CHATTTANOOGA, Tenn. - The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga softball team has worked hard this week preparing for the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional after receiving a No. 2 seed, the highest in program history, on May 15. The Lady Mocs enter their eighth NCAA Regional on Friday with a 4:30 p.m. (EDT) matchup with No. 3 Memphis (35-12). The nightcap is set for 7 p.m. between No. 1 Alabama (46-8) and No. 4 Jackson State (25-19).
The winner of the first two games take the field at Rhoads Stadium on Saturday at 2 p.m., while the losers battle at 4:30 p.m., in the double-elimination tournament. A champion from the loser's bracket will be determined at 7 p.m. and the winner would play on Sunday for the right to advance to the Super Regionals begining at 2 p.m. with an if neccessary game played 30 minutes afterwards.
Chattanooga has an impressive offense this season with all nine hitters in the lineup hitting over .300. The team batting average is .351 over the 54 game season, which leads the NCAA. The Lady Mocs are seventh in scoring at 7.0 runs per game and 11th in slugging at .524.
Individually, junior pitcher and designated player Michelle Fuzzard (Huntington Beach, Calif.) is second nationally in RBI per game at 1.37, while senior outfielder Lyndsey Stiles (Hixson, Tenn.) ranks fifth in runs per game at 1.17.
In the circle, senior Nikki Waters (Soddy Daisy, Tenn.) dominated the Southern Conference Tournament posting a 3-0 record and 0.46 ERA totaling 14 strikeouts in 15.5 innings pitched. She struckout seven of the 14 batters she faced in the championship game against College of Charleston.
The Lady Mocs have also been successful in the classroom as seven starters earned Dean's List recognition for the spring semester that ended on May 5th. Senior third baseman Tiffany Baker (East Ridge, Tenn.) was named to the Capital One Academic All-District IV First Team and has been nominated for all-american honors to be announced on May 26.
Links to live stats and audio can be found on the softball schedule page of GoMocs.com, the official website of Chattanooga Athletics. The Voice of the Lady Mocs Tyler Brown will handle the play-by-play commentary for the regional.
The NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional
- The Lady Mocs have been sent to Tuscaloosa for the fifth time in eight NCAA Tournament appearances.
- Chattanooga earned the Southern Conference automatic bid by winning the league’s tournament. The Lady Mocs have earned eight of the 12 automatic bids since the league was given one in 2000.
- The No. 2 seed for Chattanooga is the highest in program history. UTC was a three seed in 2009 at Tuscaloosa.
- Six Lady Mocs - Lauren Flores, Della Harrison, Kandice Irwin, Lyndsey Stiles, Fuzzard and Baker - will be playing in their third regional at Rhoads Stadium (2008, 2009, 2011).
- The Lady Mocs are 4-14 all-time in NCAA Regionals and are looking for their first win since 2002 vs. Florida Atlantic.
- Chattanooga has a RPI ranking of 47.
- The Lady Mocs offense ranks in the NCAA Top 15 in Batting (1st - .351), Scoring (7th- 7.0 runs/g) and Slugging (11th - .530).
- The powerful offense is fueled by Baker and SoCon Player of the Year Fuzzard, who have driven in a combined 136 runs.
- Baker is the Chattanooga and SoCon all-time home run leader with 47. She set the Lady Mocs single-season mark with 15 this year.
- Fuzzard has shattered the Lady Mocs and conference RBI records with 75 on the season and is second nationally with 1.37 RBI/g.
- Seven of the nine Lady Mocs starters ended the current spring semester on the school’s dean list. Baker and Irwin each notched a perfect 4.0 this semester.
- A complete history of Chattanooga in the NCAA Tournament can be found on page 6-7.
Chattanooga Against the Regional Participants
- Out of the three teams in Tuscaloosa, the Lady Mocs have only played Alabama previously.
- Alabama holds a 2-7 advantage in the all-time series against the Lady Mocs. Chattanooga took two of the first four meetings in 1998 and 2001.
