Broncos Make First Conference Road Trip to CSU

Boise State hits the road in conference play for the first time as a member of the Mountain West, with a three-game series at Colorado State. The Broncos and Rams will face off Friday through Sunday, as Boise State looks to stay on top of the conference standings. First pitch will be at 4 p.m. (MT) Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, from Fort Collins, Colo.

Boise State (29-13, 3-0) is tied for first in the MW after sweeping UNLV to open conference play. The Broncos have started 3-0 in league action during each of the program's first four seasons, but have never moved to 4-0.

CSU (20-21, 0-3) was picked to finish fifth in the conference after a 2011 campaign that saw them finish 8-43, including 1-14 in MW play. In head coach Jen Fisher's second year, the Rams are out to a 20-21 record, and dropped a pair of one-run games at preseason-favorite San Diego State before losing the finale 4-1 in suffering a sweep to open the confernce portion of their schedule.

The Aztecs are tied with Boise State atop the conference standings one week into the season. They travel to New Mexico this weekend, while UNLV is off.

Boise State and CSU have five common opponents thus far, with the Broncos holding a 7-1 mark against those teams. The Rams are 5-2 in such games, including a 10-9, extra-inning victory over Portland State Monday, in their most recent outing.

Live live stats will be available for each game at BroncoSports.com. Stay up to date with all of the news and notes about Boise State Softball by following the official twitter account of the Broncos @BroncoSportsSB.

About the Broncos
Seniors Aubray Zell and Allie Crump anchor the pitching staff for yet another year. Zell is a four-time Mountain West Pitcher of the Week after winning the weekly award three times last season in the WAC. She is 17-8 on the year with a 1.95 ERA and a school-record 150 strikeouts. Crump is 6-2 this season with a 2.83 ERA.

Crump is also a standout at the plate with seven homers, four doubles and a team-best 28 RBI. Sophomore Devon Bridges and senior Christina Capobianco continue to be among the biggest power threats for the Broncos. Bridges leads the team with nine homers. Capobianco has parked five and has 26 RBI, while Bridges is hitting .347 with 27 driven in.

Boise State's top producer with the bat is at the top of the order. Sophomore transfer Tara Glover is hitting .453 and leads the team with a .676 slugging percentage thanks in large part to a school-record three triples. Glover has used her speed to score 37 runs and steal 12 bases, both team highs. A native of Grants Pass, Ore., Glover transfered to Boise State from Utah, where she started all 51 games for the Utes as a freshman in 2011.

Scouting Report
About Colorado State
The Rams enter the weekend series looking for their first conference win of the season after suffering a three-game sweep at San Diego State to open Mountain West play. Colorado State features a potent offense and improving pitching. The bats are led by Ashlie Ortega's 50 hits and .338 batting average. The Rams are hitting .289 as a team and leads the league with 58 doubles. Kacie McCarthy paces the pitching staff with a 2.93 ERA and a 12-7 record. As a unit, CSU has a 4.66 ERA and opponents are hitting .297 against. The Rams were picked to finish fifth in a preseason vote by the conference's coaches.

All-Time Series
The only previous meeting between the Rams and Broncos came during Boise State's inaugural 2009 season. Colorado State won 3-2 in San Diego. The Rams took an early lead, before Boise State tied the game in the fourth. CSU responded with a run in the fifth and held on for the victory. Infielder Lyssa Roberts is the only player on CSU's current roster to appear in that game. All six of the four-year Broncos played in the Feb. 21 game. Aubray Zell pitched a complete game, taking the loss despite allowing just two earned runs.

Top of the Mountain
Sophomore Tara Glover ranks first in the Mountain West in batting average (.453), hits (63) and stolen bases (12). In 2011, while at Utah, Glover led the league in triples and ranked in the top five in runs and hits. Senior Aubray Zell leads the MW in earned run average (1.95), opponent batting average (.193), wins (17), shutouts (4), strikeouts (150), innings (161.1), starts (25) and complete games (16).

