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Friday, April 21, 2006

The most interesting story of this weekend appears to me to be the two Arizona schools going up to northern California to take on Stanford and Cal. At this point, score it Visitors 2, Hosts 0. Arizona defeated Stanford 4-1, while ASU blanked Cal 2-0. The teams will now switch opponents. Consider the attractions of these games:

*All four teams are ranked in the Top 10 nationally.

*As indicated in the official Pac 10 stats (as of April 17), excluding players whose at-bats are in the single digits, six of the top seven leaders in batting average are on these four teams:

Caitlin Lowe, ARIZ......... .490
Kaitlin Cochran, ASU....... .480
Charters, Ashley, WASH..... .429
Sutton, Alex, CAL.......... .404
Morris, Catalina, STAN..... .400
Autumn Champion, ARIZ...... .400
Kristie Fox, ARIZ.......... .393

*Further, again removing players with very little action, five of the top six pitchers in Earned Run Average (ERA) are on the four teams:

Selden, Anjelica, UCLA..... 0.73
Thorson, Kristina, CAL..... 0.80
Taryne Mowatt, ARIZ........ 0.84
Alicia Hollowell, ARIZ..... 0.85
Katie Burkhart, ASU........ 1.19
Desiree Serrano, ASU....... 1.23

As things are turning out in Friday's games, however, the Bay Area gathering of 'Zona, ASU, Stanford, and Cal, is not the only big news in the Pac 10. The nation's No. 1 team, UCLA, with ERA leader Selden in the pitcher's circle, has lost at home to Oregon State, 2-0.

Across the country, Alabama hosts Georgia in a major SEC series starting Saturday.