- The 2001 meeting was a doubleheader split against then-No. 3 Alabama, 1-2, 5-4, in Tuscaloosa.
- The last matchup was in the 2008 Tuscaloosa regional, where the Crimson Tide won 8-0 in six innings.
- Chattanooga did play Alabama to a 5-4 contest in the fall as the Crimson Tide record a walk-off win in the seventh.
- The Lady Mocs have not faced Memphis or Jackson State on the softball field.
Shattered Records Entering NCAA Regional
Single-Season Records Broken
-Tiffany Baker (15) - Chattanooga Home Runs
-Michelle Fuzzard (75) - Chattanooga and SoCon RBI
-Lyndsey Stiles (33) - Chattanooga Stolen Bases
-Lyndsey Stiles (63) - Chattanooga Runs Scored
-Home Runs (55) - Chattanooga
-RBI (356) - Chattanooga
-Runs Scored (378) - Chattanooga
-Total Bases (771) - Chattanooga
-Hit By Pitch (43) - Chattanooga
Career Records Broken
Tiffany Baker (47) - Chattanooga and SoCon Home Runs
Approaching Single-Season Records
- Lyndsey Stiles (63) - SoCon Runs Scored Record is 66 by Amanda Cone in 2004
- Tiffany Baker (115) and Michelle Fuzzard (124) - Chattanooga Total Bases Record is 136 by Allison DeVries - SoCon mark is 155 by Amanda Cone in 2004
- Sara Poteat (12) - Chattanooga Hit By Pitch Record is 15 by Mandi Green in 2004
- Vivian Morimoto (.517) - Chattanooga On-Base Pct. Record is .500 by Allison DeVries in 1999 and Mandi Green in 1998.
- Slugging Pct. (.533 ) - Record is held by 1998 team with .483
- On-Base Pct. (.431) - Record is held by 1998 team with .422
The SoCon Tournament
- The Lady Mocs have captured 11 SoCon Tournament titles.
- Chattanooga improved its record to 49-17 all-time in the event.
- Six Lady Mocs have won three SoCon Tournament titles.
- Sophomore 2B Sara Poteat was named the tournament’s most outstanding player recording seven hits and an RBI.
- Senior P Nikki Waters was equally as impressive in posting a 3-0 mark and 0.46 ERA with 14 strikeouts in 15.5 innings.
- Senior P Kandice Irwin notched her seventh save of the season and 20th career, moving her to a tie for fourth on the NCAA all-time list.
- Also named to the all-tournament team were Della Harrison, Vivian Morimoto, Fuzzard and Waters.
- Harrison provided the Lady Mocs spark to open the tournament with a two-run homer in the first two contests. They were her first round trippers since May 27.
Lady Mocs on SoCon All-Conference Teams
- Fuzzard was the first SoCon Player of Year for Lady Mocs since 2004, Melissa Ramirez. She is only the fourth Chattanooga player to be named to that honor.
- Haed Coach Frank Reed earned his fourth-straight and fifth-overall SoCon Coach of the Year award.
- Seven selections to All-Conference teams ties Chattanooga and SoCon record.
- Five First Team members is second most in school history. (1999+2001 had six).
- Three-Time First Team: Baker, Fuzzard, Stiles.
- Four-time All-SoCon: Fuzzard (DP - 1st/P-2nd in 2009), Stiles.
- See full list on page 3.
Capital One Academic All-District Team
- Baker was selected to the first team and Irwin was honored to the third team. The award is voted upon by CoSIDA.
- Baker is now eligible for the Capital One Academic All-America team to be announced on May 26.
- Baker graduated on May 7 with a 3.73 GPA in Health and Human Performance, Pedagogy.
- Irwin compiled a 3.36 GPA and will graduate in Exceptional Learning (K-12) in December.
Tearing Up the SoCon
- As a team, Chattanooga compiled a .391 batting average, .590 slugging pct. and .470 on-base pct. against SoCon opponents.
- Chattanooga scored 219 runs, 8.0 per game, and 288 hits, 10.6 per game.
