LSU Softball Report - April 9

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LSU Softball Report - April 9

Overall Record: 29-10 [11-3 SEC]

Last Week: 2-2
April 4 – Nicholls State [W, 6-1]
April 6 – at No. 2 Alabama [L, 6-0]
April 7 – at No. 2 Alabama [W, 3-2]
April 8 – at No. 2 Alabama [L, 6-0]

This Week:
April 11 – at Southeastern Louisiana [Hammond, 6 p.m.]
April 13 – at No. 10 Tennessee [Knoxville, Tenn. – 5 p.m. CT]
April 14 – at No. 10 Tennessee [Knoxville, Tenn. – 11 a.m. CT televised by ESPN]
April 15 – at No. 10 Tennessee [Knoxville, Tenn. – 3 p.m. CT televised by ESPN]

Nominee for Player of the Week

Ashley Langoni, LF, Sr., Pueblo, Colorado 
Langoni continued her strong senior season as both of her hits went for extra bases. She provided a spark for the Tigers and blasted a two-run home run during the first inning of LSU’s 3-2 victory at No. 2 Alabama. It also was her 29th career homer, which pulled her one away from tying Quinlan Duhon for the No. 4 spot on the LSU program list. The senior left fielder drew six walks and became only the third player in program history to eclipse the century mark in that category. She is three free passes away from matching the LSU single-season record set by former All-American Ashlee Ducote in 2000.

Nominee for Pitcher of the Week

Rachele Fico, P, Jr., Oxford, Connecticut
Fico became only the second pitcher during the 2012 season to defeat No. 2 Alabama. She accomplished the impressive feat on the biggest of stages in-front of a Rhoads Stadium record crowd of 3,521 spectators. The junior right-hander recorded six of her nine strikeouts and retired nine of the final 11 batters she faced over the final three innings. Entering the series, the high-octane Crimson Tide offense paced the SEC in 11 different categories and was ranked third nationally averaging 7.61 runs per game. Fico’s sparkling pitching performance ended a 13-game winning streak by the home team in the series and gave LSU its first win in Tuscaloosa dating back to the 2006 season. The Oxford, Connecticut, native has now won her last seven decisions dating back to March 16. It was her 48th career victory, which allowed Fico to move into sole possession of seventh place on LSU’s all-time list.    

Notes on the Tigers
No. 24 LSU became only the second team during the 2012 season to defeat No. 2 Alabama and split its four games last week. The Tigers have won 26 of their last 32 games dating back to February 19 highlighted by a season’s long 12-game run which ran from March 16-April 4. LSU is currently one-game behind the Crimson Tide in the loss column at the top of the SEC Western Division standings. For the season, the Tigers have posted an impressive 159-29 advantage during its 29 wins fueled by 17 shutouts. LSU grinded out a 3-2 triumph over Alabama during the middle game of the series in-front of a Rhodes Stadium record crowd of 3,521 fans. The Tigers used a solid effort in all three phases of the game. Offensively, Ashley Langoni ripped a two-run home run during the first inning. It was her team-leading sixth dinger of the season and 29th for her career. She moved one homer behind equaling Quinlan Duhon (2005-08) for fourth place on LSU’s all-time list. Rachele Fico turned in a masterful gem in the circle. She finished the game in-style and retired nine of the last 11 batters she faced sparked by six strikeouts over the final three innings. Defensively, Morgan Russell threw out Jennifer Fenton attempting to steal second base. It marked the first time Fenton was mowed down on the base paths since March 13, 2010, a span of a NCAA-record 74 consecutive steals. The Tigers also received the final out of the game in-style when Kaila Braud’s chopping bunt attempt was fielded by third baseman Tammy Wray, who fired a strike to second baseman Allison Falcon covering first base to get the speedy Braud by a step. The victory halted a 13-game winning streak by the home team in the LSU-Alabama rivalry dating back to the 2007 season, and marked the Tigers first win in Tuscaloosa since 2006. LSU concludes its season series with a trip to in-state foe Southeastern Louisiana [Wednesday – 6 p.m.] before traveling to face No. 10 Tennessee [Friday – 5 p.m. CT; Saturday – 11 a.m. CT televised by ESPN; Sunday – 3 p.m. CT televised by ESPN].

USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Poll

Rank Team Record Points Previous
1. California (29) 36-1 749 1
2. Alabama (1) 37-2 715 2
3. Florida 32-4 655 6
4. Arizona State 35-4 648 7
5. Texas 32-4 612 3
6. Oklahoma 32-5 608 5
7. Washington 33-6 572 4
8. Louisiana-Lafayette 33-1 552 8
9. Missouri 30-6 501 11
10. Tennessee 31-9 487 10
11. Georgia 30-8 479 9
12. Louisville 33-2 417 12
13. Arizona 25-10 360 17
14. Hawaii 32-4 341 15
15. Stanford 28-10 302 14
16. UCLA 25-10 285 13
17. Texas A&M 27-11 276 16
18. USF 36-5 267 18
19. Oregon 25-8 256 19
20. Michigan 27-10 186 20
21. Florida State 35-8 140 21
22. LSU 29-10 106 24
23. Baylor 26-13 92 22
24. North Carolina 27-10 89 23
25. Oregon State 26-10 32 25

Others receiving votes: Tulsa 8, Georgia Tech 7. DePaul 3, New Mexico 2, two others received votes, but only appeared on one ballot.