Cardinal Win Two In Opening Day Of Stanford Invitational

Feb. 14, 2003

Stanford, Calif. - The 14th-ranked Stanford softball team cruised to two shutout victories over Penn State (6-0) and Kentucky (8-0) in the first day of the Stanford Invitational on Friday at the Boyd & Jill Smith Family Stadium. The Cardinal improve to 7-2 overall and will face Missouri tomorrow at 1:15 p.m.

Lauren Lappin (Anaheim, CA) started the game out with a hit for the Cardinal in the top of the first inning off Penn State pitcher Tina Skelly, but Stanford failed to score. The Nittany Lions threatened with back-to-back singles with two outs, but Cardinal starter Tori Nyberg (Belmont, CA) fanned Kelley Galigher to end the inning.

Stanford took a 1-0 lead when Catalina Morris (Sonoita, AZ) scored on Maureen LeCocq's (Woodland Hills, CA) double to right. Nyberg then fanned the side, preserving the lead. The Cardinal added one more run in the third. Kira Ching (San Lorenzo, CA) walked, Jessica Allister (Nacogdoches, TX) singled and Leah Nelson (Oakland, CA) reached on an error. Cassi Brangham (Clovis, CA) drew a walk from Skelly, walking in Ching and a 2-0 Stanford advantage.

The Cardinal exploded for four runs in the fourth. LeCocq singled and Heather Shook (Whittier, CA) came in to pinch run. Following a stolen base, Shook advanced to third on Katherine Hoffman's (Kansas City, MO) sacrifice bunt, and scored on Lappin's single. Ching and Allister hit back-to-back RBI doubles and Brangham finished Stanford's scoring on a sacrifice fly to left, scoring Allister.

Allister, LeCocq and Morris were 2-for-3 at the plate, while Lappin went 3-for-4. Nyberg picked up her fifth win of the season, finishing with six strikeouts and limited Penn State to just seven hits in seven innings.

In the final game of the tournament, Stanford came out and scored two runs in the top of the first against Kentucky. Lappin again started off the game with a single and scored on Ching's double. Ching advanced to third on the Wildcat throw and came home on Allister's sacrifice fly to right to hold a 2-0 advantage.

Stanford add three more in the second, led by Allister's two RBI double to left center scoring Michelle Thiry (Renton, WA) and Meghan Sickler (Houston, TX). Lappin then added the Cardinal's third run of the inning when Brangham reached on an error by the Kentucky third baseman.

The Cardinal extended their lead to 8-0 in the third inning, behind Thiry's two RBI double to left field scoring Morris and Megan Bordelon (Laguna Niguel, CA). Thiry eventually scored on an error by the Wildcat catcher.

LeCocq got the start and pitched two innings, getting her first win of the season. Laura Severson (Frankfort, IL) came in and preserved the shutout, striking out three and giving up just one hit. Sickler and Thiry led Stanford offensively, going a perfect 2-for-2 at the plate. Lappin added two more hits, finishing 4-for-7 on the day.

In the first game, Missouri defeated Penn State 3-1 and Kentucky beat the Tigers 5-4 in eight innings. Play will continue tomorrow at the Smith Family Stadium, with Penn State and Kentucky kicking things off at 11 a.m.

Game #1Penn State	000  000  1	1-5-2Missouri	100  002  x	3-3-0WP: Erin Kalka (3-1)LP: Marisa Hanson (0-1)Records: Penn State 0-1, Missouri 5-1

Game #2Missouri 000 020 11 4-8-2Kentucky 300 000 02 5-7-4WP: Becky Abner (1-3)LP: Samantha Fleeman (2-1)Records: Missouri 5-2, Kentucky (2-4)

Game #3Stanford 011 400 0 6-11-0Penn State 000 000 0 0-7-1WP: Tori Nyberg (5-0)LP: Tina Skelly (0-1)Records: Stanford 6-2, Penn State 0-2

Game #4Stanford 233 00 8-10-0Kentucky 000 00 0-3-4WP: Maureen LeCocq (1-1)LP: Becky Abner (1-4)Records: Stanford 7-2, Kentucky 2-5

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