Southern Illinois at Missouri State: Game Notes and Links

    Allie VadeBoncouer is third in NCAA history in career hit-by-pitches with 63 after wearing on against SLU on Wednesday.

    Allie VadeBoncouer is third in NCAA history in career hit-by-pitches with 63 after wearing on against SLU on Wednesday.
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    March 28, 2014

    SIU (14-13, 3-2 MVC) at Missouri State (18-10, 1-2 MVC)
     Dates March 29-30, 2014
     Times Saturday, March 29
    Game 1: 12 p.m.
    Game 2: 2 p.m.

    Sunday, March 30
    Game 3: 12 p.m.

     Location Springfield, Mo. -- Killian Stadium (1,200)
     Live Stats Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3
     Live Stream Saluki All-Access: Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3
     Live Audio Saluki All-Access: Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3
     Game Notes Southern Illinois | Missouri State | MVC
     Season Stats Southern Illinois | Missouri StateMVC
     All-Time Series SIU leads, 43-38
     Series Streak SIU W3
     Social Media @SIU_Softball   |  @SIU_Softball   |  Saluki Athletics 

    Southern Illinois heads to Springfield, Mo., for a three-game set with Missouri State on March 29-30. The three-game set will conclude with SIU's fifth-straight game on the road and is in the middle of a stretch of six road games in seven tilts before SIU comes home for 10 home games in its next 13. SIU swept Drake last weekend to improve its MVC record to 3-2, and a sweep over Missouri State would mark back-to-back three-game MVC sweeps for SIU for the first time since sweeping Bradley and Indiana State in back-to-back series in 2011. The third game of the series will be head coach Kerri Blaylock's 800th career game as SIU's head coach.

    The Salukis hold a slim 43-38 series lead over Missouri State but have dominated the series in recent years. SIU swept three games between the schools last year and have won 10 of the last 11 games in the series overall, losing only one game since the 2008 season. Despite SIU's 10 wins, the series has been competitive in recent years, with SIU winning six of those games by two runs or fewer, including 7-5 and 5-4 wins last season.

    The Last Meeting
    Missouri State4  
    Southern Illinois5(9)
    April 14, 2013
    Carbondale, Ill.
    Salukis top Missouri State 5-4, complete series sweep
    Jayna Spivey's second walkoff hit in as many days gave the Southern Illinois softball team a 5-4 win over Missouri State in nine innings Sunday afternoon, and with it a 3-0 series sweep of the Bears.

    Southern Illinois has won four of its last five games. Last weekend, SIU swept Drake in a three-game series to improve its MVC record to 3-2. In the mid-week games, SIU split a doubleheader with Saint Louis on Wednesday. Southern was no-hit in the opening game before the offense exploded for nine runs in the second game. Katie Bertelsen got two wins in the sweep at Drake, including a complete game shutout in the opening game of the series. She pitched another gem in the first game at SLU, allowing only one earned run in seven innings.

    Missouri State went 1-2 in its MVC-opening series against Bradley. The third game of the series was postponed and pushed back to March 20. In between, the Bears went on a three-game winning streak against Northern Colorado and a doubleheader over UMKC.

    Missouri State was the No. 5 team in the preseason MVC poll. Its 18 overall wins are tied with Wichita State for the most in the Valley. MSU has won six-straight non-MVC games but went 1-2 in its conference-opening series against Bradley.

    Missouri State is led by its pitching, which leads the MVC in ERA with a 2.96 team ERA--the only team in the conference under a 3.00 ERA. Opponents are batting just .263 against the Bears, which ranks them second in the conference. Chelsea Jones leads the Bears with a .347 average, and Bethany Sullinger (.325) and Kerri Cunningham (.308) join Jones as the three Bears with batting averages above .300. Sullinger supplies the power in the lineup, hitting five home runs so far this year and racking up 25 RBIs.

    SIU senior Allie VadeBoncouer was hit by a pitch in the second inning of the first game at Saint Louis on Wednesday. With the HBP, VadeBoncouer moved up to third in NCAA history in career hit-by-pitches, wearing 63 HBPs in her four-year SIU career. VadeBoncouer led the nation in HBPs in 2012 with 28, which ranked sixth for a single-season in NCAA history, and she added 23 more HBPs last season. She has eight so far in 2014. VadeBoncouer needs just five more HBPs to move into second place in NCAA history. The two players in front of her are Myesha Finney of Auburn (2006-09), who had 67 career HBP, and Mariah Gearhart (2008-11) of Oklahoma State, who blows away the field with 92 career HBPs.

