Softball Splits Doubleheader With Stanford

April 22, 2007

PALO ALTO, Calif.-- The 11th-ranked Washington softball team split a doubleheader with 16th-ranked Stanford Sunday. The Cardinal won the opener 3-2, before the Huskies pounded 14 hits to earn the 12-1 victory in the nightcap.

Washington improves to 29-12 overall and 6-5 in the Pac-10, tying its 2006 conference wins total with the second half of the league season left to play. Stanford falls to 29-13 overall and 5-7 in the Pac-10.

Head coach Heather Tarr is now one win away from her 100th career victory. She has a 99-59 record in her third year at the hem of the Huskies.

The opening game was resumed in the third inning after rain halted the contest Saturday night. Stanford scored three unearned runs in the inning in all, plating two during Saturday's down pour and a third on a bases loaded illegal pitch on Sunday to take the 3-0 lead.

Erin Howe led off the inning, reaching base on an error and advanced to second base on a ground out to the right side. Lindsay Key then singled up the middle to score Howe and Caitlin Noble struck out Jackie Rinehart for the second out of the inning. The soggy conditions then became too much for Noble who hit Alissa Haber with a pitch and walked the next two batters to bring in a run. After Noble threw a ball to the next batter, the umpires halted the game because of the poor field conditions.

When play resumed Sunday morning, Stanford had the bases loaded and an illegal pitch call on Noble brought another run in as the Cardinal took the 3-0 lead.

Washington answered in the top of the fourth when senior Dena Tyson took Becky McCullough's first offering over the left-centerfield fence for a leadoff home run.

The Huskies continued to chip at Stanford's lead in the fifth inning with a leadoff solo home run by All-American Ashley Charters off reliever Missy Penna to cut the Cardinal lead to 3-2. It was Charter's fourth home run of the season and marked Washington's seventh game with two or more home runs.

Washington threatened in each of the last three innings but was unable to break through with the tying run. The Huskies stranded 10 base runners in all, while Stanford left five runners on base.

Noble (11-4) took the tough loss as she gave up three unearned runs on two hits and struck out seven in six innings.

McCullough (8-7) earned the win as she allowed one run on three hits in 3.2 innings with one strikeout. Penna picked up the save, her first of the year, as she held Washington to one run on one hit with two strikeouts in 3.1 innings.

The Huskies jumped out to the 2-0 lead in the first inning of the nightcap with a two-run double by Lauren Greer. Marnie Koziol sparked the inning with a walk and moved a second base on a ground out. The Cardinal elected to intentionally walk Tyson before Greer delivered her team-leading ninth double of the season off the centerfield wall to give UW the early 2-0 lead.

Washington tacked on an insurance run in the second inning with an RBI-single by Charters. Husky ace Danielle Lawrie led off the frame with a double to centerfield and advanced to third on a sacrifice by freshman designated player Bailey Stenson. Charters then laced a single through the right side of the infield to score Lawrie and put on top, 3-0.

The Huskies pushed their lead to 5-0 with a two-run third inning. Tyson initiated the rally, belting a home run, making it six straight games she has homered. Alicia Matthews kept the rally going with a two-out single through the right side and Lawrie followed with a high chopper over third base. Nicole Moojen walked to load the bases and Stenson beat out an infield single to the shortstop to score Matthews.

Stanford finally broke through in the bottom of the third with an unearned run on two hits. Tricia Aggabao led off with a single up the middle. Rinehart then hit a short pop-up in front of the circle that Lawrie slid on her knees for. She made the throw to first from her knees but threw the ball wide, allowing the runners to advance to second and third. Haber then hit a slow roller to the shortstop that allowed Aggabao to score.

Washington broke the game wide open with another home run by Tyson- this time a two-run shot over the left-centerfield fence to give UW the 7-1 lead. The blast marked Tyson's 16th home run of the season, which ties for ninth on the school's all-time single-season list. It also marked Tyson's seventh home run in the last six games.

The Huskies put the game out of reach in the sixth, scoring four runs on three hits. Matthews kicked off the rally with a single to the shortstop and she scored on a double by Lawrie to left-center. Moojen and Amanda Fleischman reached base on a single and fielder's choice and Charters belted her second home run of the day to put UW on top, 12-1.

Lawrie shut the Cardinal down in the sixth and Washington's 8+ run lead triggered the mercy-rule and ended the game.

Lawrie (18-7) picked up the win as she held Stanford to one run on five hits and struck out 10.

Penna (21-6) took the loss as she allowed five runs on six hits and struck out four in 2.2 innings.

Washington returns to Seattle for four games next week. The Huskies host UCLA on Wednesday, Oregon State on Friday and Oregon on Saturday and Sunday.

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