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49ers host Cal Poly in softball Friday and Saturday

Senior Taylor Petty is back after missing first two months of the season

April 3, 2012

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49ERS ENTERTAIN CAL POLY IN BIG WEST HOME OPENER: Long Beach State opens the home portion of the Big West Conference season this weekend when the 49ers host Cal Poly on Friday and Saturday. LBSU opened league play winning one of three games at UC Santa Barbara last week, while Cal Poly lost two of three at home to Cal State Fullerton. Friday's doubleheader starts at 1 p.m., while Saturday's game gets underway at 1 p.m. as well.

PETTY IS EFFECTIVE IN DEBUT AT UC SANTA BARBARA LAST WEEK: Senior pitcher Taylor Petty returned to the lineup last weekend in Long Beach State's Big West opening series against UC Santa Barbara. Petty went 1-1 with a 1.85 ERA, while holding the Gauchos to a .108 batting average. Petty picked up a 3-0 win in her first game throwing a two-hit shutout during a game that started Saturday and had to be finished Sunday because of rain. Petty took the loss, 3-1, in game three of the series, but she had a no-hitter through four innings before giving up a three-run home run in the fifth.

JONES-WESLEY NAMED BIG WEST CONFERENCE PITCHER OF THE WEEK THREE TIMES THIS SEASON, NINE TIMES DURING CAREER: Sophomore Erin Jones-Wesley has been named the Big West Conference Pitcher of the Week three times this season, running her career total to nine weekly awards. Jones-Wesley claimed back-to-back awards on Feb. 13 and Feb. 20 before winning the award for a third time on March 19. The reigning Big West Conference Pitcher of the Year claimed six weekly honors in 14 weeks last season. She heads into this weekend's series vs. Cal Poly with 12 wins and a 2.48 ERA.

NEAL LEADS LBSU IN HITTING; EIGHTH IN BIG WEST: Junior college transfer Cya Neal heads into the Cal Poly series with a team-best .337 batting average (percentage points ahead of Hannah De Gaetano). The 49er second baseman is 32-for-95 with 11 runs scored. She ranks eighth in the Big West in batting average, while sitting ninth in hits.

Neal started her Long Beach State career with a four-game hitting streak in the Las Vegas Tournament, including a pair of two-hit games in her first two games. Overall she has eight multi-hit games including a pair of three-hit games against Maine and Nevada.

DE GAETANO AND TUPUA-TAUTALATASI WIN BIG WEST PLAYER OF THE WEEK AWARDS: Sophomore Hannah De Gaetano and freshman Leilani Tupua-Tautalatasi have both been named Big West Conference Players of the Week this season.

Tupua-Taulatasi won the award after her first five career games during which she batted .368 with a home run and two RBI, while finishing with a .632 slugging percentage. She went 7-for-19 at the plate with a home run, a triple, and two RBI.

De Gaetano claimed the honor after batting .500 with two home runs and five RBI at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic in Las Vegas during the season's second weekend. The sophomore had multiple hits in three of LBSU's games in the tournament including three vs. Indiana and two against both Texas Tech and Memphis. She also had a pair of RBI against both Indiana and Ohio State.

49ERS BATTLING INJURY BUG: Long Beach State coach Kim Sowder has had to juggle her lineup for most of the season thanks to a rash of injuries to a number of LBSU starters. Four projected starters among the position players have combined to miss a number of games forcing Sowder to move players to various positions. Senior Alisha Rosen, junior Bree Stephan, and sophomores Karli Sandoval and Sarah Carrasco have all missed games in the first two months of the season. Rosen's injury has forced Sowder to move Hannah De Gaetano from left field to third base. In addition, senior pitcher Taylor Petty saw her first action of the season at UCSB after battling an illness the first two months of the season.



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