- Poteat and Vivian Morimoto paced the conference in batting average with .513 and .529, respectively.
- Baker has drove in a conference leading 42 runs, while Fuzzard is right behind at 40.
- Morimoto notched an .843 slugging pct. in league games leading the conference by 60 points.
Five-Straight SoCon Titles
- The Lady Mocs needed a sweep to clinch the title on Senior Day against Georgia Southern and that is exactly what the six seniors did. Chattanooga held a clothing drive prior to the doubleheader for the Tornado victims in the Chattanooga area.
- May 1 was the first time that the six Chattanooga seniors claimed the regular season championship at Frost Stadium.
- The Lady Mocs now have captured 13 of the 18 SoCon Regular Season Championships.
Reached Base Streaks
- Poteat and Stiles are the table setters for the Lady Mocs and have reached base safely in each of the past 17 games going back to April 9 against UNCG.
- Poteat has also hit safely in 12 straight-games, a Chattanooga season-high.
- Baker had a streak of reaching base in 18-consecutive games snapped against Colorado State on March 18 that began against Georgia Tech on Feb. 12.
1. Melissa Ramirez (33-2002)
2. Leah Tucker (19-2001)
3. Melissa Ramriez (19-2001)
4. Tiffany Baker (18-2011)
Jill Crawford (18-2002)
5. Sara Poteat (17 - 2011) - current
Lyndsey Stiles (17 - 2011) - current
Lady Mocs and SoCon All-Time Home Run Leader
- Baker broke the Lady Mocs home run record last season with her 26th and this season took down the Southern Conference mark with her 43rd against UNCG (4/9/11).
- Baker currently has 47 in her career. (See chart on page 3)
- The East Ridge, Tenn., native also shattered the UTC single-season record with her 15th round tripper of the year against Georgia Southern. She tied the record held by Angela Brewer last season.
- Baker is in the top five in the SoCon in six offensive categories, which includes leading in slugging, home runs, RBI and on-base pct.
A Powerful Offense
- The Chattanooga offense has been a force this season and is the most dangerous in the history of the program.
- The Lady Mocs have run-ruled 17 opponents, 13 of those being after five innings.
- NCAA: Batting (1st-.351), Scoring (7th-7.0), Slugging (11th-.530).
- In the 42 wins:
- .400 avg., .618 slug%, .477 on-base%
- 462 hits, 369 runs, 350 RBI, 69 2B, 10 3B, 54 HR, 151 BB
- Per game: 11.0 hits, 8.8 runs, 8.3 RBI, 3.1 extra-base hits
- 2011 Overall (54 games):
- .352 avg., .533 slug%, .431 on-base%
- 509 hits, 378 runs, 356 RBI, 77 2B, 10 3B, 55 HR, 176 BB
- Per game: 9.4 hits, 7.0 runs, 6.6 RBI, 2.7 extra-base hits
- The best offense over a season was in 1998 (47-15):
- .361 avg., .483 slg%, .422 on-base%
- 564 hits, 361 runs, 310 RBI, 95 2B, 18 3B, 20 HR, 166 BB
- Per game: 9.1 hits, 5.8 runs, 5.0 RBI, 2.14 extra-base hits
The Dual-Threat Fuzzzard
- Fuzzard has been a stellar for Chattanooga in the circle recording 17 victories.
- She has been even more impressive offensively with a .412 avg. and driving in 75 runs in 54 games.
- Fuzzard is 2nd nationally in RBI with 1.37 per game.
- She is in the SoCon Top 5 in 8 offensive and 4 pitching categories.
- The Huntington Beach, Calif., native has 14 home runs and leads the team in hits with 68.
- She also strung together 11-consecutive hits, T-3rd all-time in NCAA history, from Feb. 20 vs. Southeastern Louisiana to her final at bat vs. IUPUI on Feb. 26. The longest such streak is 13.
Irwin Increases Career Save Total
- Irwin now has 20 career saves as she notched one in the SoCon Tournament and is tied for fourth nationally this season with seven.
