Stanford Wins High-Scoring Marathon With St. John's

Feb. 29, 2008

Stanford, Calif. - Stanford had to battle, but the Cardinal softball team came up with its eighth win by eight or more runs today in its first game of the Worth Invitational. The Cardinal scored 13 runs, its second-highest tally of the season, and defeated St. John's 13-5 in seven innings. Stanford improves to 17-1 on the year, while St. John's falls to 2-12.

Stanford was led by three hits apiece by Anna Beardman, Alissa Haber and Rosey Neill. Sophomore Shannon Koplitz led the team with three RBI, and junior Maddy Coon reached on five of her six tries and recorded a school record four walks. The Cardinal combined for four doubles and four homeruns in the game.

Freshman pitcher Ashley Chinn started and finished the game, throwing 5.2 innings and giving up four hits. The Cardinal outhit the Red Storm, 14-9.

Stanford jumped on Red Storm pitcher Kat Lawrence immediately, scoring six runs in the top of the first inning. For the second straight game and the third time this year, Haber led off the game with a homerun. Her ball over the center field fence was the first of two in the game for the Cardinal center fielder.

The next batter, senior Tricia Aggabao earned a walked, and stole her fourth base of the year to move to second. Coon then singled to center field to bring Aggabao around for Stanford's second run. Senior Michelle Smith followed with a long ball of her own on the next at bat, belting her fifth homerun of the year deep to center field. Smith, who is second only to Olympic gold medalist Jessica Mendoza on Stanford's all-time chart, now has 36 career homeruns.

A Melisa Koutz walk and a double by Neill put runners at the corners for Erin Howe. Howe belted a ball to the fence, but it was caught in center field and went down as a sacrifice fly. Koutz scored on the play, and Neill scored on a double by Beardman on the next play.

The Red Storm held the Cardinal off for two innings, but with two outs in the fourth inning, Stanford struck again. Two consecutive batters earned four-pitch walks, and Koplitz stepped up and belted her second homerun of the year to center field, boosting the Cardinal lead to 9-0.

Fending off the run-rule decision, the Red Storm fought back with two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. First baseman Roxy Struble led off with a double, and catcher Brandy Reyes earned a walk to put a second runner on. Alyson Funn put down a sacrifice bunt, but Struble was safe on the throw or third to load the bases with no outs. Back-to-back sacrifice flies scored two runs, whittling the Cardinal lead to seven, 9-2.

A double by Aggabao, a walk and a hit batter quickly loaded the bases for the Cardinal, and the team grabbed its eight-run lead back on a ground out by Koutz. The Red Storm held the Cardinal off from there, however, stopping the Cardinal with the bases loaded for the second consecutive inning.

In the fifth inning, St. John's once again fought off the eight-run gap, extending the game into the sixth inning. Shauntaine Harris doubled to start the inning and scored on an ensuing double by Chelsea Durning.

Continuing the back-and-forth, Stanford took its eight-run lead back in the sixth, when Haber blasted her second homerun of the game. With one out, Haber slammed a ball over the right field fence to record her first career multi-homerun game.

St. John's reacted again, however, fending off the run-rule for good. Funn led off with a single, advanced to second on wild pitch, and scored on a single by Lisa Geer and an error by the Cardinal outfield. Running for Geer, pinch runner Melissa Pilley scored on an RBI single by Bionka King.

Stanford answered with two runs in the top of the seventh. Neill put the first runner on with a single to left, and, with two outs, Beardman singled down the left line to put another one on. Haber put a single through the right side to load the bases, and Aggabao bashed her second double of the game to right center, pushing the score to its final 13-5.

Chinn and the Cardinal defense retired the Red Storm batters in order to close out the game.

Stanford will play its second game of the Worth Invitational tonight starting at approximately 6 p.m. The Cardinal will meet the Cardinals of Louisville for the first time in program history.