Redhawks Cross the River to Face Salukis
March 6, 2006
Salukis (10-1) vs. Southeast Missouri (4-4)
The Southeast Missouri State softball team heads across the Mississippi River to face non-conference rival Southern Illinois University-Carbondale for a doubleheader on Tuesday, March 7 at Charlotte West Stadium. The first pitch for game one is set for 3:00 p.m. with game two slated to start at 5:00 p.m. Both games can be heard live via webcast at http://siusalukis.collegesports.com/multimedia/silu-softball06.html and can also be followed with live stats at http://www.siuc.edu/media/SBLivestats/xlive.htm
The Redhawks (4-4) head into the match-up after splitting their games at the Missouri State Spring Classic. The Redhawks won their two final tow games at the Classic by a combined score of 12-4 after falling to Missouri, 7-1 and Missouri State, 2-1 on day one.
McDonald leads the team with a .444 (8-for-18) average. She has four extra-base hits, including two home runs. She also has three RBI. McDonald, along with Jenn Monaghan and Michelle Summers, lead the team with two home runs each.
Summers, the team's leading homerun hitter last season, hit both her homeruns over the weekend.
Bradley isn't far behind McDonald as she enters the series with a .391 (9-for-23) average. She has two extra-base hits, both doubles, and four RBI.
Elaine Fisher leads the Redhawk pitching staff with a 1.26 ERA in 28.2 innings pitched. She has a team-high 30 strikeouts while giving up 20 hits and three walks.
She is coming off her second complete game shutout of the season as she blanked UMKC, 4-0 on Saturday. She struckout a career-high 12 batters in the contest while only allowing four hits.
For the Redhawks the doubleheader ends a 10-game road swing to open the season.
SCOUTING THE SALUKIS
Southern Illinois enters Tuesday's series with Southeast Missouri after picking up three wins over the weekend at the Kay Brechtelsbauer Southern Classic.
The Salukis improve to 10-1 on the season with the wins over Illinois-Chicago (5-2), #24 Iowa (2-1) and Northern Illinois (5-2). Though a few other ranked teams have been on SIU's schedule, Iowa was the first to face the Salukis because of weather cancellations.
SIU cruised to the wins, riding on the back of senior Katie Louis. Louis batted an amazing .857 (6-for-7) in the three games, including three doubles and a home run with four RBI. She accounted for the game-winning hit against Iowa with a double to the left field wall and the game-winning run against Northern Illinois.
All three Saluki pitchers picked up wins over the weekend. Junior Ashley Hamby picked up a win against Iowa and a save against Northern Illinois, relieving freshman Katie McNamara. McNamara picked up her first career win as a Saluki in the 5-2 victory over NIU.
Southern also passed one milestone with its wins while it nears another. The 5-2 win over UIC marked the 50th victory in Charlotte West Stadium, which opened for play in 2003.
The three victories also put head coach Kerri Blaylock's career wins total at 249, one win shy of 250.
The two teams continue one the longest rivalries for both teams. The Salukis lead the series all-time with a 71-28-1 record.
The Salukis has won ten straight versus SEMO under former Southeast assistant and alum Kerri Blaylock and the last 14 of 15 in her first six seasons at the helm of the Salukis. Last year the Salukis swept a doubleheader at the Southeast Softball Complex dropping game one 4-1 before falling in game two 1-0.
In the game two loss Elaine Fisher was marvelous in her relief appearance as she pitched four innings allowing no runs and allowing only one hit. In the top of the sixth Fisher struck out the side against the heart of the Saluki order. Redhawks were able to knock Saluki starter Ashley Hamby out of the game when she loaded the bases with two outs. Unfortunately the Salukis countered with All-American Amy Harre who would pitch the remaining 6.1 innings for the 1-0 shutout.