Salukis Set to Host Pair of Midweek Contests

    Michelle Glenn threw a runner out at home from left field and then scored the game-winning run against Illinois State on Sunday.

    Michelle Glenn threw a runner out at home from left field and then scored the game-winning run against Illinois State on Sunday.
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    April 7, 2014

    SIU (17-17, 5-6 MVC) vs. Southeast Missouri (7-22, 2-9 OVC)
     Date April 8, 2014
     Time 5 p.m. CST
     Location Carbondale, Ill. -- Charlotte West Stadium (500)
     Live Stats
     Live Stream Saluki All-Access
     Live Audio Saluki All-Access
     Game Notes Southern Illinois | MVC
     Season Stats Southern Illinois | SEMOMVC
     All-Time Series SIU leads, 76-28-1
     Series Streak SIU L1
     Social Media @SIU_Softball   |  @SIU_Softball   |  Saluki Softball 

    SIU (17-17, 5-6 MVC) vs. Eastern Illinois (26-11, 7-4 OVC)
     Date April 9, 2014
     Time 4 p.m. CST
     Location Carbondale, Ill. -- Charlotte West Stadium (500)
     Live Stats
     Live Stream Saluki All-Access
     Live Audio Saluki All-Access
     Game Notes Southern Illinois | MVC
     Season Stats Southern Illinois | EIUMVC
     All-Time Series SIU leads, 33-30
     Series Streak SIU L1
     Social Media @SIU_Softball   |  @SIU_Softball   |  Saluki Softball 

    Southern Illinois is closing out a five-game home stand with two midweek games against Southeast Missouri and Eastern Illinois on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively. The Salukis will battle SEMO on Tuesday at 5 p.m. at Charlotte West Stadium, and Eastern Illinois comes to town on Wednesday for a 4 p.m. showdown. SIU lost to both schools last year in midweek play and are looking to turn around its midweek results after going 2-5 in non-conference midweek games last year during the MVC season. So far in 2014, SIU is 2-1, splitting a doubleheader with Saint Louis before run-ruling Murray State last Tuesday.

    The Salukis and SEMO have a long-standing rivalry, and the teams have played 105 games already against each other. SIU has dominated the series, winning 76 of those contests, but each of the last two matchups between the schools has been competitive. Southern won a 7-6 contest in 2012 before SEMO put up 14 runs and got a win last year in Cape Girardeaux, 14-7.

    The Salukis and Eastern Illinois have played an incredibly competitive 63-game series, with SIU holding a slim 33-30 lead in the overall series. Eastern Illinois one-hit and run-ruled Southern last year in Charleston, Ill., 8-0 in five innings. In 2012, it was SIU who run-ruled Eastern, winning a 10-2 decision in five innings. In that game, Allie VadeBoncouer and Taylor Orsburn each went 3-for-4, and VadeBoncouer had five RBIs.

    Southern Illinois has played around .500 softball for the entire season. SIU is 4-4 in its last eight games, and it had a winning or losing streak longer than three games all season. In fact, Southern hasn't been more than two games above or below the .500 mark all season.

    Southeast Missouri has lost 15 of its last 17 games, including five-straight and eight of its last nine. SEMO played two close ballgames with Tennessee State this past weekend but dropped the games 4-3 and 3-1.

    Eastern Illinois has won six of its last eight games and is coming off a two-game sweep of Morehead State. The Panthers, who are 26-11 on the season, have settled down in a 7-4 stretch recently, before which EIU had won nine of its last 10 games.

    Southeast Missouri has struggled this year on its way to a 7-22 record. The Redhawks have won just three times since Feb. 22, but SEMO has show the ability to explode offensively, with three of its seven wins coming in run-rule fashion.

    Savanna Carpenter leads a potent SEMO offense with an incredible .450 average. Carpenter has also posted a .725 slugging percentage and .511 on-base percentage, and she leads a SEMO offense with three regulars hitting over .300. In the circle, Hannah Durham, Keaira Schilling and Aubrey Denno have all had at least 20 appearances. Durham leads the way with a 3.30 ERA but just a 2-8 record, and the staff's ERA is at 5.08.

