The UCLA softball season finally got underway and with a good, but not perfect weekend (Photo Credit: Official Site)
The top-ranked Bruins didn't begin their 2010 season as they'd hoped, finishing in a tie for third place at the Regional Challenge, seven shots off of the lead. The team is now off until March.
Up to #3 in the nation, UCLA was embarrassed, then embarrassed their opponent in games three and four of their five-game road trip. In Palo Alto, #5 Stanford dealt the Bruins a 30-24, 30-23, 30-24 defeat in just 90 minutes. Just a day later, the Bruins bounced back to make quick work of Pacific, 30-26, 30-26, 30-27. Now 7-6 overall and 6-4 in MPSF play, UCLA will be at #10 UCSB and home to #1 Cal St. Northridge this week.
Women's Water Polo
It was a laid back week for the #4 Bruins with just one game on the schedule, but UCLA didn't relax in that one game. Hosting #13 Cal St. Northridge, UCLA took care of the Matadors with ease, 9-5. Games at #3 Cal, #15 UC Davis and Sonoma St. are up this week.
It was a tough weekend for the #4 Bruins at the ITA Indoors, where they won one, but lost two. That lone win came first as UCLA defeated #14 Kentucky, 4-1. That was followed up with a 4-2 loss at the hands of #5 Tennessee, then a 4-0 loss to #1 USC. Down to 3-2 on the year, UCLA hosts San Diego St. this week.
If only #5 UCLA could avoid #8 Stanford from now on. The Bruins fell to 6-2 on the year when they lost to the Cardinal for the second time this season. Stanford beat the Bruins 195.975-195.625 despite Vanessa Zamparippa taking the all-around because of UCLA falls on the balance beam and out-of-bounds point deductions in the floor exercise. This Sunday, #7 Oregon St. will visit Pauley Pavilion.
Preseason #6 UCLA waiting all offseason to begin their 2010 season, then because of rain, they had to wait another day. Rain wiped out play on Friday at the Dot Richardson Invitational in Florida so they had to wait until Saturday to play, when they beat Florida Atlantic, 11-0, in five innings. The game later that day was supposed to be tougher versus #16 Tennessee, but it didn't look it as they beat the Vols, 11-1, in six innings. Sunday morning brought an epic contest as UCLA fought back twice in extra innings to even the game up again versus #3 Michigan, but finally lost in 13 innings, 4-2. The Bruins were able to finish the weekend on a high note though, rallying from a run down in the sixth to beat #7 Georgia, 3-2. UCLA will play a doubleheader at UCSB on Wednesday before hosting a tournament all weekend at Easton Stadium.
#12 UCLA had a good week at the ITA National Indoors, even with a single loss. The weekend began with a close 4-3 win over #6 Miami, their first upset of the weekend. The Bruins fought tough in their next match, but the 4-3 decision went the other way as #2 Cal beat them. That didn't discourage the Bruins though as they finished off the weekend with a convincing 4-1 win over #4 Florida, giving them a 2-1 record for the weekend versus three top six teams. UCLA will host LMU and Cal Poly this week.
At the Battle of the Beach in Newport Beach, the #13 Bruins were in fifth place after the first round. UCLA is six shots behind the leader with 36 holes left to play.
Only one game last week for UCLA, but it was a big one and their play made it clear that they knew it was a big one. The Bruins demolished USC, 74-56, in front of over 8,000 people at Pauley Pavilion to grab second place in the Pac-10 and a game and a half lead over third place Cal. The Bruins got out quick versus USC, leading 14-4 early on and stretching that lead to as much as 27 at one point. UCLA continues a stretch with five of their last seven at home by hosting the Washington schools this weekend.
Men's Track and Field
At the Boise St. Invitational, the Bruins 4x400m team finished first, while all four members of the team took home event wins in addition. Randall Carroll finished third in the 200m and fifth in the 60m. Cory Primm and Marlon Patterson led the way for the distance runners at the Husky Invitational with lifetimes bests and NCAA qualifiers. The team will take this week off.
Women's Track and Field
Ryann Krais was the Bruins' best woman at the Boise St. Invitational, taking home the pentathalon title with a score that is fifth best in the country this year. As a whole, the team had 14 season best marks in all events and nine lifetime bests.
Women's Swimming and Diving
The Bruins showed up ready to go, swimming 14 NCAA qualifying times, 21 lifetime-bests and 37 season-bests, but it was not enough to beat #9 USC in the final regular season meet of the season. UCLA will now turn its attention to the Pac-10 Championships in two weeks.
Calendar (all times pacific)
Monday, February 15
Men's Golf, Battle at the Beach, All Day- Newport Beach, CA
Tuesday, February 16
Men's Golf, Battle at the Beach, All Day- Newport Beach, CA
Wednesday, February 17
Softball at UC Santa Barbara, 12:00 pm- Santa Barbara, CA
Softball at UC Santa Barbara, 2:00 pm- Santa Barbara, CA
Men's Volleyball at UC Santa Barbara, 7:00 pm- Santa Barbara, CA
Thursday, February 18
Women's Tennis vs. Loyola Marymount, 1:30 pm- LA Tennis Center
Women's Basketball vs. Washington, 7:00 pm- Pauley Pavilion
Friday, February 19
Softball vs. Cal St. Northridge, 4:00 pm- Easton Stadium
Baseball vs. Southern, 6:00 pm- Jackie Robinson Stadium
Softball vs. Cal Poly, 6:30 pm- Easton Stadium
Men's Volleyball vs. Cal St. Northridge, 7:00 pm- Pauley Pavilion
Men's Tennis vs. San Diego St., 1:00 pm- LA Tennis Center
Women's Basketball vs. Washington St., 4:00 pm- Pauley Pavilion
Softball vs. UC Davis, 4:00 pm- Easton Stadium
Baseball vs. Bethune-Cookman, 6:00 pm- Compton, CA- TV: MLB Network
Softball vs. Cal St. Northridge, 6:30 pm- Easton Stadium
Women's Water Polo at Cal, 7:00 pm- Berkeley,CA
Sunday, February, 21
Women's Water Polo at UC Davis, 11:15 am- Rohnert Park, CA
Women's Tennis vs. Cal Poly, 12:00 pm- LA Tennis Center
Softball vs. Portland St., 12:30 pm- Easton Stadium
Baseball vs. Cal St. Northridge, 2:00 pm- Jackie Robinson Stadium
Women's Gymnastics vs. Oregon St., 2:00 pm- Pauley Pavilion
Women's Water Polo vs. Sonoma St., 2:15 pm- Rohnert Park