Glover Earns Second Player of the Week
Sophomore Tara Glover was named the Mountain West Player of the Week for the week ending April 15, the conference announced Tuesday. Glover batted .700 in leading the Broncos to a three-game sweep of UNLV in the conference opener. She went 7-for-10 with two home runs and two doubles, registering at least two hits in each game. The sophomore centerfielder also drew a walk and was hit by a pitch to post a .750 on-base percentage.

Boise State in Conference Openers
The Broncos have started their conference seasons off right every year. After sweeping UNLV to open its time in the Mountain West, Boise State has scored three-game sweeps in league openers in each of the program's first four seasons. The Broncos opened Western Athletic Conference play during their inaugural 2009 season with three road wins at Utah State. In 2010, Boise State welcomed New Mexico State to Mountain Cove Softball Field by taking all three games.

Last Time Out
Boise State announced its presence in the Mountain West with a three-game sweep against UNLV to open conference play. The Broncos rallied for wins in the first and third games, while hanging on for a 7-5 victory in game two.

Boise State scored twice in the bottom of the seventh to walk off with a 3-2 win Friday, against the Rebels in the Mountain West opener for both teams.

Down to their final two outs and trailing by a run, the Broncos used a pinch-hit single from Tazz Weatherly to keep hope alive. Tara Glover drew a walk and Boise State had the winning run at first base. Kellie Caplan grounded through the right side to score Weatherly from second and tie the game. As the throw came home, Glover was caught rounding third base. UNLV catcher Heather Harrison went to transfer the ball from her hand to her glove in anticipation of making a tag to end the rundown, but the ball popped out and Glover skated by for the winning run.

Aubray Zell went the distance, allowing two runs on just three hits for her school-record 17th win of the season. Zell walked one and struck out four as she needed just 89 pitches to get through seven innings.

Glover and Weatherly led a Boise State offense that backed Allie Crump's strong pitching performance Saturday, in a 7-5 win Glover was 3-for-4 with her second home run of the series while Weatherly went 3-for-3 and drove in a pair of runs.

Crump pitched six and two-thirds innings, holding the Rebels to three hits through six before running into trouble in the seventh. She struck out seven while not walking a batter. Aubray Zell needed just five pitches to record a one-out save, her second save of the season.

Devon Bridges and Crump hit back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning to propel Boise State to a series sweep. The Broncos won 5-4 as Bridges drilled a three-run shot before Crump's solo blast gave Boise State the lead.

Lela Work pitched five shutout innings of relief, giving up four hits and two walks while striking out four. Work earned the win in her first appearance since March 22, improving to 4-2 on the season.

Glover finished the game 2-for-3, as she went 7-for-10 in the series with two home runs and multiple hits in each game. Weatherly also stayed hot at the dish throughout the three-game set, going 1-for-1 Sunday, with two walks as she reached base in all seven plate appearances and stole four bases in the series.

Broncos in the RPI
Boise State leaped to No. 49 in the latest Ratings Percentage Index. It is the first time the team has broken into the top 50. The Broncos peaked at No. 72 last season before finishing 79th. Boise State leads a trio of consecutively-ranked Mountain West teams, just ahead of San Diego State (50) and New Mexico (51). The RPI will be released every Monday, through May 7.

Crump in the Clutch
Four of Allie Crump's seven home runs this season have come in the sixth inning or later. Crump hit the third walk-off home run in school history with two outs in the bottom of the seventh March 16, against Portland State. She also hit a game-winning blast April 11, at Idaho State with two outs in the top of the ninth. Crump's solo shot against the Bengals was the first extra-inning home run in school history. She hit another game-winning homer April 15, against UNLV in the fifth inning.

Been Here Before
Boise State's senior class has combined for 831 career starts in the batting order. Of the 208 games played in program history, seniors Allie Crump and Aubray Zell have combined to start 180 of them in the circle. Kellie Caplan leads the position players with 202 games played and 194 starts. Zell has pitched in 113 games, starting 93 of them, both school records.

Boise State Adds Texas A&M Series
Boise State softball will host a three-game series against Texas A&M May 10-12, at Mountain Cove Softball Field. The two schools have never met on the softball diamond and Boise State is 0-7 all-time against teams from the Big 12 Conference.


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