Pac-12 Softball Weekly Rundown – April 3, 2024


Six Pac-12 teams highlight theUSA Today/NFCA Top-25 poll: No. 8 Stanford, No. 9 Washington, No. 12 UCLA, No. 20 California, No. 21 Arizona and No. 24 Oregon. It’s the fourth time this season the Pac-12 has six-or-more teams in the USA Today/NFCA Top 25.

No. 9 Washington squares off against No. 24 Oregon in another top-25 Pac-12 matchup. The Ducks have won three league series this season and are fourth in the Pac-12 standings. The Huskies are 6-4 this season against NFCA top-25 teams, including 4-2 against ranked Pac-12 opponents.

Utah wraps up its homestand this weekend with a three-game series against No. 21 Arizona. The Utes won last weekend’s series against then-No. 18 California before defeating Utah State, 9-1 on Monday. Arizona has won 13 of its last 16 against Utah, however the Utes won two of three last season for the series win. 

Winners of three straight, No. 12 UCLA visits Oregon State for a three-game slate. The Bruins are on a 15-game winning streak against the Beavers, who are eyeing their first win over UCLA since April 15, 2017. This weekend’s series will be the second-straight series against a ranked Pac-12 foe for Oregon State, who goes on to play Stanford and Oregon State the following two weekends.

No. 8 Stanford, who sits atop the Pac-12 standings with an 8-1 record, returns home to face Arizona State. The Cardinal have won every league series this season, including a pair of sweeps against then-No. 17 California and Utah. This weekend’s series wraps up an eight-game road trip for the Sun Devils, who most recently topped San Diego, 3-2 in nine innings.

No. 20 California hosts Saint Mary’s on Wednesday before welcoming LMU for three games at Levine-Fricke Field this weekend. The Golden Bears are 22-2 in non-conference action this season, are 69-2 all-time against the Gaels, and 7-0 all-time against the Lions.

Action continues Monday with No. 9 Washington hosting Seattle, and No. 21 Arizona visits New Mexico State for a Tuesday doubleheader before No. 12 UCLA battles Cal State Fullerton.

Quick Hits

  • The Pac-12 is second among all conferences with 8.00 hits per game, and fourth with 5.28 runs per game, 12.51 total bases per game, and 0.92 home runs per game
  • Haley Denning of Utah is the NCAA DI active leader in career hits with 286.
  • Washington is hitting .334 on the year, which is the 13th-best team batting average nationally.
    • The Huskies are 18-0 when hitting .320 or better in a game this season.
  • Stanford’s NiJaree Canady’s 0.52 ERA and 11.2 K/7 each lead the country.
    • The sophomore has recorded double-digit strikeouts in nine appearances this season, and hit her first career home run this past weekend while tossing seven scoreless innings with 13 strikeouts.
    • She is the only active NCAA DI pitcher with a sub-1.00 career ERA (0.55).
  • Utah’s Abby Dayton is hitting a Pac-12-leading .477, which is the sixth-best batting average in NCAA DI.
    • Dayton has 15 multi-hit games this season, and has reached base in 26 straight. Dayton’s .525 on-base percentage paces the Pac-12.
  • Arizona and Washington continue to boast strong defense, ranking third and fourth, respectively, nationally in fielding percentage at 98.1%.
    • The Wildcats have 22 errorless games, while the Huskies have 18.
  • With 53 career doubles, Oregon’s Emma Kauf has the fourth-most doubles among active NCAA DI players.
  • Pac-12 in the top 25 toughest schedule rankings – Past opposition winning percentage:
    • 3. Stanford – .662
    • 4. UCLA – .653
    • 11. Arizona – .628
    • 23. California – .612
  • The Pac-12 is 147-54-1 (.730) in non-conference action, boasting the fourth-best non-conference winning percentage among all leagues.

Rankings Rundown

  • USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Poll: No. 8 Stanford, No. 9 Washington, No. 12 UCLA, No. 20 California, No. 21 Arizona and No. 24 Oregon. 
  • D1Softball: No. 2 Stanford, No. 8 Washington, No. 12 UCLA, No. 22 Arizona and No. 23 California.
  • Softball America: No. 7 Stanford, No. 9 Washington, No. 12 UCLA, No. 23 California andRV Arizona.
  • Softball: No. 8 Stanford, No. 9 Washington, No. 12 UCLA, No. 20 California, No. 22 Oregon and RV Arizona.
  • NCAA RPI Rankings (through 4/1): No. 2 Stanford, No. 11 UCLA, No. 19 California, No. 22 Washington, No. 24 Arizona, No. 37 Oregon, No. 46 Utah, No. 79 Arizona State, and No. 89 Oregon State. 