- She is tied for fourth all-time in NCAA history with Chrissy Owens, Alabama (2005-08).
- The Knoxville, Tenn., native can move into alone in third with two more.
- The record is held by Kellie Wikerson, Mississippi State (1999-02) with 32. (see chart on page 3)
Dominating The Circle
- The team ERA of 2.43 has kept opponents off the scoreboard and the offense has kept the pressure off the pitching staff.
- Fuzzard has notched 17 wins, which is T-1st in the SoCon.
- Irwin has been a relief specialist with just three starts compiling a 1.55 ERA with 102 strikeouts in 99.2 innings pitched.
- Fuzzard paces the team with 131.1 innings and has fanned 85 hitters in compiling a 3.05 ERA.
- Senior Nikki Waters has been fantastic down the stretch posting 11-of-13 victories since SoCon play began, while notching a 2.27 ERA and 91 strikeouts in 108.0 innings.
Aggressive On The Bases
- Chattanooga is 57-64 in stolen bases thru 54 games.
- Last season, the Lady Mocs swiped just 42 bags.
- Stiles leads the way going 33-34 in stolen base attempts, which also paces the SoCon and has broken the UTC single-season record.
- She is second all-time as a Lady Moc with 86. Jeannie Cochran (2004-07) is a top the list with 94.
Consistency In The Lineup
- All nine Lady Moc starters are hitting above .300.
- Eight Lady Mocs are slugging better than .400.
- Five also have an on-base pct. over .400.
- Each defensive position has also driven in at least 21 runs, while scoring 29.
- Eight different Lady Mocs have connected on the team’s 55 total home runs.
Blue Wristbands in Honor of a Friend
- Prior to fall camp, the Lady Mocs adopted Amanda Swartout as an honorary teammate through the Friend’s of Jacklyn Program.
- Swartout battled cancer throughout her life and her courage has worn off on the Lady Mocs.
- Chattanooga is wearing baby blue armbands in memory of their teammate, Swarthout, who passed on April 22, since then the Lady Mocs are on a 13-game winning streak.
Three Grand Slams on the Season
- Chattanooga has set a school record with 55 home runs on the season and three times have converted with the bases loaded.
- Junior shortstop Jessica Traxler was the latest Lady Mocs to accomplish the feat by drilling a 2-1 pitch over the fence at Western Carolina on May 7.
- Sophomore first baseman Kasey Tydingco connected on a grand slam against Ohio State on Feb. 18.
- Baker has three bases-load homers in her impressive career including one in each of the past three seasons. This year, the grand slam occurred on March 27 in a two-home run game against Appalachian State.
SoCon Player of the Week - May 9
- Fuzzard received her third player of the week award and fourth overall, which included a pitcher of the week honor.
- The Huntington Beach, Calif., native went 10-for-13 at the plate with a double, two home runs and 13 RBI.
- The 13 RBI broke the Chattanooga single-season and shattered the SoCon season mark as she has totaled 13 on the season.
- Fuzzard compiled a .769 batting avg., 1.308 slugging and .789 on-base pct., in the three-game sweep of Western Carolina.
- She also moved into second place on the Chattanooga all-time home run list at 26, right behind Baker’s conference leading 47.
- It was the seventh weekly recognition for the Lady Mocs this season as four different players have been honored.
SoCon Player of the Month - April
- Baker was tabbed her second career the monthly honor for compiling a .386 batting average, .818 slugging pct. and .491 on-base pct. as the Lady Mocs wen 11-4.
- She registered five muli-hit and six multi-RBI games, while recording four doubles, five home runs and 23 RBI.
- The East Ridge, Tenn., became the SoCon all-time home run leader and eventually broke the UTC single-season HR record on Senior Day on May 1.
- She has 15 round trippers this season and 47 in her career.
Two Double-Digit Innings
- The Lady Mocs have had a knack for putting up crooked numbers on the scoreboard this season and twice they have hit double digits.
- The first was a 13-run first inning against Appalachian State setting a school record as the team scored the runs on eight singles, a double and a triple.
