27 And Counting: Win Streak Rolls Into NCAA Record Books
March 22, 2009
Stanford, Calif. - With the start of conference play just days away, the Stanford softball team (28-1) took the nation's longest active winning streak into the NCAA record books. The team bested Pacific, 6-0, in the final game of the Stanford Invitational, and has now swept five consecutive tournaments and gone 43 days, 177 innings and 27 games without suffering a loss.
The 27-game win streak, a program record, is now one of the top-20 in NCAA history as well. It is the longest single-season run by a Pac-10 team since Arizona (31 games) and Cal (32 games) posted similar streaks early in 2001. The longest single-season winning streak in NCAA history was a 38-game run by South Carolina in 1997. Prior to this year, Stanford's longest win streak was 16 games (2002).
Junior outfielder Alissa Haber and freshman shortstop Ashley Hansen paced the Stanford offense, each going 2-for-4 with a run scored. Freshman Sarah Hassman also had two hits in the game, while senior Maddy Coon and freshman Jenna Becerra drove in two runs apiece. Stanford outhit Pacific, 9-3.
Haber recorded her 190th career hit in the game, earning herself a spot among the school's top-10 all-time hit leaders. Just a junior, the Cardinal outfielder has already etched her name on six of Stanford's career top-10 charts (hits, doubles, triples, home runs, runs scored and stolen bases).
Senior pitcher Missy Penna threw her second shutout of the weekend, increasing her ongoing school career record to 43. Penna, now 18-1 on the year, struck out 10 for the second straight game and allowed just three hits, none of which left the infield.
Haber and Hansen, Stanford's leadoff duo, once again teamed to put the Cardinal on the board early. In the second inning, Haber laid down a bunt single, stole second and came across when Hansen doubled to left center.
The Cardinal couldn't seem to capitalize on its opportunities, however, and held the 1-0 lead until the sixth inning. The squad left the bases loaded three times in the first five innings, and left a season-high 12 runners on base.
In the sixth inning, however, a few timely hits finally broke the game open. Hassman started the inning with an infield single and another short single by Hansen put two on for Coon with two out. The senior refused to strand more runners however, and slammed a two-RBI triple into the gap in right center. A walk put a second runner on, and Coon scored when Maya Burns reached on a Tiger error. After a hit batter loaded the bases, Becerra laced a two-RBI double down the left line to push the lead to 6-0.
With Coon's sixth-inning triple, the Cardinal tied the school record for triples in a single year (14). Stanford also hit 14 triples in 2005 and 2006. The triple was the fourth of Coon's career, moving her onto the school's career top-10 chart.
Stanford will play Cal Poly tomorrow in its final non-conference game before the Pac-10 season begins. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. at Smith Family Stadium.