Softball Hits Past USF For 5-1 Win
Feb. 13, 2010
CLEARWATER, Fla. – The East Carolina softball team used a 12-hit attack to defeat USF 5-1 Saturday night. Every Pirate starter but one had a hit in the game and four tallied two base knocks. The victory evened ECU’s record at 1-1 and dropped the Bulls to 1-1.
The triumph also gave 14th-year Pirate head coach Tracey Kee her 575th win as the leader of the ECU program.
Junior pitcher Toni Paisley picked up right where she left off in 2009, recording the victory after allowing one run on just two hits, both coming in the fourth inning. She also struck out six in her season debut.
Senior left fielder Marina Gusman-Brown continued her hot start to the season, collecting two hits, three stolen bases and a run scored. She became the first Pirate player to steal three bases in a contest since Krista Jessup swiped a trio against Delaware March 14, 2006. Gusman-Brown finished the day’s two games going a combined 4-6 with three stolen bases, two runs scored and two driven in.
The Pirates struck in the bottom of the first inning for a 1-0 lead. Senior Charina Sumner worked a nine-pitch leadoff walk, classmate Christina Merrida laid down a sacrifice bunt and senior Vanessa Moreno doubled off the base of the wall in left center to drive in Sumner. Gusman-Brown drove a single to right field and advanced Moreno to third base. Back-to-back strikeouts, however, ended the ECU threat.
In the second inning the Pirates tacked on another run for a 2-0 advantage. Freshman Cicely Lopez singled to left field for her first career hit; senior Kaui Tom followed with a blooper into right field. Sumner sent the third pitch she saw over the right fielder’s head to drive in Lopez.
East Carolina broke the game open in the third frame with three runs. Gusman-Brown led off with a walk, stole second, advanced to third on a single to left field by junior Sissy Jimenez and scored on a single to right by freshman Kai Clark. Lopez then sent a double to right center, driving in Jimenez and Clark for a 5-0 score.
USF recorded its first base runner in the top of the fourth when Janine Richardson led off with a triple to right center. After Paisley recorded two outs, Alison Savarese came through for the Bulls with a single to center field to make it a 5-1 ECU advantage.
Neither team had another scoring opportunity until the bottom of the sixth when Merrida beat out a grounder to the shortstop and Moreno reached on a dropped fly ball by the left fielder. Two strikeouts put an end to the inning.
The Bulls tried to rally in the top of the seventh as JoJo Medina led off with a walk. After a 12-pitch battle, Savarese struck out swinging for the first out. Paisley then recorded another strikeout and a pop out to seal the victory.
Tomorrow, the Pirates complete the USF Wilson-DeMarini Tournament against No. 13 Georgia Tech at 9 a.m. and Long Island at 11 a.m.