Bulldogs Host Fresno State Classic

March 5, 2013

By Theresa Kurtz

FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno State softball hosts its second tournament of the 2013 season, the Fresno State Classic. The Bulldogs are set to play five games between March 7-10. The `Dogs kick off tournament action on Thursday, March 7 at 5 p.m. against Iowa State.

The tournament field includes, the Bulldogs, Cal, Iowa State, Oregon, Oregon State, San Diego State and St. Mary's. Three of the teams, the Ducks, Beavers and Golden Bears are nationally ranked and competed in the 2012 NCAA Tournament.

Thursday night is Buddies and Bubbles at the Park night. Fans can buy one ticket and get a second for free. The first 100 kids get free bubbles.

Bulldogs Grab Grand Slams
Fresno State has recorded two grand slams in 2013. Junior Vonnie Martin recorded her first career grand Slam in her first at-bat of the season against UTEP. Michelle Solomon became the second Bulldog to hit a grand slam after recording her first against Utah State. The most grand slams hit in a single season is four set in 2009. The most career grand slams by a Bulldog is Christina Clark with five.

Fresno State Scores First
The Bulldogs plan in 2013 is to be aggressive on offense and the `Dogs are doing just that. Fresno State has outscored its opponents 26-14 in the first inning. The Bulldogs are 8-4 when scoring first and 8-4 when scoring in the first inning. The `Dogs have also outscored opponents 24-12 in the fifth inning and are 8-1 when leading after the fifth inning.

`Dogs Collecting Bases
Fresno State is first in the Mountain West in stolen bases. The Bulldogs have stolen a total of 39 and surpassed the 2012 total of 18. Brenna Moss is leading the way with 17, while Brooke Ortiz and Stesha Brazil have seven stolen bases. The `Dogs are on pace to break the single-season stolen base record of 75 set in 1980.

Scouting the Fresno State Classic
Iowa State: The Bulldogs are 4-1 after five meetings with Iowa State. The `Dogs won the last meeting in 2012. The Cyclones are 9-6 on the season and 5-5 away from home. Erica Miller is hitting a team-high .512 with four doubles, a triple, two home runs and a team best 21 RBI. Taylor Smith is 4-2 in the circle with 12 strikeouts in five starts.

Oregon: Fresno State owns a 29-4 all-time record against Oregon. The Bulldogs lost to the Ducks by one run a year ago at Bulldog Diamond. The Ducks have a 19-3 mark in 2013. Courtney Ceo is hitting .471 in 21 starts. She has a total of 32 hits, including three doubles and three home runs. Jessica Moore is 10-2 in the circle with a 1.39 ERA and 60 strikeouts.

Oregon State: The Bulldogs have an all-time record of 20-6 over Oregon State. This is the first meeting between the two programs since 2005. Former Bulldog Laura Berg is in her first year as the head coach of the Beavers. Oregon State is 17-4 in 2013. Natalie Hampton is hitting a team-high .446 with five doubles, 10 home runs and 31 RBI. Marina Demore is 12-2 in the circle after 11 starts. She has struck out 49 in 80 innings of work.

Cal: Fresno State has an overall record of 63-44 against Cal. The Bulldogs have lost the last two meetings. The Golden Bears are among three ranked teams the `Dogs play this weekend. Cal has an overall record of 15-2 in 2013. Victoria Jones is hitting .333 after 17 starts. She has four doubles, three home runs and 14 RBI on the season. In the circle, Jolene Henderson is 11-2 with a 1.21 ERA. She has struck out 97 and opponents are batting .170 against her.

St. Mary's: The Bulldogs face St. Mary's for the second time this season. In the first meeting, freshman Jill Compton recorded her first career no-hitter as the `Dogs won 4-0. Fresno State is 14-1 all-time against the Gaels and have won two straight. SMC is 4-9 on the year and 1-2 on the road. Megan Smith is batting a team best .297 after starting 13 games. She has 11 hits, including a double and home run. Jessica Lemmon is 1-3 in the circle after seven starts and has a 3.00 ERA.

"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" -- Bulldog softball return home for the Fresno State Classic March 7-10. Catch the action on ESPN 790 The Deuce, home Bulldog softball. Stay connected with the Bulldogs on Facebook (fresnostateathletics) and Twitter (@FSAthletics).