Lauren O'Malley had three hits and five RBI in two games against Morgan State on Thursday.
BALTIMORE—The UMBC softball team (22-11, 2-1 AEC) hits the road for the first time in more than a month this weekend when they travel to America East rival Boston University (20-10, 1-1 AEC) for a three-game series. The teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m., while Sunday’s single game is slated to start at 12 p.m.
On the Terriers: Boston U. is 20-10 on the season and 1-1 in America East play… The Terriers have lost three straight, including the last two to Big East opponents Providence and Connecticut… Outfielder Shayne Lotito leads BU with a .398 batting average, while outfielder April Setterlund – the reigning America East Rookie of the Year – is tops with five home runs, and shortstop Melissa Dubay has driven in a team-best 27 RBI… The Terriers are hitting .288 as a team and have outscored their opponents, 131-89… Cassidi Hardy, the reigning America East Pitcher of the Week, has posted a 9-4 record with a team-best 1.28 ERA and 82 strikeouts in 93.0 innings of work.
UMBC vs. Boston U. All-Time: The Terriers lead the all-time series, 12-4, but the Retrievers snapped an eight-game losing streak to BU by knocking the second-seeded Terriers out of the America East Championships last season. As America East rivals, the teams have met at least three times a year since UMBC joined the conference in 2004, but they never met prior.
Home Sweet Home: The Retrievers went 20-5 and batted .327 as a team during their month-long home stand. Junior pitcher Amanda Fefel (Baltimore, Md./Catonsville) led the way, batting .493 (37-for-75) with 12 extra-base hits and 23 RBI. Sophomore second baseman Lauren Brummell (Hanover, Va./Hanover) hit .398 (33-for-83) with 15 extra-base hits and 20 runs scored, while sophomore designated player Lauren O'Malley (Pasadena, Md./Archbishop Spalding) batted .371 (26-for-70) with 14 RBI and senior third baseman Krista Kearns (Santa Fe Springs, Calif./Santa Fe) hit .367 (22-for-60) with 12 RBI and 10 runs scored. On the mound, sophomore Stephanie Weigman (Elkridge, Md./Archbishop Spalding) went 12-3 with a 1.99 ERA and 120 strikeouts.
Weigman’s Whiffs: Weigman struck out her 300th career batter on Thursday in the nightcap of the Morgan State doubleheader, becoming just the third Retriever ever to reach that milestone. She has fanned 160 batters this season, the third-best total in school history and just 12 shy of the school record of 172, which was set by Crystal Ray in 2000. She entered the week ranking 22nd in the nation.
UMBC Career Strikeouts
- Crystal Ray, 422, 1998-2000
- Lauren Nicholson, 387, 2003-06
- Stephanie Weigman, 301, 2008-Present
- Ashley Gray, 229, 2007-08
Fefel Fans 200: Fefel struck out the 200th batter of her career in the first game of Thursday’s Morgan State doubleheader, becoming the eighth Retriever ever to reach that milestone.
In a Pinch: Freshman first baseman Kaela Mason (Bel Air, Md./Harford Tech) leads the Retrievers with five pinch hits in 16 at-bats (.333). Two of them came last week – an RBI double that started a three-run rally in the first game against Towson, and a three-run home run in the series opener against Maine that tied the game in the sixth inning. Mason’s heroics led to an America East Rookie of the Week nod.
Going Streaking: The Retrievers have won four in a row and 21 of their last 26 games… Fefel saw her 17-game hitting streak – the longest since Dana Shepherd’s 20-gamer in 2006 and the fifth-longest in school history – come to an end in the series finale against Maine on March 29. She batted .529 (27-for-51) with 10 extra-base hits and 15 RBI during her streak… Brummell has gotten a hit in 17 of the last 20 games with 10 multi-hit games during that stretch.
It Takes Two: The Retrievers have belted 56 doubles on the season, led by Brummell with 13. She entered the week ranking 17th in the NCAA in doubles per game (0.39), while UMBC ranked sixth as a team (1.74). Brummell’s 13 two-baggers are tied for the second-most ever in a season by a Retriever sophomore.
Hot Hitting: UMBC is hitting .306 as a team this season, and four of the seven players with at least 70 at-bats are hitting better than .340. Fefel (.473) entered the week ranking 11th in the nation in batting average, while the Retrievers were ranked 17th in the country.
Milestone Watch: Fefel needs just one more hit for 150 in her career and two more RBI to reach 100. She became the fifth player in school history to club 25 home runs with her grand slam against Maine on March 29… In the circle, Fefel became the 10th pitcher in UMBC history to win 25 games when she earned the victory in the first game against Morgan State on Thursday, just one week after Weigman joined the club by defeating Towson on March 24.
Power Surge: Mason became the 11th different Retriever to hit a home run this season with her pinch-hit bomb against Maine on March 28. It marks just the second time in school history that as many as 10 different player have gone yard, as the Retrievers set a school record with 14 in 2006 on their way to 80 homers on the season, another school mark.
Coming Through in the Clutch: The Retrievers are hitting .358 with runners in scoring position, including .408 with the bases loaded and .551 with a runner on third and less than two outs. In addition, with two outs in the inning, UMBC is batting .392 with 65 RBI, led by sophomore first baseman Malorie Weller’s (Round Hill, Va./Loudoun Valley/Kennesaw State) 13 two-out RBI.