REBELS SET FOR THREE-GAME TILT AT FIRST-PLACE COLORADO STATE

UNLV will begin the second half of its Mountain West schedule in Fort Collins this weekend.

  • Friday, April 12 | 3 p.m. PT vs. Colorado State | Fort Collins, CO | Live Stats 
  • Saturday, April 13 | 12 p.m. PT vs. Colorado State | Fort Collins, CO | Live Stats  | Live Video
  • Sunday, April 14 | 11 a.m. PT vs. Colorado State | Fort Collins, CO | Live Stats  | Live Video
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) – The UNLV softball team will be back on the road this weekend for a pivotal Mountain West series at first-place Colorado State, who is 29-5 and 11-1 in league play through the first half of the conference schedule. The Rebels and Rams will square off Friday at 3 p.m. PT, Saturday at 12 p.m. PT and Sunday at 11 a.m. PT at Ram Field in Fort Collins, Colorado.
The Rebels are coming off a heartbreaking series loss to Fresno State at home last weekend that saw them fall in the series finale on a seventh-inning go-ahead home run. Despite the defeat, UNLV still has everything in front of them with four Mountain West series left to play.
At 29-6 and 7-4 in the MW, the Rebels are currently in fourth in the league standings, just one game behind second-place San Jose State and UNR, and three and half games behind the Rams. That makes this series a big one as UNLV looks to catch CSU for the league title. UNLV’s overall mark of 26-9 is tied for the third-best record through 35 games in program history and the best since 1996, when the team also went 26-9.
Colorado State has been the surprise of the Mountain West this season. After being picked to finish seventh in the preseason, CSU turned in a strong non-conference performance with wins over Stanford, Utah, No. 16 Oklahoma State and a close 3-0 loss to No. 1 UCLA. The Rams also reeled together 20 straight wins – the longest stretch in program history – until San Jose State ended the streak Sunday in their series finale with a 3-2 win.
Speaking of the Spartans, UNLV will return home next weekend, April 18-20, to host San Jose State in what will surely be another big series for both teams who are jockeying for position at the top of the standings. The Rebels will then welcome Cal Baptist the following Friday and Saturday for a three-game series on their bye week before heading north to Reno for their annual Silver State series showdown with UNR, May 3-5. UNLV will wrap up the regular season, May 9-11, hosting New Mexico on senior weekend at Eller Media Stadium.
QUICK HITTERS
•  The 26-9 record through 35 games is tied for third-best record through 35 games in program history with the 1996 squad. The 1995 squad owns the best mark and at 28-7 and the 1991 squad is second at 27-8
• UNLV has three wins over ranked teams (in USAToday/NFCA and/or USA Softball Top 25 poll) this year marking the first time since 2005 the Rebels have beaten three ranked teams in the same season; Stanford, was receiving votes in the two major polls when UNLV beat them twice
• The Rebels’ wins over Stanford marked the first time since 1995 UNLV had beat the same Pac-12 twice in the same season
• The sweep over SDSU, March 29-31, was the first three-game sweep over the Aztecs in program history and first series win in San Diego since 2005. Ninth series win over the Aztecs overall and just fourth time they’ve gone unbeaten in the regular season against SDSU [1986 (4-0), 1994 (2-0) and 2005 (4-0)]
• UNLV’s 17-inning showdown at SDSU on Sunday, March 31 was the longest game in the country this year (innings-wise) and was the third-longest game in program history program behind an 18-inning 2-1 loss to #14 Long Beach State on April 13, 1991 and a 20-inning 1-0 loss at Fresno State on April 24, 1987
• Fresno State handed the Rebels its first Mountain West series loss of 2019, April 5-7. The defeats in games two and three to Fresno State marked just the second time this year the UNLV had lost back-to-back games
• UNLV has winning streaks of six games and three different four-game win streaks this season, while its longest losing streak of two has only happened twice this year
• The Rebels need just seven wins to match last year’s total of 33 with 15 games still left to play
• Head coach Kristie Fox needs just seven wins to reach 200 in her head coaching career
• The offense has been strong in 2019, hitting .321 (ranks tied for 17th in the country) with 190 runs in 35 games, while UNLV has outscored its opponent 190-78 this season and have only been shut out four times
• UNLV has scored six or more runs in 18 of 35 games and are 18-0 in those games. The Rebels have been held to four hits or fewer just seven times this year
• UNLV has also been patient at the plate, drawing 111 walks in 35 games, and for the most part have been lights out with runners in scoring position as they hit .332 in those situations compared to .219 for their opponents. Unfortunately, against Fresno State, they weren’t as successful as they left 21 runners stranded over the two losses
• Pinch-hitting has been successful for Fox and the Rebels this year as they are hitting .327 (18-for-55) in those situations. Freshman Statia Cermak has been deadly in the role as she is 7-for-11 (.636)
• The defense has also been outstanding, committing just 23 errors in 35 games with a .977 fielding percentage, which currently ranks fifth in the country. The Rebels have committed more than one error in a game only three times this year and are 15-3 when they don’t commit an error
• Outside of a few hiccups, the pitching staff has been outstanding this year. The trio of Jenny Bressler, Charlie Masterson and Breana Burke have combined for a 2.00 ERA, which leads the MW and ranks 20th in the NCAA.
• Bressler, the 2018 Michigan Gatorade Player of the Year, has had a stellar start to her career going 16-4 with a 1.72 ERA. With five strikeouts in her last outing Sunday against Fresno State, she officially reached the century mark with 100 exactly on the year, first in the MW. Bressler earned her 16th win in the 7-0 series opening win vs Fresno State last weekend, but unfortunately suffered her fourth loss in the finale Sunday as the Bulldogs tagged her with a three-run homer in the seventh inning
• Burke, a junior, is also having a career year as she is now 6-3 with a sub-2.00 ERA of 1.77. She was tagged with the loss in game two against FS after she allowed three first-inning runs, but she was stolid after that with five scoreless frames to keep the Rebels within striking distance
• UNLV has allowed three runs or fewer in 25 of 35 games this year
• Scoring first and early has been key in 2019 as the Rebels are 21-2 when they score first and 20-1 when they lead after four innings. Sunday’s 5-3 loss to FS marked just the second time they’d loss after scoring first and when leading through four innings
• UNLV went 20-for-20 on stolen base attempts to start the season and is currently 43-48, far surpassing their season total of 31 a year ago. Juniors Lauren Tycksen and Reina Bondi each have 16 this year, a new career high for Bondi
• UNLV hit three home runs in the game-one win over Fresno State, including back-to-back jacks by Justine Federe and Mea Trejo in the first innings. The Rebels now have 24 home runs through 35 games after having just 20 in 53 total games last year
• Trejo saw her nine-game hitting streak come to an end Saturday vs FS, but she’s been stellar this season, especially during Mountain West play, as she’s hitting .500 with 18 RBI, two doubles, four home runs, 1 0 runs scored and 11 walks. For the season, she’s drawn a team-high 27 walks, 13 more than the next closest Rebel. She has been intentionally walked three times
• Another pair of hitting streaks came to an end this past weekend against Fresno State. Myranda Bueno’s six-game hitting streak ended at six game in the series opener, while Kiley Harrison’s nine-game streak came to a halt in Sunday’s finale
• Federe owns the Rebels’ longest hitting streak of the season at 15 games while Trejo, Harrison and junior Lauren Tycksen each have a nine-gamer under their belt
• Tycksen continues to be a consistent force at the plate. Her .400 average and 45 hits lead the team
• The Rebels have eight players hitting over .300 (Harrison, Bueno, Diaz, Trejo, Bondi, Federe, Cermak and Tycksen) including two over .400 (Cermak and Tycksen)
• Tycksen and fellow junior Reina Bondi have been a lethal 1-2 punch at the top of lineup, combining to go 82-for-213 (.384) with 70 runs scored and 30 RBI. The two have also combined to go 32-for-35 on stolen bases
• Returners Justine Federe, Mia Trejo, Myranda Bueno & Samantha Diaz have also been productive at the plate, going 141-for-403 (.349) with 71 runs scored, 15 home runs and 100 RBI
• Tycksen leads the way with 16 multi-hit games this season, while Bondi is second with 11. Trejo has a team-best 10 multi-RBI games
• Freshman Statia Cermak has made the most of her opportunities at the plate this season as she is 16-for-39 (.410), including 7-for-11 as a pinch-hitter
• Trejo earned her first career Mountain West Player of the Week award on April 2 after hitting .400 with five RBI, a three-run home run, four runs scored and five walks
• Bressler earned back-to-back Mountain West Pitcher of the Week honors on March 12 & March 19, becoming the first Rebel to win the award in back-to-back weeks since Amanda Oliveto in 2013
• Junior transfer Tycksen, who was an NFCA Junior College All-American at Salt Lake City Community College last spring, earned her first Mountain West Player of the Week award on Feb. 12 after hitting .625 with 10 runs scored, two triples, five RBI and five stolen bases. She was also named College Sports Madness’ Mountain West Player of the Week and was recognized as a Top Performer by the NFCA

