Late Runs Lift Softball to Victory over Minnesota; Walker Earns 500th Win
March 1, 2009
Fullerton, Calif. - Head softball coach Kirk Walker earned his 500th career win on Sunday morning in a four-run seventh inning victory over the Minnesota Golden Gophers in the final day of the CSUF DiMarini Invitational. The final score was 4-1.
Five different Oregon State batters earned the team's hits, while sophomore Erin Guzy (Beaverton, Ore.) led the team with a couple of RBI.
The first four innings of the game quickly passed with the first nine Oregon State batters retiring in order. Freshman pitcher Paige Hall (Portland, Ore.) allowed only one base runner in each of the first three.
But Minnesota struck first on a squeeze play in the bottom of the fifth on a pair of singles with catcher Shannon Stemper tallying the RBI on the unearned run. The Golden Gophers' pitcher Briana Hassett looked to have control of the game, shutting down the next six Oregon State batters.
Hall gave up one more single in the bottom of the sixth before the Beaver bats came alive with one out in the top of the seventh led by senior Paige Lowe's (Tustin, Calif.) standup double to left center on the first pitch seen. Sophomore Audrey Roderfeld (Vista, Calif.) reached on a walk before senior Stefanie Ewing (Scottsdale, Ariz.) took first after being hit by pitch to load the bases.
After Lowe was called out at home with Stemper recovering in time after a wild pitch, Guzy batted in a pair of runs on a double down the left field line. Junior Tarah Black (Portland, Ore.) picked up the next RBI on a single, advancing to second on the throw before freshman Nikki Chandler (Houston, Texas) got in on the action with a RBI single, forcing the Golden Gophers to switch pitchers.
The Beavers got another pair of runners on base in back-to-back walks, but coming back to the top of the order, Oregon State ended the inning with a three-run lead that would hold.
Hall chalked up the complete game win, her third win of the weekend, to improve to 6-3 on the season.
Hassett was charged with the loss after pitching 6.2 innings, giving up all five hits and all runs earned. She now is 10-6 on the season. Third baseman Colleen Conway went 3-for-4, scoring the lone run for Minnesota.
The Beavers improve to 10-10, while Minnesota falls to 10-11.
Oregon State heads to Hawai'i next for the Pepsi Malihini Kipa Aloha Tournament, facing Mount Saint Mary's first at 12:00 p.m. PT on Thursday.
Oregon State 4, Minnesota 1 (Mar 01, 2009 at Fullerton, Calif.)
Oregon State........ 000 000 40 - 4 5 2 (10-10)
Minnesota........... 000 010 0X - 1 7 1 (10-11)
Win-Hall, Paige(6-3) Loss-Briana Hassett(10-6) T-1:47 A-0
Weather: Sunny; 67 Degrees
Oregon State Notes - Head coach Kirk Walker earned his 500th win ...
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