Salukis host Evansville for series finale

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    April 22, 2013

    Southern Illinois (20-24, 8-10 MVC) vs. Evansville (19-25, 10-9 MVC)
     Date Tuesday, April 23
     Time 5 p.m.
     Location Carbondale, Ill. – Charlotte West Stadium
     Audio/Video Streaming online at Saluki All-Access
     Game Notes Southern Illinois Get Acrobat Reader
     Game Tracker vs. Evansville
     Social Media @SIU_Softball

    CARBONDALE, Ill.— The Southern Illinois softball team hosts Evansville Tuesday at Charlotte West Stadium for the series finale between the two teams.

    SIU leads the all-time series between the two teams 52-21, but the Purple Aces swept a doubleheader last week to assure their first regular season series win over the Salukis since 2002. Evansville has never had a three-game sweep of SIU. The Aces enter the matchup as one of the MVC’s hottest teams, having won eight of their last 11 Valley games and taken four consecutive MVC series. Tamra Robey leads UE with 51 hits, 30 runs scored and a batting average of .345. Victoria Dellorto (.263 avg, 36 hits) and Kendall Kautz (.246 avg, 34 hits) both lead the Aces with 30 RBI apiece. Sarah Patterson (12-8) is UE’s leading pitcher with 115 strikeouts and a 2.67 ERA.

    SIU dropped both games of a doubleheader with the Purple Aces on the road last Wednesday. The Salukis committed a season-high tying four errors in an 8-7 loss in the opener before recording just four hits and stranding 10 runners in a 4-2 loss in the nightcap.

    SIU dropped a three-game series to Creighton 2-1 over the weekend. The two teams went through seven scoreless innings in the opener before the Bluejays outscored the Salukis 6-5 in the eighth to take the walkoff win. SIU bounced back to win the second game 6-2 before Creighton took Sunday’s rubber match 5-0.

    Junior Taylor Orsburn has reached base in 15 consecutive games for the Salukis through Sunday. The Alto Pass, Ill., native carries a six-game hit streak into this week’s games, having recorded at least one hit in 12 out of SIU’s last 13 games. Orsburn ranks third on the team with 40 hits through last week.

    Two players had career-best hit streaks come to an end last week. Sophomore Kalyn Harker had an eight-game hit streak come to a close in the first game of Wednesday’s doubleheader against Evansville while junior Jayna Spivey had a 10-game hit streak end in the first game of Saturday’s twinbill at Creighton. Senior Morgan Barchan had SIU’s longest hit streak of the season with a 15-game streak that ended March 29 at Illinois State.

    Sophomore Kalyn Harker has been one of SIU’s strongest offensive players thus far in MVC play. The Lebanon, Ind., native has a team-best .373 batting average with 22 hits in Valley play, and is tied for second on the team with 15 RBI. She also leads SIU with a .593 slugging percentage on a team-best eight extra base hits in MVC play. One of SIU’s most athletic players, Harker has also been a defensive stopper with several key putouts in center field via highlight reel catches.

    Senior outfielder Morgan Barchan enters the week ranked second in the MVC with 55 hits for the season. She sits four hits shy of entering the SIU Top 10 list for hits in a season. The Arcadia, Calif., native ranks fourth in the MVC with a team-leading .372 batting average. Southern’s leadoff hitter, Barchan leads SIU with a .469 on-base percentage and also ranks fourth in the MVC with 38 runs scored.

    Saluki junior Jayna Spivey leads SIU and is tied for second in the MVC with 11 home runs, which ties her career best and ranks tied for seventh in SIU history. Her 29 career home runs rank fourth in SIU history.

    In addition to her home run prowess, Spivey has been one of SIU’s most consistent run producers this season. She leads the Salukis and ranks third in the MVC with 41 RBI. Her 20 RBI in MVC play is the league leader. Spivey is also second on the team with 42 hits and 34 runs scored. Her .610 slugging percentage leads the team and her .309 batting average is second among SIU’s everyday players.

    SIU’s game last Wednesday at UT Martin marked SIU head coach Kerri Blaylock’s 750th game as a head coach, all of which were at SIU. Blaylock picked up her 500th career coaching win on March 21 with SIU’s doubleheader sweep of Saint Louis. In her 14th season, the Saluki skipper sits at 508-250 overall. She is the second SIU coach and the eighth MVC coach to reach the 500-win milestone. Her career .670 winning percentage is the highest among the MVC’s 500-win coaches.

    SIU is up to 33 homers for the season, which ranks third in the MVC. That total ties the team’s long ball tally from last season. SIU’s 19 home runs in MVC games is tied for the league lead. Six Saluki players (Michelle Bradley, Morgan Barchan, Kalyn Harker, Taylor Orsburn, Jayna Spivey and Meredith Wilson) have either equaled or bettered their home run totals from last season.

    Southern enters the week leading the MVC in drawing free bases with a combined 228 free bases via walks and hit-by-pitches. The Salukis rank second behind Illinois State for the MVC’s lead in bases on balls with 180, and the Salukis’ 48 free bases on hit by pitches is the league leader by 12.

    Jayna Spivey’s walkoff grand slam April 13 against Missouri State marked SIU’s fifth grand slam of the season, which ties a program record for grand slams in a season. SIU also hit five grand slams in 2011. Meredith Wilson already has two grand slams for SIU this season, something last accomplished by Christina Trapani in 2011.

    Junior catcher Allie VadeBoncouer has drawn 20 free bases on hit-by-pitch this season. She is tied for fifth in the nation in HBPs through the NCAA’s most recent stats report. VadeBoncouer led the nation last season with 28 hit-by-pitches. She has been hit by 52 total pitches in her career.