Conference Notebook

  • ArizonaAissa Silva’s 28 appearances in the circle are tied for the second most in NCAA DI. Silva has appeared in 82% of Arizona’s games this season, and her 14 wins are the most in the league.
  • Arizona State: The Sun Devils’ 0.42 triples per game is the sixth-most nationally. Kayla Lissy has a team-high four on the year, which is tied for the second most in the league. Lissy’s 15 career triples are tied for the fifth most among active Division I players.
  • California: Cal is slugging .531 this season and are hitting a Pac-12-best 1.42 home runs per game. The Golden Bears have 51 home runs this season, which are 13 more than the next highest total in the league.
  • OregonAriel Carlson leads the Pac-12 with 37 RBI, while teammate Kai Luschar ranks third with a .427 batting average. Luschar is also second with 18 stolen bases on the year. Oregon is 14-2 when stealing multiple bases in a game this season.
  • Oregon State: Oregon State is the only team in the league with three pitchers posting 50 or more strikeouts this season. Logan Hulon leads the Beavers with 59 strikeouts, while Sarah Haendiges has 52 and Ellie Garcia has 50.
  • Stanford: The Cardinal is 8-1 to start Pac-12 play, leading the conference behind the best start in program history. Stanford has a pair of Pac-12 series sweeps under its belt for the first time since 2013. The Cardinal is 19-1 this season against unranked opponents 
  • UCLAMaya Brady is the only player in the league who ranks in the top five in batting average (5th – .407), RBI (3rd – 35) and home runs (2nd – 9). Brady needs four home runs to pass Stephany LaRosa (66) for the second most career home runs in UCLA history.
  • Utah: Julia Jimenez set a new career high with six RBI in the 9-1 win over Utah State on Monday. The Utes are 5-2 on the year when Jimenez has multiple RBI in a game, and her 29 RBI in 2024 leads the team while being the seventh most in the Pac-12.
  • WashingtonRuby Meylan’s ERA of 1.89 is the second best in the league, while teammate Lindsay Lopez is seventh with a 2.58 ERA, making Washington the only team in the Pac-12 with two pitchers in the top seven of ERA. Each pitcher has eight wins on the year, and have combined for 135.2 innings pitched and 150 strikeouts.

Watch List

  • 11 Pac-12 players are on USA Softball’s Top 50 “Watch List” for Player of the Year: Maya Brady, UCLA; NiJaree Canady, STAN; Megan Grant, UCLA; Stevie Hansen, ORE; Taryn Kern, STAN; Mariah Lopez, UTAH; Ruby Meylan, WASH; Sharlize Palacios, UCLA; Carlie Scupin, ARIZ; Allie Skaggs, ARIZ; Jordan Woolery, UCLA. 

Additions & Returners

  • Every Pac-12 program was ranked in the top-45 of Extra Inning Softball’s 2023 team recruiting rankings: No. 7 Washington, No. 8 UCLA, No. 9 Arizona, No. 13 Oregon, No. 31 Stanford, No. 33 Arizona State, No. 34 California, No. 44 Oregon State, No. 45 Utah.
  • The Pac-12 returns 12 First-Team All-Conference members from a season ago: Tatum Anzaldo (CAL); Aliya Belarde (UTAH), Brady (UCLA), NiJaree Canady, (STAN), Abby Dayton (UTAH), Megan Grant (UCLA), Dakota Kennedy (ARIZ), Mariah Lopez (UTAH), River Mahler (STAN), Ruby Meylan (WASH), Allie Skaggs (ARIZ) and Jordan Woolery (UCLA).
  • Six 2023 NFCA All-Americans will suit up for Pac-12 teams this year: Brady, Grant, Taryn Kern, Lopez, Woolery & Meylan.
    • Stanford added 2023 NFCA Second Team All-American Kern this offseason, who transferred in from Indiana.

PowHER of the PAC

  • All nine Pac-12 softball programs are led by female head coaches.
  • Six of nine are leading their alma maters: Jessica Allister, STAN; Amy Hogue, UTAH; Kelly Inouye-Perez, UCLA; Caitlin Lowe, ARIZ; Chelsea Spencer, CAL; Heather Tarr, WASH.

Preseason Coaches Poll

  • Stanford received seven first-place votes and 63 total points to finish atop the 2024 preseason coaches poll for the first time in Pac-12 history. Reigning regular-season champion UCLA was second with 54 points, while Utah came in third with 49 points and one first-place vote. Washington grabbed the remaining first-place vote and 45 points to finish fourth. 2023 Pac-12 Player of the Year and Batting Champion Brady of UCLA headlined the 20-member Preseason All-Pac-12 Team. 