- Chattanooga utilized a 10-run sixth at Western Carolina to go from being down 6-4 to a run-rule victory. Three home runs by Fuzzard, Morimoto and junior Jenni Martin drove in eight of the runs.
SoCon Player of the Week - April 11
- Fuzzard continued her tear in the Southern Conference compiling a .571 average with four doubles, two home runs and five RBI.
- It was her third weekly award of the season - pitcher on Feb. 14 and player on Feb. 28.
- She notched a hit in each contest and had a double in four-straight games.
- The Huntington Beach, Calif., tied game two at five against UNCG with a two-run blast and extended the Lady Mocs lead to 5-0 on a three-run shot off the Frost Stadium scoreboard in the finale.
- Fuzzard earned the sixth weekly recognition on the year for the Lady Mocs. It was the third-straight weekly award for the team.
SoCon Player of the Week - April 4
- Morimoto has found a home in the lineup as a backup catcher and designated player on a daily basis.
- She propelled the Lady Mocs offense in game one at Elon with two solo home runs and a three-RBI double to blow the contest wide open in the seventh.
- The Sao Paulo, Brazil, native recorded three multi-hit games slugging 1.143 and compiling a .647 on-base pct.
- She notched a hit in every contest with an official at bat.
- Elon pitched around her in the final as she drew three walks.
- She was the fourth different individual selected as player of the week this year, tying a SoCon record (UTC - 1999, Furman - 1995).
Two Big First Innings
- The Lady Mocs 13-run first in game 2 vs. Appalachian State set numerous records and was the most all-time at UTC.
- Tied for the most runs scored in a first inning in NCAA history with Creighton against North Dakota St. on 4/5/10.
- Second most runs in an inning during a conference game. UTEP scored 17 on Houston in the fourth of a C-USA game on 4/6/07.
- Chattanooga sent 17 players to the plate with 10 hits. A double and triple were the only extra-base knocks.
- The Lady Mocs then put a nine spot at Elon in the second game of the series, scoring all runs on six singles.
- College of Charleston holds the SoCon and NCAA mark with 29 runs scored in the second against Savannah St. (2/11/04).
Baker’s Third Career Grand Slam
- Baker hit her third home run with the bases loaded as a Lady Moc in game 1 vs. Appalachian State.
- She is T-4th all-time in NCAA and is T-2nd among active players.
- Her first was hit against Belmont (3/18/09).
- She cleared the bases again at Tennessee St. (4/6/10).
SoCon Player of the Week - March 28
- Baker went 3-for-5 with a 1.800 slg pct.
- She recorded her third career-multi HR game.
- The East Ridge, Tenn., native blasted her third career Grand Slam in a six RBI performance.
- She is the all-time UTC leader with 43 HR and has nine this year.
- Baker is the fourth Lady Mocs honored with a weekly SoCon award.
Best Start in School History
- Thru the first 33 games the Lady Mocs posted a 25-8 mark.
- Breaking the 1999 squad’s 21-9 record for the best start in the 17-year history of the program dating back to 1994.
- That team finished the season at 48-18, but played 10 more contests than the 56-game season that is allowed today.
Reed Notches 850th Career Win
- Each milestone victory for head coach Frank Reed seems to be memorable and 850 was no different against Liberty.
- The Lady Mocs fell behind 6-2 in the fourth, but an offensive out-burst of eight runs powered by three-run homers from Baker and sophomore SS Jessica Traxler started in the bottom of the frame.
- Chattanooga would run-rule Flames, 14-6, in the sixth inning.
- Reed notched his 800th win as the Lady Mocs came from behind twice, once in extras, last season in a 6-5 win over Rutgers.
Hitting For The Cycle
- Freshman catcher Natalie Power hit for the cycle in four-straight at bats in two games against Samford.
- The Gleenpool, Okla., native registered a triple and home run in the final two at bats in the first game.
- She sat as the backup catcher in game two, then notched a double and single in the first two plate appearances of the finale.
