NEWS AND NOTES
- Auburn head coach Mickey Dean earned the 100th win of his tenure as the Tigers’ head coach.
- Florida head coach Tim Walton earned the 800th win of his tenure as the Gators’ head coach. Walton is the only SEC coach to win multiple national championships.
- UCF “super senior” pitcher Alea White set the program record for pitching wins with the 81st victory of her career.
- Former Wisconsin slugger Taylor Johnson is transferring to North Carolina State. She will begin play with the Wolfpack in the 2022 season.
- The NCAA announced that the dead period (no recruiting contact) will continue through May 31st, and may continue thereafter. The members of the D1 Council committed to providing “clarity on plans [to]… transition back to recruiting calendars,” by April 15th.
- UCLA star Rachel Garcia was injured while on offense on Saturday. Originally scheduled to start the game in the circle, she left the game without throwing a pitch and did not play again on the weekend. She did return to the Bruins’ makeshift, expanded “dugout” but a timeline for her return and the extent of her injury are not yet known.
Marshall is in the midst of a 2-week pause due to COVID-19 protocols… Illinois-Chicago pulled out of their scheduled participation in the Jaguar Classic, hosted by South Alabama, for similar reasons… the Cal Golden Bears chopped a scheduled 4-game weekend with dual doubleheaders and instead played single games against a pair of opponents due to a player shortage… North Florida continued in their roles as co-hosts of a weekend tournament, but the Ospreys pulled out of participating in the tournament due to a positive test within the program… Gardner Webb did not participate in the Easton Bama Bash due to protocols, and Florida A&M and Cal Poly both remain on previously-announced pauses from game action.
Four Oklahoma players were confirmed as absent for the Sooners’ weekend trip to Houston due to contact tracing protocols; Patty Gasso’s club had to play without Nicole Mendes, Taylon Snow, Jana Johns, and Brooke Vestal on their trip to Houston.
Hot Out of the Gate
Of the teams that are new to Division I this season, we have seen mixed showings in their debuts at this new level. UC San Diego, though, was the first to begin their D1 tenure with a 1-0 record. The Tritons pulled off their inaugural victory in exciting fashion; a tie ball game in the 7th sent the matchup to extra innings, and Patti Gerckens’ squad took home the W with a walk-off suicide squeeze in the 11th inning. Robyn Wampler threw all eleven innings for UCSD, gave up five hits and two earned runs, and collected a pair of strikeouts.
Tied at the Top
Samford infielder Whitney Hinton tied the program’s home run record against Jacksonville State on Saturday, knocking her 35th career longball. A two-time all-conference selection, it was Hinton’s first home run of the still-young season. She’ll take sole possession of first place with her next roundtripper.
The week’s biggest upsets, presented in no particular order…
- Iowa State 9, Missouri 8
- Nevada 8, Washington 5
- Longwood 3, Georgia 2
- Colorado State 7, Texas A&M 6
- Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 5, Wichita State 1
- Miami OH 2, Tennessee 0
- Southern Illinois 6, Mississippi State 5
The First One is the Tough One
This weekend’s games included the first career head coaching win for five coaches across the nation. For Kirin Kumar (Miami OH) and Megan Brown (Longwood), the inaugural win came as a major upset over an SEC foe. Chelsea Spencer’s Cal squad came from behind against Saint Mary’s to put her in the win column for the first time. Hired just one month ago, Christi Musser got her first victory at Charleston Southern against Cleveland State, and the most recent coach to get her first win was MJ Knighten, the nation’s youngest head coach, who led her San Diego Toreros to a 1-0 victory over Cal State Fullerton in a Monday afternoon face-off.