Early Offense Lifts Stanford To 7-0 Victory Over Minnesota
Feb. 27, 2009
Fullerton, Calif. - Freshman Jenna Becerra highlighted a six-run Stanford first inning with her first career home run, leading the Cardinal softball team to a 7-0 victory over Minnesota today at the DeMarini Invitational.
Stanford improves to 15-1 with the win, while Minnesota drops to 8-9.
Cardinal ace Missy Penna (10-1) earned her 94th career victory after striking out nine batters in her 10th complete game of the year. The Cardinal senior continued to build on the new program shutout record she established last week, blanking the Golden Gophers for her career 37th shutout.
Penna allowed just two Golden Gopher hits. The first came on bunt single by Colleen Conway that led off the game, and the second came on a single through the left side by Heidi Stemper in the seventh. Minnesota starter Briana Hassett (8-4) gave up seven runs in three innings and suffered her fourth loss of the year.
Stanford's win was its 14th in a row, dating back to the opening day of the season. The Cardinal outhit the Golden Gophers, 7-2.
Stanford's seven hits came off the bats of seven different players. Once again, Stanford's freshman led the offensive production, as Becerra and Maya Burns combined for five of the six Cardinal RBI.
Alissa Haber recorded her 21st career stolen base in the first inning, making her one of the school's 10 all-time best on the base paths. Just over halfway into her career, Haber has already etched her name on five of Stanford's career top-10 charts (doubles, triples, home runs, runs scored and stolen bases).
Stanford capitalized on Minnesota pitching woes in the opening inning to score six runs on two hits. Hassett walked the bases loaded, before Burns sent a two-RBI chopper over the second baseman's head and opened up the scoring. An error by the Golden Gopher shortstop allowed another run to come across, and Becerra followed with her first career home run, nailing a three-run bomb over the left field fence.
In the third inning, Stanford used a pair of back-to-back doubles to plate another run. Senior Maddy Coon recorded her first hit back from injury, pulling up at second base after driving a well-placed ball down the line in right field. Sophomore Melisa Koutz picked up the RBI on the next at-bat with a ground-rule double to left center field.
Stanford will be back on the field in Fullerton tomorrow, taking on Cal Poly and UC Riverside beginning at 9 a.m.