Irwin and Fuzzard Take SoCon Monthly Honors
- Fuzzard compiled a .419 batting average and drove in a conference leading 20 runs on 4 HR, 4 2B and 3 SF.
- She additionally had a stretch of 11-consecutive hits.
- Irwin posted a 1.42 ERA for the month, while toting a 4-1 mark with four saves.
- The Knoxville, Tenn., native threw 34.1 innings and struck out 34, yielding just seven earned runs.
Fuzzard Impressive at Bulldog Invitational
- Fuzzard was stellar in Athens, Ga. even though she went 1-2.
- No. 1 Georgia was kept off balance all game as the Lady Mocs had a 3-2 lead entering the bottom of the seventh, when the Bulldogs scored two for the walk off victory.
- She earned the victory against Campbell and struck out a career-high nine against Indiana in a losing effort, where she only gave up one earned run.
Taking No. 1 Georgia To The Wire
- If the Lady Mocs had been able to hold to the one-run lead in the seventh and knock off No. 1 Georgia, it would have been the first win over the No. 1 team in program history.
- Chattanooga did defeat then-No. 3 Alabama in Tuscaloosa on April 4, 2001 by a 5-4 score. The Lady Mocs lost the first game that day 2-1 in the ninth inning.
Fuzzard - SoCon Player Of The Week - Feb. 28
- It was the third-consecutive weekly honor for the Lady Mocs with Fuzzard also earning pitching recognition on Feb. 14.
- She compiled a .643 batting average on nine hits, two doubles, two home runs and 10 RBI at the Frost Classic.
- She recorded a 1.214 slugging percentage and notched a career-high five RBI against East Tennessee State.
Baker - SoCon Student-Athlete of The Week - Feb. 28
- Baker was honored for her excellence on the field and in the classroom.
- She compiled a .727 batting average, .824 on-base and 1.364 slugging percentage at the Frost Classic.
- She connected on two home runs that Saturday against IUPUI and Northern Iowa.
Tydingco - SoCon Player Of The Week - Feb. 21
- Sophomore first baseman Kasey Tydingco compiled a .375 average with eight RBI and her first two collegiate home runs including a grand slam against Ohio State.
- Tydingco notched a RBI double and sacrifice fly against UT Martin, while connecting on a solo shot to left center against Evansville.
Grand Slam For Tydingco
- The grand slam against Ohio State by Tydingco was the second time in the past year that a Lady Mocs’ first homer was with the bases loaded.
- Senior RF Della Harrison accomplished the feat last season in a pinch hit opportunity at Samford on March 28.
- Baker added another for Chattanooga at Tennessee State on April 6.
Fuzzard Comes Back Strong
- With Tydingco earning the starting nod at first base, Fuzzard has held the designated player role, when she is not in the circle.
- The two home runs by Fuzzard at South Alabama were her first homers since a walk off home run at the 2009 SoCon Tournament in the semifinals against Samford.
- Fuzzaad redshirted last season after suffering a knee injury
- She went 6-for-15 and drove in nine runs during 2010.
- Tydingco was named to the SoCon All-Freshman Team in 2010 after stepping in for Fuzzard at first.
- She has kept her starting role at first base for her stellar defensive play at first base.
Fuzzard - SoCon Player Of The Week - Feb. 14
- Coming off season ending knee surgery a year ago, Fuzzard threw a complete-game in her first start.
- She lost the game, but went 1-1 on the weekend with five strikeouts in 12.2 innings pitched.
- Fuzzard earned the victory in the 1-0 win against Fordham as Irwin notched her second save of the season.
Lady Mocs Selected Second By Coaches
- For the first time since 2007, the Lady Mocs were not picked to win the conference.
- Elon edged them by two votes, 61-59 and held a 5-to-4 advantage in first-place votes.
Five Sign During Early Period
- The Lady Mocs will get depth in the circle next year with pitchers Taylor Deason, Jennifer Garcia and Brittany Perez.
- Chattanooga also added positions players Sarah Beth Roberts and Cheyenne Willis.