No. 3 Softball Routs UC Riverside 13-5 In Five Innings

Feb. 14, 2002

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - No. 3 Stanford softball won its fifth straight contest Thursday afternoon, routing UC Riverside 13-5 in five innings on the road in a tuneup for this weekend's Campbell/Cartier Classic. The Cardinal will begin tournament competition tomorrow.

Stanford (5-0) erupted for eight runs in the second inning and tallied five insurance scores in the top of the fifth to preserve the victory over the Highlanders (2-7), who only managed two hits on the afternoon.

It appeared the game would be out of reach quickly, when the Cardinal scored eight runs in the top of the second to grab an 8-0 lead. With the bases loaded and one out, freshman Leah Nelson (Oakland, Calif.) roped a single off the left field wall that scored Jessica Allister (Nacagodoches, Texas) with the first run of the game. Jessica Dramel (Omaha, Neb.) then reached on the first of UC Riverside second baseman Kiara Burneleit's three errors, scoring Cassi Brangham (Clovis, Calif.) to make it 2-0. After Highlander starting pitcher Jessica Gandara walked in the third Cardinal run, senior Jessica Mendoza (Camarillo, Calif.) cleaned the bases with a grand slam- her first home run of the season- to give the Card a 7-0 advantage. Two batters later, Kira Ching (San Lorenzo, Calif.) blasted a solo home run over the left field fence to make it 8-0.

The Highlanders would chip away at the lead, answering back with three runs in the bottom of the third, highlighted by Suzanne Dallas' two-run single. UC Riverside later added two more runs in the fourth to cut the Stanford lead to 8-5, when Burneleit singled home a run and Kristen Hernandez scored on a double steal.

Two more UC Riverside errors gave the Cardinal a 10-5 edge in the top of fifth before Sarah Beeson (Tucson, Ari.) scorched her second double of the afternoon and drove in two runs to increase Stanford's lead to 12-5. Freshman Heather Shook (Whittier, Calif.) loaded the bases later in the inning with her first collegiate hit, and Beeson would come around to score on UC Riverside's fourth error of the game. Play was called after UC Riverside batted in the bottom of the fifth.

Tori Nyberg (Belmont, Calif.) ran her record to 3-0 with the win, pitching 3.2 hitless innings on the afternoon and striking out four.

The Cardinal now focuses its attention on Friday's opening game in the Campbell/Cartier Classic, which pits Stanford against No. 10 Cal State Fullerton at 6 p.m.

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