Boise State softball starts its week-long spring break road trip with a single game against Utah Valley and a doublehader at Utah.
The Broncos (18-10) will take on Utah Valley (6-14) Tuesday, in Provo, Utah. First pitch is scheduled for 11 a.m. (MT). The game was originally slated to be the Wolverines' home opener, but was moved to BYU due to renovations on their home park. UVU went 4-2 in its last action at the Great West Early Tournament.
The two-game set at Utah will start at 2 p.m. (MT) Wednesday, in Salt Lake City. The Utes (15-15) host the Broncos in their home opener. Utah is on a three-game win streak.
Boise State is 16-2 in its last 18 games, with both losses coming against top-five opponents at the Judi Garman Classic, and opened Western Athletic Conference play with a sweep over Nevada.
Live stats will be available for each game. For more information, check the schedule page at BroncoSports.com.
About the Broncos
Boise State softball is in its third season. Head coach Erin Thorpe and the Broncos return 15 letterwinners and eight starters from the 2010 squad that finished third in the Western Athletic Conference.
After a 2-8 start, Boise State posted a school-record 12-game winning streak behind dominant pitching. The Bronco pitching staff combined for a staggering 0.65 ERA in the last 10 games of the streak, a span that included a 41-inning scoreless streak.
The Broncos carried the momentum of the final three early-season tournaments into the first weekend of Western Athletic Conference action. Boise State swept Nevada to start 3-0 in conference play for the third-straight season.
Juniors Allie Crump and Aubray Zell lead the team in the circle. Crump sports a 9-4 record with a 4.39 ERA. Three of Crump's losses and nearly half of her earned runs have come at the hands of top-25 opponents. Zell is the hot hand for the Broncos, with a 6-1 record and a 1.65 ERA. Zell has not lost since Feb. 12, and earned the win in her last six decisions. In game two against Nevada, she allowed her first home run of the year, snapping a 34-inning scoreless streak.
Sophomore Lela Work has come on in relief 13 times this year, picking up an NCAA-best five saves (as of March 22). Work earned two wins in relief Saturday against Nevada.
Devon Bridges is enjoying a breakout freshman campaign, leading the Bronco offense. Bridges is batting .417 with eight home runs and 30 RBI, leading the team in each category. She has reached base safely in 18-consecutive games, including hitting home runs in each of the last three. Bridges has two grand slams this season, making her the only player with multiple career grand slams in school history.
Junior Kellie Caplan has been holding down the leadoff spot for Boise State the last 21 games. Caplan leads the team with 37 hits. She has collected a base hit in 22 of the Broncos' 28 games. Caplan already has 10 multi-hit games this season, including five games with three hits.
About Utah Valley
The Wolverines have righted the ship after a 1-12 start to enter the week at 6-14 overall. Utah Valley has allowed six or more runs in 11 games this season. The Broncos are 13-1 when scoring at least six runs.
Amanda Perez has been UVU's most dangerous weapon at the plate this season, batting .357 with six home runs and 22 RBI. Meghan Yocum is batting .404, playing 17 games on the year.
In the circle, the Wolverines have only used two pitchers this season, with Josi Summers starting 12 games and Kyli Flanary getting the nod in eight. Summers leads the way with five wins and a 4.37 ERA. She has struck out 46 hitters in 67.1 innings. Each UVU pitcher has allowed seven home runs.
Boise State leads 3-1. The teams met for a pair of doubleheaders in March 2009, with the Broncos taking the first three games.
The Utes will give the Broncos a taste of Mountain West action when Boise State travels to Salt Lake City for a doubleheader Wednesday, at Ute Softball Field. It will be the Broncos' second trip to Salt Lake City in their three-year history.
Utah (15-15) is led by Tia Palauni who is batting .440 with five home runs and 19 RBI, when opposing pitchers choose to attack her. Palauni leads the Mountain West with 23 walks.
Generra Nielson paces Utah in the circle, appearing in 24 games including 19 starts. Nielson has compiled an 11-10 recor and a 3.17 ERA. She has struck out 130 batters in her 106 innings.
The Utes have had success this season against common opponents with Boise State. Utah is 6-2 against five teams the Broncos have seen this season., including a win against Arizona State and an extra-inning loss to Oregon. Boise State is 6-5 against the same teams.
Tied 2-2. The teams have split a doubleheader each of the past two seasons. The Utes won the last meeting, 6-3, in Boise. The four games have been decided by a combined seven runs.
Bridges Cream of the WAC
Freshman Devon Bridges was named WAC Hitter of the Week after batting 5-for-7 with four home runs and 10 RBI against Nevada, March 25-26. Bridges hit a home run in each game, including two in the series finale. She hit a grand slam in the third game to give her two for the season. Bridges also drew three walks in the series.
Middle Inning Magic
Boise State scored 12 runs in the fourth inning March 25, against Nevada. According to the NCAA Record Book, only 25 teams had scored at least a dozen runs in an inning entering the 2011 season...Boise State has outscored its opponents 41-7 in the fourth this year.
Home Runs Contagious
Boise State has hit three home runs in an inning twice this season, March 5, against Seattle (fourth inning) and March 26, against Nevada (1st inning). According to the NCAA Record Book, only seven teams had hit three home runs in an inning. Boise State joins the 2010 Hawai'i team as the only squad to accomplish the feat twice in the same season.
Hundred Hit Club
Junior Kellie Caplan became the second Bronco to record 100 career hits March 19, against Arizona State...Junior Christina Capobianco joined her in the century club March 26, against Nevada. Capobianco earned her milestone with a pinch-hit, two-run double.