RANKING THE REBELS
• Top 25 DI Polls: 

– On April 2, the Rebels received a vote in the ESPN/USA Softball Top 25 Poll for the second straight week and returned to the USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 Poll after receiving a vote in that one as well
– On. March 19, UNLV received 15 votes in the USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 Poll Tuesday, marking the first time since April 1, 2009 they had received votes in that poll
 RPI: UNLV debuted in the season’s first RPI at No. 36 on Monday, March 18. This week, they currently sit at No. 37.
 NCAA: The Rebels rank seventh in fielding percentage (.977); 17th in the country in batting average (.321); fifth in double plays per game (0.60), tied for 26th in win-loss percentage (.743) and 20th in ERA (2.00). Junior Lauren Tycksen is 46th in hits (48) and is tied with teammate Reina Bondi for 43rd in runs per game (1.00) and tied for 66th in stolen bases per game (0.46). Sophomore Mia Trejo is 38th in on-base percentage (.516) and 57th in runs batted in per game (1.03). Junior Justine Federe is tied for 14th in sacrifice flys (4). Freshman Jenny Bressler is 15th in wins (16) and 22nd in shutouts (5).
• Mountain West: Rebels rank at the top or near the top in most major offensive, pitching and defensive statistical categories. They rank first in hits (303), second in batting average (.321) and third in on-base percentage (.395), RBI (174) and tied for second in runs (190). UNLV ranks first in ERA (2.00), runs allowed (78), earned runs allowed (68) and walks allowed (67). They rank third in battters struck out (163) and batters struck out looking (55) and fourth in opposing batting average (.251). Defensively, UNLV’s .977 fielding percentage and 23 errors each rank first in the conference. Tycksen ranks first in hits (48), third in batting average (.400), tied for second runs scored (35) and tied for fourth in stolen bases (16). Reina Bondi also ranks tied second in run scored (35) and tied for fourth with 16 stolen bases, while Mia Trejo is first in on-base percentage (.516), second in RBI (36) and tied for second with seven home runs. Freshman Jenny Bressler and junior Breana Burke are 1-2 in the conference with a 1.72 and 1.77 ERA, respectively, while Bressler leads in innings pitched (126.1), strikeouts (100), batters struck out looking (36) and wins (16).