    SIU senior Jayna Spivey is just one RBI away from tying SIU's record for career RBIs, which is currently shared by Jamie Schuttek (1994-97) and Alicia Garza (2007-10). Schuttek and Garza each reached 132 career RBIs, and Spivey has 131 after getting four in last weekend's sweep of Drake. Last year, Spivey tied Schuttek's 1997 season for the sixth-most single-season RBIs with 44. Another current Saluki, Allie VadeBoncouer, holds the single-season record with 51 RBIs in 2012, while Taylor Orsburn holds third place on the single-season list with 49 RBIs in 2011. Orsburn isn't far behind Spivey in career RBIs; with 119 career RBIs, Orsburn is tied for eighth on the school's all-time list, and VadeBoncouer (95 career RBIs) is knocking on the door of the top-10.

    SIU junior Katie Bertelsen has been lights out for the Salukis in her last four appearances, which coincided with the start of MVC play. In those four appearances, Bertelsen has a 1.27 ERA and three complete games. In the MVC opener against UNI, Bertelsen went pitch-for-pitch with 2012 MVC Pitcher of the Year Jamie Fisher, dropping a 2-1 game in 10 innings. She followed that up with a complete game shutout a week later against Drake and added another win a day later against Drake. Bertelsen pitched another gem on Wednesday against Saint Louis, allowing only one earned run in seven innings.

    Did you know?
    Katie Bertelsen and Taylor Orsburn have a combined 0.96 ERA in 43.2 innings since MVC play started against UNI.

    SIU senior first baseman Taylor Orsburn, pitching for the first time in her SIU career, has a 1.58 ERA in 31 innings this year. Hitters are hitting just .226 against her on the season. Since MVC play started, she's been even better, posting an 0.44 ERA in 16 innings in her last four appearances. Orsburn had a 15-inning scoreless streak heading into the seventh inning of SIU's 9-3 win at SLU on Wednesday before giving up an earned run in the blowout. For good measure, she's added three doubles at the plate in that span.

    True freshman Shaye Harre has jumped right in and been one of the best hitters in the conference from the start of her career. Harre's older cousin, Amy, is one of SIU's all-time great pitchers, but Shaye Harre has shown her potential from the batter's box. Harre ranks eighth nationally among freshman in RBIs per game as of the last NCAA stat report last Monday and, along with Jayna Spivey, has led SIU to the No. 24 rank nationally out of 288 schools in doubles per game. Harre leads the team in home runs (3), RBIs (29), slugging percentage (.592) and triples (2), and she's done all that despite hitting just .194 with five RBIs in her first 13 games. In the 14 games since, Harre has hit .425 and slugged .850. She has on OBP of .529, six doubles, a triple, two home runs and 24 RBIs in those 14 games alone. Harre is hitting an incredible .727 (8-for-11) with a runner on third base and less than two outs.

    Through 13 games, preseason All-MVC selection Jayna Spivey was hitting just .237 and coming off an 0-for-3, three-strikeout performance against Kansas. In the next 12 games, Spivey went on a tear, raising her batting average to .314 and reaching base in all 12 games, which is a career high. In those 12 games games, Spivey hit 17-for-42 (.415), and with eight walks and a HBP in that span, Spivey's OBP was .520. She hit five doubles and two home runs while driving in 12 runs.

    Jayna Spivey is on the verge of taking SIU's all-time lead in RBIs, but she's also knocking on the door for other top-10 lists. Spivey is four runs away from jumping into the top 10 in career runs scored; she currently has 109 career runs. She is tied for 10th in career doubles; she currently has 30 career doubles. And she's already in fourth place on the school's all-time home run list with 31 career homers. Spivey's next home run will tie Katie Wilson for third place in school history, and she is nine HRs away from the school's all-time lead.

