April 16, 2010
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - The UCF softball team is back on the road this weekend when it battles UAB in Conference USA action. The Knights and the Blazers will begin the three-game series at 2 p.m. ET Saturday, before concluding play Sunday at 1 p.m. ET., at the newly completed UAB Softball Field.
The Black and Gold enters the weekend atop the C-USA standings with a 10-4 record after sweeping Marshall last weekend on the road. The three-game series win against the Thundering Herd was the third for UCF this season, having also swept Houston at home and Southern Miss on the road. The three C-USA sweeps matches the Knights' season-best, having also swept series against Tulsa, Marshall and Memphis in 2008.
UAB trails just behind the Black and Gold in second place in league standings with an 8-4 record heading into the weekend. The Blazers have won series against Marshall and East Carolina, while also earning a series sweep against Houston earlier this month. In April, UAB has posted a 9-4 record, which includes five-straight wins to open the month.
The Knights hold a 3-4 clip in April, but have won their last three contests on the road. Overall, the Black and Gold has been flawless on the road holding a perfect 7-0 record in true road games.
In those road contests, senior Ashleigh Cole (Pace, Fla.) has earned five wins in the circle, posting a 0.62 ERA, a .180 opponent batting average and two shutouts in 34 innings pitched. The hurler has allowed only three earned runs on the road, while striking out 21 batters.
On the season, Cole ranks 33rd nationally in ERA (1.49) and 34th in wins (16), while also ranking 55th in the NCAA in least amount of hits allowed per seven innings (5.04).
Also among the nation's best in 2010 are both junior Tiffany Lane (Moreno Valley, Calif.) and sophomore Natalie Land (Mayo, Fla.). Lane is currently fourth in triples (6) and 12th in triples per game (0.15), while Land is No. 15 nationally in sacrifice hits per game (0.29) and 90th in stolen bases per game (0.36).
Lane enters the weekend series with a 10-game hitting streak, which is the longest for both the shortstop and the Knights this season. The streak is only one game short of her career-high of 11-straight contests with a hit and five games short of matching the program record of 15-consecutive games with a hit accomplished by Breanne Javier
Also entering the weekend with an impressive streak is freshman Marissa Menendez (Tampa, Fla.), as she has posted a hit in each of UCF's last six contests. During the stretch, Menendez has hit .400 with eight hits, a double, her first career home run, four RBI and two runs scored.
The freshman looks to help the Black and Gold improve its record in the all-time series with UAB this weekend, as the series is knotted, 6-6.
Season tickets for the 2010 season are only $40 and are on sale now, while single-game tickets are also available for purchase. Tickets can be purchased online at UCFAthletics.com or through the Athletics Ticket Office by calling (407) 823-1000.
For the latest news on the Knights, log on to www.UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit www.UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.