    Eastern Illinois has one of the best winning percentages SIU has faced this year. At 26-11, EIU has looked impressive in most phases of the game. The team boasts a .290 team batting average. After runners get on base, the Panthers have stolen 57 bases this year and scored five runs pe game. In the circle, the team ERA is just 2.59, led by Hanna Mennenga with a 1.96 ERA and a 15-4 overall record. EIU's second pitcher, Stephanie Maday, has a 2.32 ERA and a 10-5 overall record in 14 starts and 19 appearances, and Maday is coming off a no-hitter in EIU's 14-0 run-rule win over Morehead State on Sunday.

    Jayna Spivey earned MVC Player of the Week honors after she hit 9-for-13 (.692) with three doubles, a home run and six RBIs last week. She posted a 1.154 slugging percentage and hit the game-winning two-run double in the bottom of the seventh inning to beat Illinois State. Spivey had all five RBIs in SIU's 5-4 win on Sunday, and her six RBIs for the week increased her school-record total to 141, good for eighth in MVC history and just five away from jumping into the top-five in MVC history. Spanning all three games of the series with Illinois State, Spivey recorded a hit in seven-consecutive at-bats. She totaled 15 bases and scored two runs, as well, and raised her season batting average to .370 on the season.

    She is SIU's first MVC Player of the Week since teammate Allie VadeBoncouer earned the honor on April 23, 2012. The honor is the first of her carer for the three-time All-MVC selection.

    Through 11 games, SIU senior Jayna Spivey is dominating in MVC play. She's hitting .556 (20-for-36) with astronomical slugging (.917) and on-base percentage (.628) numbers. Sixteen of her 30 RBIs this season have come in the 11 conference games, and she's committed just one error in conference play. She's totaled five doubles, a triple, two home runs, seven runs scored and 33 total bases. The senior has broken SIU's career RBI record and ranks eighth in MVC history in career RBIs, just five away from breaking into the top-five in conference history.

    SIU senior Allie VadeBoncouer leads the Missouri Valley Conference in on-base percentage at .509. VadeBoncouer is hitting .278 this year and has just half as many hits (20) as SIU's leader Jayna Spivey (40). In face, VadeBoncouer has walked (22) more times than she's gotten a hit (20), and she's added 12 hit-by-pitches on top of that. All told, VadeBoncouer's .509 OBP this late in the season puts her in the hunt for a second career .500 on-base percentage season after posting a .505 OBP as a sophomore in 2012. All told, VadeBoncouer has an amazing career OBP of .454 in more than 550 career plate appearances.

    Did you know?
    Jayna Spivey ranks in the top-10 in the MVC in batting average, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, runs scored, hits, RBIs, doubles and total bases. She leads the MVC in doubles (13).

    SIU senior Allie VadeBoncouer was hit by a pitch for the 12th time this year in last weekend's series with Illinois State. That marks the 67th time in her career that VadeBoncouer has been hit by a pitch, tying her for second in NCAA history. With her next HBP, VadeBoncouer will pass Auburn's Myesha Finney (2006-09) for sole possession of second place on the NCAA's all-time HBP list. VadeBoncouer probably will have to settle for second on the list; the NCAA's career leader, Mariah Gearhart of Okahoma State (2008-11) blows away the field with an amazing 92 career HBPs.

    Michelle Glenn came up huge in SIU's series finale with Illinois State on Sunday. With the bases loaded and two outs in the top of the sixth, Glenn threw out a runner trying to score from second at home to keep the game a one-run game. Then, in the bottom of the seventh inning, the speedster beat out a bunt single and then scored all the way from first on Jayna Spivey's walkoff double to win the game.

    Southern was no-hit in the first game of a doubleheader at Saint Louis, but the Salukis have been on fire at the plate since then. As a team, Southern has hit .318 in the eight games since they were no-hit and have raised the team batting average above .270 for the first time since March 9. Jayna Spivey is hitting a remarkable .538 in that span, and Kalyn Harker (.414), Michelle Glenn (.375), Kelsey Gonzalez (.316) and Shaye Harre (.304) are also hitting well.

    On the season, five SIU hitters have posted batting averages of better than .300--Spivey (.370), Harker (.318), Gonzalez (.313), Glenn (.310) and Harre (.302)--and that's not including Allie VadeBoncouer, who boasts a .509 on-base percentage.

    SIU senior Jayna Spivey broke the school record for career RBIs on a game-tying two-run double in the top of the seventh inning in the first game against Missouri State on Saturday. The record was shared by Jamie Schuttek (1994-97) and Alicia Garza (2007-10). Schuttek and Garza each reached 132 career RBIs, and Spivey now has 141 total, which is good for eighth in MVC history.