2024 Pac-12 Softball Tournament

  • Stanford’s Boyd & Jill Smith Family Stadium will host the 2024 Pac-12 Softball Tournament, which takes place from May 8-11. The four-day event will begin with a play-in game between the eighth and ninth-place teams in the regular-season standings on Wednesday. That winner will advance to an eight-team, single-elimination bracket with the quarterfinals, semifinals and championship being contested on the following three days. The winner of the Pac-12 Softball Tournament will receive the Conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Historically Speaking

  • The nation’s most successful softball conference, Pac-12 programs have combined to win 24 of the 41 NCAA softball championships all-time, 17 more than the next closest league, and all nine Pac-12 teams have made appearances in the Women’s College World Series. Of the 13 different programs to have won an NCAA softball championship, five are from the Pac-12: UCLA (12), Arizona (8), Arizona State (2), California (1) and Washington (1). The Pac-12 sent six teams to the NCAA Tournament a season ago, with three teams advancing to the Women’s College World Series, the most of any other conference. 

Upcoming Schedule (Full Schedule

Wednesday, April 3  
Saint Mary’s at No. 20 CaliforniaPac-12 Network, Pac-12 Bay Area2 p.m. PT
Friday, April 5  
No. 21 Arizona at UtahPac-12 Plus3 p.m. PT
No. 12 UCLA at Oregon StatePac-12 Network, Pac-12 Los Angeles5 p.m. PT
Arizona State at No. 8 StanfordPac-12 Arizona, Pac-12 Bay Area7 p.m. PT
No. 9 Washington at No. 24 OregonPac-12 Network, Pac-12 Washington7 p.m. PT
Saturday, April 6
No. 21 Arizona at UtahPac-12 Plus12 p.m. PT
LMU at No. 20 CaliforniaPac-12 Plus12 p.m. PT
No. 12 UCLA at Oregon StatePac-12 Network, Pac-12 Los Angeles, Pac-12 Oregon2 p.m. PT
LMU at No. 20 CaliforniaPac-12 Plus3 p.m. PT
Arizona State at No. 8 StanfordPac-12 Arizona, Pac-12 Bay Area5 p.m. PT
No. 9 Washington at No. 24 OregonPac-12 Network, Pac-12 Oregon, Pac-12 Washington5 p.m. PT
Sunday, April 7  
No. 21 Arizona at UtahPac-12 Plus11 a.m. PT
No. 9 Washington at No. 24 OregonPac-12 Network, Pac-12 Washington12 p.m .PT
Arizona State at No. 8 StanfordPac-12 Arizona, Pac-12 Bay Area1 p.m. PT
LMU at No. 20 CaliforniaPac-12 Plus1 p.m. PT
No. 12 UCLA at Oregon StatePac-12 Oregon1 p.m. PT
Monday, April 8  
Seattle at No. 9 WashingtonPac-12 Network, Pac-12 Washington6 p.m. PT
Tuesday, April 9  
No 21 Arizona at New Mexico StateESPN+2 p.m. PT
No 21 Arizona at New Mexico StateESPN+4 p.m. PT
Cal State Fullerton at No. 12 UCLAPac-12 Plus6 p.m PT

Pac-12 Standings (Full Standings)

No. 8 Stanford8-1-028-6-0
No. 9 Washington9-3-025-5-0
No. 12 UCLA6-3-020-8-0
No. 24 Oregon7-4-020-12-0
No. 21 Arizona5-7-022-11-1
No. 20 California4-8-026-10-0
Oregon State3-6-015-19-0
Arizona State2-7-018-15-0

Pac-12 Softball Weekly Awards

Feb. 12Ariel Carlson, ORENiJaree Canady, STANJadyn Glab, WASH
Feb. 19Elon Butler, CALRuby Meylan, WASHRegan Shockey, ARIZ
Feb. 26Maya Brady, UCLATaylor Tinsley, UCLARegan Shockey, ARIZ
March 4Jillian Celis, WASHNiJaree Canady, STANAva Gall, STAN
March 11Maya Brady, UCLANiJaree Canady, STANPaige Doerr, OSU
March 18Sharlize Palacios, UCLARegan Krause, STANKaitlyn Terry, UCLA
March 25Acacia Anders, CALMorgan Scott, OREKaitlyn Terry, UCLA
April 1Rylee Holtorf, WASHNiJaree Canady, STANSidne Peters, WASH

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