Cardinal Improves to 6-1 On Day One Of Stanford Nike Invitational

Feb. 19, 2010

Illinois Box Score | UC Riverside Box Score

STANFORD, Calif. - The Stanford softball team downed its competition on Day One of the Stanford Nike Invitational at Smith Family Stadium. The Cardinal run-ruled both Illinois (8-0) and UC Riverside (9-1) in five innings, Friday. The Cardinal improves its record to 6-1 on the season, while the Illini suffered their first loss of the season, standing at 6-1, and UC Riverside drops to 2-4 overall.

Stanford totaled 24 hits in the two games, outscoring its opponents 17-1. Senior Alissa Haber led the team offensively, tallying five hits, four RBI, while scoring two runs. Sophomore Maya Burns added three hits and two RBI on the day for the Cardinal.

Junior Ashley Chinn (3-1) earned the win against the Fighting Illini, striking out three batters in her third shut out of the season. Freshman Teagan Gerhart earned the win against the Highlanders, improving her record to 3-0. The rookie struck out a season-high seven batters, while allowing just one hit and walking one.

Against the Illini, the Cardinal took a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning as Burns led off with a single to the short stop. Batting sixth, senior Rosey Neill hit a double to left center field, advancing Burns to third. Junior Melisa Koutz then singled to left field, starting the rally that scored Burns. Sophomore Sarah Hassman then singled to left field, scoring junior Autumn Albers, who was pinch running for Neill. That brought Haber to the plate, who singled to left field, recording two of her four RBI as Koutz and Hassman both crossed home plate.

Illinois held Stanford scoreless in the third, but the Cardinal came back to add three more runs in the bottom of the fourth. With the bases loaded, Haber picked up another RBI as Koutz scored on her single to the first baseman. Freshman Jenna Rich, who entered the weekend leading the team with eight hits and six RBI, singled up the middle to score two more Cardinal runs.

The game ended in the bottom of the fifth inning, as Neill led off and belted her second home run of the season. Stanford out hit Illinois 11-4 in the game as both teams recorded an error.

In game two of its double-header, the Cardinal carried over its momentum from the win over the Illini, scoring three runs in the bottom of the first. Haber led off with a double to left center, setting up sophomore Ashley Hansen. The second baseman singled to right field, scoring Haber for her first RBI of the game. With two runners on, Burns singled down the left line, scoring Hansen. For the final run of the inning, Koutz doubled to right center field to score Rich and give the Cardinal a 3-0 advantage.

Stanford added one run in the second, as Hansen hit a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Hassman. Both teams were held scoreless in the third inning.

The Cardinal took a 6-0 lead in the fourth inning as Rich got on base first with a single to the short stop. Senior Shannon Koplitz ripped a triple to right center, scoring Rich. The triple was the first extra-base hit of the season for Koplitz. Burns added another RBI as she singled to center field to bring home Koplitz.

The Highlanders got on the board in the fifth inning, scoring one run, but the Cardinal added three more in the bottom of the fifth to end the game. Freshmen Jaquilyn Edwards, Caitlin Breen and Alix Van Zandt all made their first collegiate appearances as pinch hitters in the inning. Edwards registered a single on a bunt, Breen picked up a sacrifice on a slap and Van Zandt recorded a hit to set up the Cardinal in the inning.

Stanford continues with day two of the Stanford Nike Invitational, Saturday, Feb. 20. The Cardinal host Nevada at 11:15 a.m. before taking on Sacramento State at 1:30 p.m. at Smith Family Stadium.

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