(Kansas City, Mo.) – With the regular season nearing its end, the Kansas City Kangaroos (16-19, 5-3 SL) will continue their quest for a third straight Summit League tournament berth on the road against the South Dakota Coyotes (25-16, 8-5 SL) this Saturday (1 p.m. and 3 p.m.) and Sunday (12 p.m.). After its series with the Coyotes, UMKC will head to Ames, Iowa to take on the Iowa State Cyclones (19-26, 4-8 Big 12) in a Monday afternoon doubleheader (2 p.m. and 4 p.m.).
Currently in The Summit League standings, the Blue & Gold sit fourth, whereas South Dakota is right on the heels of the Kangaroos holding down the fifth spot.
» South Dakota Coyotes 25-16, (8-5 Summit League)
Heading into the weekend, the Coyotes have not played a game in nearly two weeks as their matchups at North Dakota State and Oakland were cancelled due to inclement weather. Currently, South Dakota is on a four-game skid with its last win coming against South Dakota State on April 6.
At the plate, infielder/outfielder Yvon Minogue leads the Coyotes in batting (.397), hits (46) on-base percentage (.456) and sits second in RBI (31) behind the league’s RBI leader, catcher/infielder Allie Daly’s (46). Also in the case of Daly (.316), she sits atop of the league in a three-way tie for home runs (10) to go along with a .647 slugging percentage. Rounding out South Dakota’s offensive attack is infielder Lindsey Boyd (.311), who has scored a team-high 45 runs, tallied 41 hits and stolen a league-high 30 bases.
In the circle, senior Erica Denney (14-7) holds the league’s fifth best ERA (2.18) while accumulating 102 strikeouts and surrendering 64 walks, whereas freshman Madison Frain’s (6-8) ERA stands at 4.13 with 78 strikeouts and 64 allowed.
» The Head Coach: In her fifth season at the helm, Amy Klyse holds a 119-119-1 overall record throughout her tenure at South Dakota.
» The Series: The Kangaroos are 7-2 all-time against South Dakota. Last season, Kansas City dropped two out of three at home to South Dakota, in what was the Coyotes’ first season in The Summit League.
» Iowa State Cyclones 19-26, (4-8 Big 12)
Before facing the Kangaroos on Monday, Iowa State will take on No. 1 Oklahoma (39-3, 8-1 Big 12) over the weekend on the road. Heading into that series, the Cyclones have dropped four out of their last five games.
Offensively, infielder Erica Miller leads the Cyclones in batting (.373) while totaling 47 hits and a team-high 48 RBI, whereas infielder/outfielder Brittany Gomez (.356) and outfielder Sarah Hawryluk (.333) have both totaled 40 and more hits, along with 20 or more stolen bases. Home run wise, pitcher/infielder Tori Torrescano (.310) leads Iowa State with 13 and 42 RBI, while Miller is behind her with five.
As for the pitching staff, junior Taylor Smith (7-7) holds a team-best 4.29 ERA with 29 strikeouts, while Torrescano (10-11) maintains a 5.02 ERA with a team-high 64 strikeouts.
» The Head Coach: Stacy Gemeinhardt-Cesler is in her eighth season at Iowa State with an overall record of 171-203.
» The Series: Kansas City is 3-10 all-time against the Cyclones. These squads last met in 2008 during the Shocker Invitational with the Kangaroos falling 7-0.
Last Time Out…
The Kangaroos saw their four-game winning streak come to a sudden halt earlier in the week on Wednesday in doubleheader on the road as the Kansas Jayhawks allowed a total of three hits to shutout Kansas City in both games, 11-0 and 4-0.
‘Roos Looking to Shake Big 12 Woes
After suffering its doubleheader loss to the Jayhawks, Kansas City dropped its record to 0-7 against members of the Big 12 this season. Earlier in the year, the Kangaroos went winless in five attempts against Texas Tech between the Troy Cox Classic (two games) and Jeannie McHaney Memorial Classic (three games).
With the Kangaroos heading to Iowa State, they will look to get over the hump against the Big 12.
Summit League Streaking
After starting 1-3 in Summit League action, the Kangaroos have won their last four games to increase their chances of a third straight league tournament berth.
During this stretch, Kansas City is batting .324 with 34 hits, four home runs and 21 RBI, along with outscoring its opponents, 25-12. Meanwhile, the Kangaroos’ pitching staff holds a 2.42 in the process of allowing seven earned runs, 24 hits, 10 walks and recording 26 strikeouts. In addition, opponents are only batting .235 at the plate.
Friese Throwing Fire of Late
After picking up her first Summit League Pitcher of the Week award this season on April 8, senior Deanna Friese continued her dominance against IUPUI this past weekend. Appearing in both games against the Jags, Friese went 2-0 with a 1.80 ERA while surrendering five hits, two earned runs and six walks, to go along with 17 K’s.
In her last seven appearances, including five starts, the Kennesaw, Ga. native, is 4-2 with a 1.13 ERA while allowing 20 hits, five earned runs and 18 walks in 39.2 innings of work. Friese has also recorded 48 strikeouts and only allowed five extra base hits.
For the season, Friese leads Kansas City’s pitching staff in ERA (5.72), shutouts (3), saves (2) and strikeouts (152) in 122.2 innings of work, while sitting 28th in the nation for most strikeouts per game (8.67).
Ott Showing Her Worth
In her final go-around as a Kangaroo, senior Emily Ott is getting hot at the right time as UMKC is looking to make a push for the league tournament.
In league play (eight games) this season, Ott leads Kansas City in batting (.478), hits (11), doubles (3), slugging (.609) and on-base percentage (.556).
For the year, she leads the squad in batting (.380), slugging (.554), doubles (10) and hits (35), while sitting second in RBI (19) and in a three-way tie for second in home runs (2).
Earlier in the season against Texas Tech on Feb. 16, Ott hit a solo home run to pass Amanda Rice (1999-02) to become the program’s all-time leader in the RBI department with 98. Currently, her career RBI total stands at 112.
Amongst the League Leaders
UMKC currently has six players in the top 10 in multiple statistical categories across The Summit League.
Offensively, Emily Ott is sixth in batting average (.380) and second in doubles (10), while Liz Broyles sits ninth in batting average (.362) and fifth in triples (2). Meanwhile, Marlee Maples is sixth in RBI (28), whereas Brooke Parker sits sixth (13) and Bri Wyatt (9) is 10th in the stolen base department.
Pitching wise, Deanna Friese is third in strikeouts (152), second in strikeouts per game (8.67), fifth in wins (11), second in saves (2) and sixth in innings pitched (122.2).
Where They Stand in the RPI
Monday, the NCAA released its fifth RPI rankings of the season as the Kangaroos held down the 152nd spot. After finishing the 2011 with their highest ranking in team history at 117th, the Kangaroos finished last season ranked 150th.
Moving Up the Career List
After Wednesday’s doubleheader against KU, one player moved up in the UMKC record books.
Career wise, Chelsea Hartwig now sits fourth in the putouts (708).
Through 35 Games in 2012...
The Kangaroos were 4-6 in Summit League play and 16-19 overall, coming off a 9-1 win at South Dakota State.
Next Up for the Kangaroos...
Will be their season finale series at home against the South Dakota State Jackrabbits next weekend. Currently, the Jackrabbits sit eighth in The Summit League standings.