Katie Burkhart and Kaitlin Cochran Lead No. 6 Softball Over No. 11 Northwestern in Tempe Super Regional Game One

May 23, 2008

TEMPE, Ariz. - A two-run home run from Kaitlin Cochran and an outstanding two-hit complete game effort with 16 strikeouts from Katie Burkhart is all ASU needed Friday night as they took Game One of the Tempe Super Regional 3-1 over the No. 11 Northwestern Wildcats to jump ahead in the best-of-three series. The win puts ASU at an astonishing 60-5 on the season while Northwestern falls to 40-15.

 

The game proved to be another stellar pitching duel, pitting Katie Burkhart against the Northwestern sophomore ace, Lauren Delaney. Keeping it scoreless through two, the `Cats were able to capitalize on a lead-off hit by pitch to Robin Thompson who took off to steal second in the next at bat where an error allowed Thompson to advance to third. A single to left brought Thompson home and gave Northwestern the 1-0 lead.

 

The lead didn't last though as ASU stormed back in the bottom of the inning as a lead-off single up the middle from Lesley Rogers proved to be costly for Northwestern as the 2007 Batting Champion, Kaitlin Cochran pulled the count full before launching her 13th home run of the season to take the lead 2-1 after three full.

 

After that it was the Katie Burkhart show as she allowed only one other base runner the rest of the game as ASU cruised through the rest of the game with another shining moment coming in the fifth inning after a lead-off walk to Lesley Rogers was brought around after an intentional walk to Kaitlin Cochran and a double steal to put Rogers on third where she was brought home by a sacrifice fly from Krista Donnenwirth to push the score to 3-1. The RBI also gives Donnenwirth 67 on the season, which ties her for the ASU Single-Season record which Bianca Cruz set in 2007.

 

On the win Clint Myers expressed post-game about the team and their performance stating, 'It is the best team we have had without a doubt. The incoming freshmen have done a great job. The other ladies are a year older and are more mature.' He also commented on Katie Burkhart and Kaitlin Cochran's performance, saying ''You always have a great chance to do well when Katie is in the circle. She is a tremendous competitor and a tremendous pitcher. We know going in what we have. Kaitlin Cochran had a big at-bat and she has had big at-bats for three years.'

 

The win puts ASU one win closer to their third consecutive Women's College World Series. They'll face Northwestern again tomorrow in Game Two at 1 p.m. in Tempe at Farrington. Should Northwestern win Game Two, they'll force a deciding Game Three at 3 p.m. following.

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