    Lineup Quick Notes
     1 Merri Anne Patterson Played in 19 games, starting 3 ... First career RBIs at SLU ... 2-3 stolen bases ... Started last game @ SLU
     2 Allie VadeBoncouer .494 OBP ... Career-long 11-game on-base streak ... 3rd in NCAA history w/ 63 career HBP (8 in 2014)
     3 Jayna Spivey .314 BA ... .417 BA in 12G stretch from 3/7-3/23 ... 2nd at SIU in career RBIs (131) and 4th in HRs (31)
     4 Kelsea Ashton Played in all 27 games, starting 24 at 3b ... Has one double and one triple
     5 Lacey Newbold Has played in 23 games, primarily as a pinch runner ... 5-for-6 in stolen bases ... Scored 12 runs
     6 Jessa Thomas Played in 7 games and started 6 ... Has not committed an error ... Looking for her first career hit
     7 Kelsey Gonzalez 3rd on team with .313 BA ... Has a hit in 5 of last 7 games ... 3 doubles and 1 HR ... 5-5 SB
     10 Caylee Cook Played in 23 games, starting 15 ... Has hit 2 HR ... Had HR rule out vs. UNI due to sub infraction
     11 Michelle Glenn .291 average and .426 OBP ... Team-best 9-9 SB ... Started 20 games and played in 24
     12 Kalyn Harker .300 avg ... 5-9 in last three games ... 4 RBIs in 2nd game at SLU ... .407 avg. w/ RISP ... 5-6 SB
     17 Kara Kimball Played in 21 games primarily as a pinch runner ... 1-1 SB ... Scored 10 runs
     20 Taylor Orsburn .253 average ... Has allowed only 1 ER in last 16 innings (0.44 ERA) ... 4th in SIU history in doubles (37)
     24 Alyssa Wunderlich 3-4 record ... 6.39 ERA ... 31 IP ... 18 SO ... Went 4.2 IP scoreless 3/8 vs. St. Joseph's
     25 Shaye Harre Team-best .316 BA, 592 slg% and 3 HR ... 8th in nation among freshmen in RBIs (29) ... .727 avg. w/runner on 3rd & LT 2 outs
     27 Katie Bertelsen 1.24 ERA in last four app. (3 CG) ... CG SHO vs. Drake ... Team-best 6 Ws ... 2-1 in MVC play
     28 Taylor Harris Played in 20 games and started 10 ... In a 1-14 slump ... Singled and scored in G3 vs. Drake ... 3-7 as a pinch hitter
     33 Meredith Wilson Preseason All-MVC ... Broke out of 1-11 slump with 2B at SLU ... Started 21 games ... 1.000 field %
     40 Brook Womack Has played in 14 games, starting 5 ... Has scored 3 R and has 1 RBI

    SIU has outscored its opponents 146-120 this year, but opponents have outscored the Salukis in three of seven innings. However, Southern has absolutely dominated the middle innings, outscoring opponents a combined 50-15 in the fourth and fifth innings this year and 101-56 in the third-sixth innings. SIU has scored its most runs in the third inning with 33.

    Senior catcher Allie VadeBoncouer is on fire to start the 2014 campaign. VadeBoncouer has a .288 batting average and an amazing .494 on-base percentage, which ranks second in the conference. She has drawn 16 walks and been hit by pitch eight times so far in 2014. She is currently riding a career-long 11-game on-base streak, which one away from tying Jayna Spivey and Meredith Wilson for the longest streak of the season.

    SIU junior Kalyn Harker has gone 5-for-9 in her last three games, including a 3-for-4 outing in the second game of the SLU doubleheader. Not traditionally an RBI hitter, Harker has piled up six of her 12 RBIs in 2014 in those three games, including a four RBI game at SLU. With her hot streak in the last three games, Harker has raised her batting average from .255 to .300. Harker is hitting a team-leading .407 with runners in scoring position this year, going 11-for-27.

    Senior second baseman Jayna Spivey has been named a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award. Spivey is a 2013 Capital One Academic All-District selection and First-Team Missouri Valley Conference Scholar-Athlete who holds a 3.761 cumulative GPA in biological sciences. The Rosiclare, Ill. recorded 44 RBI's in 2013 to lead the Missouri Valley Conference, which ties as the sixth-best season in SIU history. She also led SIU with 12 multi-RBI games and ranked second in the MVC with 11 home runs, which is tied for seventh in school history. Thirty NCAA softball student-athletes who excel both on and off the field were selected as candidates today for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award® in collegiate softball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.

    SIU's game on April 10, 2013 at UT Martin marked SIU head coach Kerri Blaylock's 750th game as a head coach, all of which were at SIU. Blaylock also picked up her 500th career coaching win on March 21, 2013 with SIU's doubleheader sweep of Saint Louis. In her 15th season, the Saluki skipper sits at 525-265 overall. She is the second SIU coach and the eighth MVC coach to reach the 500-win milestone. Her career .664 winning percentage is the highest among the MVC's 500-win coaches. She will coach her 800th career game--all of them at SIU--in the finale of the three-game set with Missouri State.

    The official Twitter of Saluki softball is @SIU_Softball. This account features team news as well as live in-game updates. Fans can also follow Saluki Athletics @SIUSalukis for news on all SIU sports.

    SALUKI NEWS ONLINE is the official website for SIU Athletics. It is the best source for up-to-date information on the Saluki softball team. Rosters, box scores, cumulative statistics, pre-game notes and other materials are available on the site. You will need Adobe Acrobat to read PDF files.

    Coverage for every Saluki softball game is available online though Saluki All-Access at A live audio stream will be available for every game and live video will be available for all home games. Saluki All-Access also has on-demand content for all 18 Saluki sports.