    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 124 career RBIs, Orsburn is fifth on the school's all-time list, and VadeBoncouer (97 career RBIs) is knocking on the door of the top-10.

    Jayna Spivey's name is already plastered all over the MVC and SIU record books, and she's again threatening to add her name on another record. Spivey has hit 13 doubles, which leads the conference and ranks 17th nationally. That's already tied for fifth in a single season in school history and just two away from tying teammate Taylor Orsburn's 2013 campaign for the all-time SIU lead. With five more doubles, Spivey will jump into the top-10 in MVC history in single-season doubles.

    Another Southern Illinois senior, Taylor Orsburn, is also among SIU's all-time RBI hitters. Orsburn hit a grand slam to center field that started SIU's 9-1 romp over Murray State on Tuesday. The four RBIs gave Orsburn 124 for her career, which tied her with Katie Wilson for fifth on SIU's all-time list.

    Orsburn and Spivey are both knocking on the door of SIU's top-10 career list in hits. Orsburn has 183 career hits and Spivey has 178. With four more hits from Orsburn and nine more hits from Spivey, both players will leave their careers among the top-10 hit producers in school history.

    With Spivey, Orsburn, and Harre batting in the heart of the order, Southern has one of the nation's best lineups for producing doubles. SIU ranks No. 21 nationally in doubles per game, led by Spivey, who ranks 17th.

    SIU junior Kalyn Harker has gone 12-for-29 (.414) in her last eight games, including a 3-for-4, 4 RBI outing in the second game of the SLU doubleheader. Not traditionally an RBI hitter, Harker has piled up 10 of her 16 RBIs in 2014 in those games. She's also gone a perfect 5-for-5 on stolen base attempts and scored six runs. With her hot streak in the last eight games, Harker has raised her batting average from .255 to .318. Harker is hitting a team-leading .441 with runners in scoring position this year, going 15-for-34.

    SIU junior Katie Bertelsen has emerged as the staff ace over the last month. In her first seven appearances after MVC play started, Bertelsen had a 1.83 ERA and threw six complete games in her seven starts. She threw a complete-game shutout in the series opener against Drake and allowed more than two earned runs only twice. She went pitch-for-pitch with 2012 MVC Pitcher of the Year Jamie Fisher of UNI in a 10-inning 2-1 loss and backed it up by only allowing six earned runs over her next 24 innings (2.14 ERA).

    Bertelsen has posted just a 3.17 ERA in MVC play and thrown five complete games. She's recorded the W in four of SIU's five conference wins. With 44 career wins, Bertelsen ranks eighth in SIU history and also ranks 10th in school history with 79 career appearances, 23 of which have come this year.

    SIU senior first baseman Taylor Orsburn, pitching for the first time in her SIU career, had a 1.95 ERA in her first 32.1 innings this year. In that span, she allowed hitters just a .242 average against her. To start MVC play, she was even better, posting an 1.21 ERA in her first 17.1 innings, which spanned five appearances. Hitters managed only a .215 average over that time. 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 and a grand slam 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 11th 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. 21 rank nationally out of 288 schools in doubles per game. Harre led the team in home runs (3), RBIs (32), slugging percentage (.580) and triples (2) before last weekend's series vs. Illinois State, and she's done all that despite hitting just .194 with five RBIs in her first 13 games.

    Through 13 games, two key cogs in the middle of the SIU lineup were struggling. Senior Jayna Spivey was hitting just .237 and freshman Shaye Harre was hitting .194. In the 21 games since, both players have been playing at an All-American level. Spivey is hitting .443 and has raised her average all the way to .370 for the season. She's posted an OBP of .524 and a slugging percentage of .743. She has 10 doubles, a triple, three home runs and 22 RBIs in that 21-game span alone. Harre has been nearly as good. She has hit .367 with a .480 OBP and .667 slugging percentage. She's hit seven doubles, a triple and three home runs in addition to her 27 RBIs in that span.

    Senior second baseman Jayna Spivey was named a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award. Spivey was 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 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, she is the second SIU coach and the eighth MVC coach to reach the 500-win milestone. Her career .663 winning percentage is the highest among the MVC's 500-win coaches. She coached her 800th career game--all of which have been at SIU--on March 30 at Missouri State.

