Stanford Downs Texas A&M Corpus Christi In Season Opener
Feb. 11, 2010
HONOLULU, Hawai'i - The Stanford softball team (1-0) opened the 2010 season with a 10-2 victory over Texas A&M Corpus Christi in five innings. Freshman Jenna Rich hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the fifth inning to seal the win for the Cardinal.
Stanford outhit Texas A&M-CC 14-3, while taking advantage of three miscues by the Islanders. All nine starters tallied at least one hit in the game, as Rich and senior catcher Rosey Neill paced the Cardinal with three hits and two RBI apiece. Senior Shannon Koplitz led the team with three RBI in three at-bats.
Junior pitcher Ashley Chinn (1-0) got the start for Stanford and struck out six batters in three innings of work. The Islanders' Addie Tallman took the loss, giving up six earned runs and eight overall.
After Texas A&M-CC singled to start the game, Chinn retired the next three Islanders to close out the top of the first inning. Then, the Stanford bats went to work. Sophomore All-American Ashley Hansen, hitting in the number two slot, hit a single up the middle. She was followed by Rich, who got to first on a bunt and then advanced to second on a throwing error by Tallman. Hitting in the clean up spot, Koplitz recorded two of her RBI with a single to right field, scoring both Hansen and Rich.
Still in the bottom of the first, designated player Melisa Koutz registered a sacrifice bunt and reached first on a throwing error by the third baseman. Neill then stepped up to the plate, hitting a single to left field which scored Koplitz to give the Cardinal a 3-0 lead. The Islanders then committed their third error of the inning as sophomore Maya Burns reached first on a throwing error by the catcher, scoring Koutz. Stanford led 4-0 after one.
Chinn struck out two more batters in the top of the second inning as the Cardinal held the Islanders scoreless after two. Senior Alissa Haber got her bat going in the second inning, hitting a single to center field to lead off the inning at the top of the line-up. Hansen then reached on a fielder's choice and Rich recorded her second hit with a single up the middle. Koutz singled through the right side to score Hansen and then Neill singled to the short stop to bring home Rich. In total, Stanford scored two runs on four hits in the bottom of the second inning.
Chinn once again held Texas A&M-CC scoreless in the top of the third, giving Stanford plenty of breathing room. Sophomore Jenna Becerra led off in the bottom of the third with a single to the short stop. Sophomore Sarah Hassman mimicked Becerra with a single of her own to put two on base for the Cardinal.
After a pitching change by the Islanders, Haber drew a walk to load the bases. Hansen then hit a sacrifice fly to center field to bring home Becerra. At the next at-bat, Rich was hit by a pitch to load the bases once again. Koplitz then grounded out to the short stop, but earned the RBI as Hassman scored. Stanford led 8-0 after three.
Freshman pitcher Teagan Gerhart earned her first collegiate appearance in the top of the fourth inning. She held the Islanders to one hit and two runs, while striking out two batters in two innings in her debut.
Stanford's final runs came in the bottom of the fifth inning as Haber doubled to right center to lead off for the Cardinal. After Hansen flied out to center field, Rich hit her first career home run to end the game with a 10-2 run-rule victory.
Stanford continues play at the Paradise Classic Friday at Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium. The Cardinal will face McNeese State at 3 p.m. HT before taking on host Hawai'i at 7 p.m. HT.