Teams: UC Davis at Cal State Northridge
Records: Aggies, 12-22 (2-1); Matadors 7-24 (2-1)
Where: Matador Diamond — Northridge, Calif.
When: Friday at noon and 2:00 p.m.; Saturday at noon
Who to watch: Cassandra Ginnis has needed little time to adjust to the college game. The freshman sensation ranks second on the team with 25 hits on the season, and is also tied for the team lead in runs scored with 11.
The Santa Ana, Calif. native hopes to continue her success near her hometown when the Aggies travel down to Southern California to play Cal State Northridge in their second Big West Conference series of the year.
“It is a really good feeling to start freshman year on the field,” Ginnis said. “Especially during conference [play].”
Did you know? In the Big West Conference, Pacific is the only team to maintain a winning record after finishing pre-conference play.
With the conference title up for grabs, UC Davis will certainly hope to continue the momentum from its two conference victories against UC Riverside.
To do this, the Aggies will need to improve their 5-13 record away from LaRue Field against the Matadors who are only 1-5 at home.
Preview: UC Davis faces a CSU Northridge team that, while dropping its first 13 games of the year, is coming off two wins against Pacific.
Although the Matadors are tied at the top of the league standings with UC Davis in the early season, the Aggies appear to be the more complete and consistent team.
At almost three runs scored per contest, UC Davis is averaging a full run per game more than CSU Northridge in addition to having a team batting average of .240 compared to the Matadors’ meager.192 average.
In addition to their offensive struggles, the Matadors also had difficulty keeping runs off the board, as they have a team ERA of 5.62 compared to the Aggies’ 4.24 ERA.
UC Davis batters, who have racked up 73 walks on the year, have a great opportunity to add more to their totals when facing the Matadors’ primary starter Mia Pagano, who walks over two batters per game.
On the other side, the Aggies’ starting pitchers will have to be careful when pitching against CSU Northridge catcher Mikayla Thielges. The powerful junior ranks second in the Big West Conference in home runs with six on the season.
With a couple wins in this weekend’s series, the Aggies will be in prime position to continue their battle for the league title.
— Doug Bonham