    SIU has gone 5-1 on Sunday this year since the first weekend of the season, including a perfect 3-0 mark in MVC play. Each of the last two weekends, Southern has been swept in a doubleheader on Saturday only to come back and win the series finale on Sunday. Southern has won those games by an average of 3.5 runs per game. Eleven different Salukis are hitting better than .300 on Sundays, and seven players are hitting .400 or better.

    Southern Illinois gave its lineup a major shake-up in its midweek game last week against Murray State. For the first time in 25 games, Taylor Orsburn did not hit leadoff for the Salukis. Instead, Orsburn was moved down to the No. 5 hole. Kalyn Harker, who had hit .381 in the six games prior to Tuesday's contest, took over the leadoff duties, and both players played great in their new roles. Harker went 3-for-4 with two runs and 3 RBIs in the leadoff role, and Taylor Orsburn hit a grand slam to bust the game open in the third inning.

    Southern led the MVC in drawing free bases last season with a combined 259 free bases via walks and hit-by-pitches. The Salukis ranked second behind Illinois State for the MVC's lead in bases on balls with 201, and the Salukis' 58 free bases on hit by pitches was the league leader by 19.

    This year, the Salukis have continued the trend. Southern leads the conference in walks by 11 and ranks third in both hit-by-pitches and on-base percentage. As a result, the Salukis are second in the conference in runs scored and rank in the top-three in the MVC in nearly every offensive category.

    Lineup Quick Notes
     1 Merri Anne Patterson Played in 24 games, starting 4 ... First career RBIs at SLU ... 2-3 stolen bases ... Started last games @ SLU & @MSU
     2 Allie VadeBoncouer MVC-best .509 OBP ... Current 18-game reached-base streak ... t-2nd in NCAA history w/ 67 career HBP (12 in 2014)
     3 Jayna Spivey .370 BA ... .443 BA in last 21 games ... SIU career RBI leader and 8th in MVC history (141) ... t3rd in SIU HRs (32)
     4 Kelsea Ashton Played in all 34 games, starting 31 at 3b ... Has two doubles and one triple ... 7G reached-base streak ended vs. ILS
     5 Lacey Newbold Has played in 26 games, primarily as a pinch runner ... 6-for-7 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 ... Reached base in 13 of last 18 G ... 3 Sac Flys (21st nationally) ... 5-5 SB ... .522 avg. leading off inn.
     10 Caylee Cook Played in 27 games, starting 17 ... Has hit 2 HR and 3 doubles ... .400 success advancing runners
     11 Michelle Glenn .310 average and .437 OBP ... Team-best 11-11 SB ... Started 26 games and played in 30
     12 Kalyn Harker .318 avg ... .414 avg in last eight games ... 4 RBIs in 2nd game at SLU ... .441 avg. w/ RISP ... 8-9 SB
     17 Kara Kimball Played in 28 games, primarily as a pinch runner ... 2-2 SB ... Scored 11 runs
     20 Taylor Orsburn .246 average ... Also has 3.0 ERA ... 5th in SIU history in 2B (38) ... Hit grand slam vs. Murray State
     24 Alyssa Wunderlich 3-4 record ... 5.41 ERA ... 33.2 IP ... 19 SO ... Went 4.2 IP scoreless 3/8 vs. St. Joseph's
     25 Shaye Harre .367 avg & 27 RBIs in last 21 games ... 11th in nation among freshmen in RBIs/game (32) ... .714 avg. w/runner on 3rd & LT 2 outs
     27 Katie Bertelsen 1.83 ERA in 7 app. (6 CG) from 3/15 - 4/1 ... CG SHO vs. Drake ... Team-best 9 Ws ... 4-3 in MVC play
     28 Taylor Harris Played in 24 games and started 11 ... in a 1-19 slump ... Singled and scored in G3 vs. Drake ... 3-10 as pinch hitter
     33 Meredith Wilson Preseason All-MVC ... Broke out of 1-11 slump with 2B at SLU (5-16 since) ... Started 27 games ... 10 2-out RBIs
     40 Brook Womack Has played in 17 games, starting 5 ... Has scored 4 R and has 1 RBI
      SIU Team 14-2 with 6+ runs; 3-15 with 0-5 runs ... .334 team BA in wins; .204 BA in losses ... Outscored opp. 31-10 in 4th inn.
     HC Kerri Blaylock Coached her 800th career game--all at SIU--on March 30 @ Missouri St. ... Highest Win% among MVC 500-win coaches

    SIU softball has a new Facebook fan page at Fans who like the page will get links to follow games, promotions, and photos from the season.

    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.