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Kelsey Allender
Courtesy: Jason Wise Photography

Softball Heads To Tulsa This Weekend

2014 Creighton Softball Notes

Tulsa Invitational Schedule (UPDATED 2/26 at 9 pm)
Fri., Feb. 28    at #21 Tulsa (13-2)    Tulsa, Okla.    1 pm Doublehader
Sat., March 1    vs. Northwestern State (7-7)    Tulsa, Okla.    10 am

• Creighton is 4-6 on the season after going 1-4 last weekend in Arlington, Texas, at the UTA Hilton Invitational. The Bluejays will return to the diamond this weekend with three games in two days at the Tulsa Invitational in Tulsa, Okla. All three games are scheduled for the Collins Family Softball Complex.

• All three games in Tulsa will have free live stats, with links to come on GoCreighton.com. Both match-ups with Tulsa will also have premium video available.

• Tulsa went 42-16-1 last season, including a 14-4 record at home. After finishing second in the Conference USA regular-season standings, the Golden Hurricane were sent to the Lincoln Regional in the NCAA Tournament, losing close games to Stanford and UNI.

• Northwestern State went 40-15 last season. The Demons were sent to the Baton Rouge Regional for the NCAA Tournament, falling to Louisiana-Lafayette and Central Connecticut State, after claiming its first Southland Conference Tournament title since 2002 last spring.

• Creighton will play a pair of games against nationally-ranked No. 21 Tulsa. The Bluejays are 1-1 this spring against ranked foes, falling 3-0 at No. 7 Arizona State before a 6-4 win over No. 24 California on Feb. 8th.

• The win over No. 24 California was the first ranked team Creighton had defeated since a 4-3 win over No. 21 Tulsa in Arlington, Texas, last March 2.

• Creighton’s lone last weekend was a 1-0 victory over Texas Tech that saw the Bluejays pick up a walk-off victory. Creighton was then on the other end of the equation in its next game, falling 6-5 to UT Arlington after surrendering a walk-off home run.

• Six Creighton players have started all 10 contests this year, Liz Dike, Alexis Cantu, Blair Lowe, Bri Lingl, Jen Daro and Kelsey Allender. A year ago four women started all 47 games, a group that included Cantu, Lowe and Allender. In addition, Lingl (45 starts) and Dike (46) were also regulars in the starting nine.

• Creighton is hitting .203 through 10 games, scoring 31 runs on 49 hits so far.  By comparison, last year’s club was 6-4 after 10 games and had 56 runs on 77 hits, while the 2012 team had 72 runs and 89 hits en route to a 7-3 mark through 10 contests.

• Creighton is 4-for-12 (.333) in pinch-hitting situations this year, as Cassie Sharon is 3-for-5 and Alex Millspaugh came through in her only opportunity. Last season Creighton’s pinch-hitters went 11-for-58 (.190), led by seven pinch-hits from Blake Ringle.

Liz Dike leads Creighton with nine hits, nine RBI, eight runs, three homers, two doubles and 20 total bases. Her .273 batting average is best on the team among players to have started more than half of CU’s games.

• Senior pitchers Alexis Cantu and Becca Changstrom are tied for the team lead with two wins each inside the circle. Cantu paces the team with a 1.20 ERA, while Changstrom leads the team in starts (5), complete games (5), saves (1), innings (34.1) and strikeouts (37).

Liz Dike homered twice in Creighton’s season-opener, and had three round-trippers overall in the opening weekend in Tempe, Ariz. Dike owned 11 homers in 100 combined games during her freshman and sophomore seasons, and last year didn’t hit her third home run until April 13th in CU’s 34th game.

• Creighton is in its first season in the BIG EAST after a long run in the Missouri Valley Conference. The Bluejays were picked second in the preseason poll, trailing only DePaul. Last season Creighton was picked fourth in the preseason MVC poll, but would go on to win the regular-season title.

• After this weekend’s play, the Bluejays will head to Winter Haven, Fla., where it plays 12 games from March 9-15 before returning to Omaha for its home opener on March 19 vs. Wichita State.
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