creighton in fourteen years. Overall, Rose allowed just one hit in 5.0 innings of scoreless relief, posting a victory and the first save of her Missouri State career. Against the Bluejays in game two of the series, Rose came on with two out and the tying run on base in the bottom of the seventh and promptly struck-out Michelle Graner to wrap up a 3-2 win for her first-ever save as a Bear. She was even stronger the following afternoon, working 3.2 perfect innings out of the MSU bullpen to preserve a 5-1 victory. Rose would fan four of the final six batters of the game to earn her second win of the season. Overall, the Henryetta, Okla., product sat down all 12 CU batters she faced in the series and struck-out seven of the 16 batters she faced for the week, holding the opposition to a miniscule .063 batting average over her three appearances.
Danielle Glosson, Southern Illinois - Glosson went 3-1 last week, facing Evansville and Bradley. The junior was handed her first conference loss of the season in a mid-week single game against Evansville, but regained power as she went on to sweep the Braves over the weekend. In four appearances last week, Glosson struck out 23 batters and allowed only 6 walks. The North Carolina native pitched 20.2 innings, coming in as relief in two games to get SIU out of a jam. She pitched two complete games in her starts, including a complete game shutout against Bradley in game one of a doubleheader. Glosson has four complete-game shutouts to her name in Valley play this season, as SIU has not allowed any runs to cross the plate in game one of a conference doubleheader. She boasts a 14-8 overall record and a 2.07 ERA, while in conference play the junior sits at 8-1 with one save, while carrying a 0.76 ERA. In ten conference games played, Glosson has only allowed five runs to cross the plate, while striking out 76 Valley opponents.
|Copyright ©2013 Missouri Valley Conference. All Rights Reserved.||www.MVC-Sports.com|