Regional Champs! Stanford Sweeps To Move To The Round Of 16
May 17, 2009
Stanford, Calif. - Behind another outstanding effort by senior pitcher Missy Penna, the Stanford softball team completed a sweep of its own NCAA Regional today. The Cardinal (47-9) bested No. 22-ranked and Big West Champion Cal Poly, 4-0, earning the school's sixth regional title and securing a spot in the program's fourth Super Regional in five seasons.
Penna (34-6) posted her 50th career shutout, becoming the first pitcher in school history to toss 50 or more. She struck out five in the game and allowed just three hits in seven innings of work. With her 118th career victory, she is now tied as the 16th-winningest pitcher in NCAA and matches former Arizona State pitcher Katie Burkhart as the sixt-winningest in Pac-10 history. Her 34 wins this season are second only to the school-record 37 wins she posted as a junior last year.
Sophomore Anna Cahn (28-7) took the loss for Cal Poly, going six innings and allowing all four earned runs on seven Stanford hits.
The Cardinal outpaced the Mustangs offensively, with seven hits to the three by Cal Poly. Freshman Sarah Hassman paced Stanford with two hits, including a critical RBI triple, while sophomore Melisa Koutz was also 2-for-3 with an RBI.
Junior outfielder Alissa Haber broke the school's single-season double record in the game, notching her 24th of the year in the sixth inning. Freshman teammate Ashley Hansen is close behind her, having matched the previous record last night (23).
Cal Poly got two of its three hits from senior shortstop Melissa Pura.
The Cardinal, the designated visitor in the game, took advantage of a slow start by Cahn to get the first run across. After Hansen singled, Cahn walked two and hit Shannon Koplitz with a pitch. Rosey Neill drew a full-count walk for the RBI.
Despite putting runners on in all but one inning, Stanford held the 1-0 lead for most of the game. Hassman finally ignited the Cardinal in the sixth however, and the team never looked back. Jenna Becerra was hit by pitch with one out, and Hassman came through with her first career triple on the next at bat. The rookie slapper sliced a ball to the right center field gap and gave Stanford a 2-0 cushion. Haber followed right behind her with her record-breaking double to increase the Stanford lead to 3-0.
In the seventh, back-to-back doubles by Maddy Coon and Koutz created another run and gave Penna a four-run cushion for the seventh.
The senior struck out two of the four batters she faced in the seventh and clinched the regional title.
Stanford will host conference rival Arizona in a Super Regional later this week. Dates and times will be determined by the NCAA tomorrow.