#15 Softball Kicks Off Pac-10 Play With 2-0 Upset Of #3 California
March 30, 2001
BERKELEY, Calif. - Behind the pitching performance of freshman Tia Bollinger (Santa Ana, Calif.) and a pair of solo home runs, the 15th-ranked Washington softball team opened Pac-10 Conference play with a 2-0 upset of third-ranked California Friday at Levine-Fricke Field. With the win, the Huskies moved to 23-11 overall and 1-0 in the Pac-10, while the Golden Bears suffered just their second loss of the season to fall to 39-2 and 0-1 in conference play.
The Huskies got the game-winner in the first inning when senior Kelly Hauxhurst (Westminster, Calif.) hit her third home run of the season, a solo shot to right-center field with one out. UW junior Becky Simpson (Tumwater, Wash.) then added another run, slapping a 2-1 pitch over the fence in right field to lead-off the third inning.
The Golden Bears' first threat came in the fifth inning, until a double play by UW second baseman Christie Rosenblad (Fillmore, Calif.) on a line-drive from designated hitter Jen Deering ended the inning. California got two more base runners aboard with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but a lunging grab by Bollinger on a pop-up by right-fielder Mikella Pedretti ended the game.
The two Washington runs proved to be enough for Bollinger, who moved to 21-2 on the season. Bollinger and the Husky defense kept California off the base-paths in four of the six innings, shutting out the Golden Bears for just the second time this season. Bollinger also set a school record for wins in a season by a true freshman pitcher with 21.
California pitcher Jocelyn Forest fell to 20-2 on the season, despite striking out 12 Husky batters.
The Huskies continue Pac-10 play Saturday and Sunday with single games at fifth-ranked Stanford. Saturday's game kicks off at 2p.m., while Sunday's is slated for a 1 p.m. start.