No. 1 Huskies Cap Perfect Opening Weekend With 5-0 Win
Feb. 14, 2010
TEMPE, Ariz. - The No. 1 ranked Washington softball team completed a perfect opening weekend in defense of their national championship, shutting out Notre Dame, 5-0, with a late five-inning outburst Sunday at the Kajikawa Classic.
Reigning National Player of the Year Danielle Lawrie also capped a perfect weekend for herself in the circle, throwing her third shutout in as many starts, this time allowing just one hit and striking out 13 with no walks. She opened the season Thursday with a perfect game against Auburn, threw one perfect inning of relief Friday against Ohio before her second shutout later that night. She then improved to 3-0 with the win Sunday, allowing just a single in the fourth inning to finish the weekend with 21 shutout innings, allowing just four hits and striking out 45 with just one walk.
She was equally as impressive with her bat, belting four home runs and driving in a team-high nine runs in the five games, including a solo shot on Sunday to cap the scoring. Jenn Salling gave UW and Lawrie all the runs they would need, hitting a grand slam for her second home run of the weekend as the Canadian duo carried the Huskies all weekend.
Salling hit .500 (6-for-12) in five games with two home runs and six RBI. The 2007 All-American is playing in her first full season with the Huskies after playing the second half of the 2009 campaign.
The teams were locked in a scoreless battle through four innings until the Huskies finally broke through in the bottom of the fifth inning, exploding for five runs on three hits.
Lawrie struck out the first three batters of the game - all swinging - and also struck out the side on swinging strikes in the third and fifth. UW, meanwhile, had runners on base in each of the first three innings but was unable to push across a run. The senior ace allowed a single in the top of the fourth but the runner was immediately erased when she was thrown out attempting to steal by freshman catcher Shawna Wright. Lawrie would go on to face the minimum 21 batters for the second time this weekend.
The Huskies left the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth, but would not be denied the next inning. Senior Alyson McWherter led off with a walk and sophomore Kimi Pohlman doubled to put runners on second and third with no outs. After senior Bailey Stenson reached on a fielder's choice to load the bases, Salling followed with her first grand slam as a Husky, a long shot to left-center field.
Lawrie would then add some insurance for her own cause, launching a home run to her favorite spot of the weekend - dead centerfield.
The Langley, B.C., native would end the game with her 13th strikeout, giving her 1,410 in her career, which moved her into ninth all-time in NCAA history. She came into the opening weekend 13th on the list.
Pohlman went 2-for-4 in the game and batted .421 (8-for-19) for the weekend.
UW heads down to San Diego next week to play in the Campbell Cartier Classic, Feb. 19-21. UW's first game of the weekend will take place Friday, Feb. 19 when they take on Utah State at 9 a.m.