Let’s get this out of the way - there are no April Fools references here.
Oregon’s men and ladies travel to sunny Pasadena this weekend to rain on the Bruins’ little parade. However...
In softball, we again maintain that the Pac-12 has one of the best overall conferences in the nation. We shall see that on display when #3 UCLA hosts #12 Oregon. The Bruins are stiff competition, holding an overall record of 28-3 and a Pac-12 record of 6-0. In the D1 RPI rankings, UCLA is #4 while Oregon is #6. Regardless, the Bruins sit atop of the Pac-12, tied for 1st with Arizona State, with the Ducks in sole possession of the #3 position, so this is a vital series for Oregon. UCLA is on a hot streak, deserving of their position, coming off sweeps of both Washington and Arizona.
UCLA’s pitching is 1st in the Pac-12, and they have the bats to back their pitching; thus, they are riding a 21-game win streak. Duck softball fans will learn a few things or more about Oregon this weekend.
On the men’s side of the diamond, UCLA is not as stellar as their softball counterparts. A few weeks ago, they dropped their series against USC. Last weekend, however, they pulled out a series win against Arizona, followed by a mid-week victory against UC Santa Barbara, putting them currently at a 3-1 streak over the last week. Look for UCLA to have dominant starting pitching this weekend, but their bullpen does not have the depth or the punch of the Ducks. The Bruins rely on pitching more than bats, and if they can’t keep Oregon’s offense in control they’ll see games where, if that’s the case, those games might get away from them.