Bruin Softball Wins Marathon Game Over Washington

April 13, 2001

LOS ANGELES - The top-ranked UCLA softball team won a four-hour, eight-minute, 14-inning struggle against Washington on Friday afternoon at Easton Stadium. With the win, the Bruins improve to 41-3 (4-3 Pac-10), while the Huskies fall to 24-18 (3-4 Pac-10) with the loss.

Friday's contest was the longest game by innings for the UCLA softball team since a 2-0 loss to Arizona on May 23, 1997 at the Women's College World Series. UCLA also played a 14-inning game against Creighton in the 1984 season, a 1-0 win.

The Bruins opened the scoring on Friday in the third inning. Centerfielder Amanda Freed led off the inning with her second walk of the game, and stole second base. Natasha Watley followed with a bloop double to short left field, advancing Freed to third. Next to the plate was Bruin third baseman Tairia Mims, who delivered with her team-leading 13th home run of the season, clearing the bullpen fence in right field.

Washington responded in the top of the fourth inning, leading off with back-to-back singles by left fielder Kelly Hauxhurst and first baseman Jaime Clark. After shortstop Amanda Oleson struck out, Christie Rosenblad drew one of the three walks that Bruin pitcher Keira Goerl issued on the afternoon, loading the bases before Kim DePaul responded with a two-RBI double. Rosenblad and DePaul were then hit home by catcher Amy Hanson, who singled to centerfield before being thrown out at second base for the third and final out of the inning.

In the bottom half of the inning, the Bruins led off with a single by second baseman Crissy Buck, who was then replaced by pinch-runner Amanda Simpson. Simpson advanced to seond on a sacrifice bunt by Lupe Brambila, who was safe at first base after the bunt was mis-handled by DePaul. With two on and nobody out, Freed put down the first of her two sacrifice bunts on the day to advance both runners into scoring position. A single by Watley brought Simpson home for the tying run of the ballgame.

The score would remain tied at 4-4 for 10 more innings. The Huskies threatened in the seventh inning, gaining runners at first and second with one out before Hauxhurst and Clark both hit ground balls to Mims, who stepped on the bag at third for the fielders choice outs to end the inning.

Washington again threatened in the ninth, as pinch hitter Shawna Norris hit a one-out single, was wild pitched to second and advanced to third on a two-out error by Mims. Mims redeemed herself when the next batter, Hauxhurst, grounded out to Mims.

Neither team put a ball into the outfield between the last out of the fifth inning and the first out of the 13th. After Clark flied out to Bruin left fielder Erin Rahn to open the top of the 13th, Oleson followed with a single up the middle, but was then doubled off in an unusual play when Rosenblad flied out to Rahn, who started a 7-4-9-4 double play to end the inning.

A one-out single up the middle for Brambila gave UCLA some life in the 13th, but she would not advance past second base. The top of the 14th saw DePaul lead off with a walk for the Huskies. She was wild pitched to second, but Goerl fought back to earn a fly-out to Rahn, her 14th strikeout of the game and a pop-out to first baseman Claire Sua to end the threat.

Mims led off the bottom of the 14th with a double down the right field line, and was replaced by pinch runner Stephanie Swenson at second base. After the second intentional walk of the day to Bruin catcher Stacey Nuveman, head coach Sue Enquist sent Stephanie Ramos into the game to pinch-run, the 17th player the Bruins would use in the ballgame. Courtney Dale was next up for UCLA, and she loaded the bases with a single.

That brought Sua to the plate with no outs, and she came through with the game-winning RBI, smacking a ground ball through the left side of the Husky infield for a game-ending single.

UCLA returns to action on Saturday afternoon with a 2 pm first pitch against Washington. The game will be broadcast live on with Lou Riggs and Nicole Odom calling the action.

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