NORTHRIDGE, Calif.–The University of Hawai’i softball team (19-10, 2-1 Big West) heads to Northridge, Calif. this week to take on CSUN in a three-game Big West series. The two teams will face off in a single game on Friday, March 24 at 12:00 p.m. HT followed by a doubleheader on Saturday, March 25. First pitch for the double-dip is slated for 10:00 a.m. HT.
|GAMES 30-32: HAWAI’I RAINBOW WAHINE (19-10, 2-1 BW) vs. CSUN MATADORS (10-13, 2-1 BW)|
|Date | Time||Friday, March 24, 2023 | 12:00 P.M. HT|
Saturday (DH), March 25, 2023 | 10:00 A.M. HT
|Location||Matador Diamond (1,000) – Northridge, Calif.|
|Video Stream||ESPN+ – Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3|
|Game Notes||Hawai’i (PDF) | CSUN|
|Social Media||@HawaiiSB | #HawaiiSB | @HawaiiSoftball | Facebook|
CSUN Matadors (10-13, 2-1 Big West)Series Record: UH, 23-18-1
Streak: UH won 3. Last season, UH narrowly swept the Matadors. After pushing back the games to be played on Saturday and Sunday, UH swept Saturday’s doubleheader by identical 4-3 scores. In the series finale, UH sealed the sweep holding off the Matadors, 3-1.
Head Coach: Charlotte Morgan (Third Season)
HEAD COACH: Bob CoolenOverall record: 1,140-771-1 (37th Season)
Hawai’i: 1,068-678-1 (32nd Season)
NEWS & NOTES
- The Rainbow Wahine opened the Big West season with a three-game series against UC Santa Barbara. The Gauchos won the first game 5-2, but the ‘Bows swept Saturday’s doubleheader, 9-5 and 5-0 to capture the series, 2-1. In the two wins, UH’s offensive power surge was highlighted by a combined five home runs which accounted for 11 of UH’s 14 runs scored in the double dip.
- Although UH has almost the idential amount of at-bats as their opponents (704 to 703), the ‘Bows have out-hit their counterparts, .286-to-.235 in average and 201-to-165 hits. Hawai’i has outscored their opponents, 153-to-89 with a Big West best 32 home runs accounting for 57 of UH’s 153 runs scored. Currently, UH leads the BW with a .4884 slugging percentage.
- Individually, Mya-Liah Bethea leads the league and is ranked 17th in the nation with nine home runs averaging .31 home runs per game. Maya Nakamura leads the BW with her .522 on-base percentage. Hawai’i has the No.’s 2, 3, and 4 batters in the Big West who are the toughest to strikeout–Izabella Martinez is #2 in the BW and No. 11 in the NCAA. Ka’ena Keliinoi is No. 3 in the league and No. 120 in the NCAA while Nakamura is No. 4 in the league and No. 121 in the nation. On defense, pitcher Brianna Lopez leads the league with four shutouts and nine overall victories. Her 1.73 ERA ranks her fifth in the BW.
- Sophomore Chloe Borges came off the bench to belt a pair of home runs. In the first game, she launched a pinch hit HR and on Saturday, she followed that with a 2-run homer as the designated player. Overall, in nine at-bats she is hitting 0222 with four runs scored, four RBI, two walks and a strikeout.
- After a shaky Big West opener, sophomore southpaw pitcher Brianna Lopez battled her way back to shutout the Gauchos, 5-0 in the series finale. In the win, she tossed a three-hitter while blanking UCSB with four walks and seven strikeouts. Overall, Lopez is 9-4 with nine complete games and four shutouts under her belt. In 85.0 innings pitched, she has held opponents to a .217 bating average with a 1.73 ERA. She 66 strikeouts to 33 walks.
- Lopez’s battery-mate, sophomore catcher Izabella Martinez currently leads UH with a .333 batting average (25-for-75) with a team-best five doubles. She has been clutch with runners in scoring position hitting .419 (13-for-31) with runners in scoring position and is tied with a team-high 23 RBI with Haley Johnson. Although she the catcher is often pinch run for, she has scored 15 runs and is one of seven Rainbow Wahine to have already scored double-digit runs.
- Junior shortstop Xiao Gin has led off the UH offense in all 29 games thus far. She leads UH with 28 hits and 23 runs scored and is tied for the team-lead with 20 walks with Maya Nakamura. The Oregon State transfer is second on the team hitting .329 and second also in on-base percentage at .458. When Gin leads off an inning, she is setting the proverbial table for teammates with a.581 average when starting off a frame. Gin also leads the team with nine multiple-hit games.
- Junior second baseman Maya Nakamura is tops on the team with a .522 on-base percentage ans tied with Gin with the most walks (20). Nakamura has be solit across the board, hitting .317 (20-for-63) with two doubles, two triples and three home runs with 13 RBI.
- Junior first baseman Mya’Liah Bethea continues her offensive metamorphosis as she lead the Big West with nine home runs and .679 slugging percentage. This year, she is hitting .309 overall (25-for-81) with 18 runs scored and 20 RBI. Her .679 slugging percentage puts her atop the BW rankings. Bethea already has more hits through 29 games than she had all of last season. As a sophomore in 2022, the utility player from Las Vegas, Nev.-native hit just .178 overall (16-for-90) while playing at catcher, first base and leftfield. Bethea also holds a team-best 14-game reached base safely streak.
- Pitcher Key-Annah Campbell-Pua has earned a pair of BW Freshman of the Week awards and one Pitcher of the Week honor in her rookie season. She comes into Week 6 with an 8-3 overall record with six complete games and two shutouts. She has a 2.42 ERA in 66.2 innings pitched with 35 strikeouts to 15 walks. She has held opponents to a .209 batting average. Against Montana, she fired a seven-inning no-hit shutout with a season high six strikeouts. Later, against Niagara, she earned a complete-game, five inning win, allowing just one hit while facing the minimum 15 batters for the game.
- Seven Rainbow Wahine have started all 29 games this season (Gin, Keliinoi, Nakamura,Johnson, Martinez, Bethea and Bartolotti). Coolen has stuck with the first six batters in his line up for the last 22-straight games with Gin leading off, Ka’ena Keliinoi second, Nakamura third, Haley Johnson at clean-up, Martinez at five and Bethea batting sixth. Three have started all 29 at the same position (Gin at short, Nakamura at second, and Bartolotti in centerfield). Utility player Keliinoi has started at third base in 17 games, in left for five games, and in right for seven games. Coincidentally, when starting in right, UH is a perfect 7-0. Martinez has started 24 games behind the plate and five as the designated player while Johnson is the reverse, starting 24 at DP and five at catcher.