Feb. 16, 2014
GREENVILLE, N.C. – The East Carolina softball team used two home runs and four solid innings of relief from junior Caroline Umphlett to defeat Delaware State, 6-4, in its 2014 home opener Saturday evening at the ECU Softball Stadium.
The senior class led the offensive attack on the night, as Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin was 3-for-4 with a run and a stolen base, Kristi Oshiro went 2-for-2 with a solo home run and three runs and Jordan Lewis hit a three-run homer to power ECU.
Caroline Umphlett (1-1) allowed four hits, three walks and one earned run while striking out a batter over four innings of relief work in the circle to collect her first win of the season, and her first with the Pirates.
East Carolina (3-3) jumped all over the Hornets in the bottom of the first inning, applying immense pressure to their defense with a pair of singles by Kaluhiokalani-Glackin and senior Shelby Johnson. Johnson stole second base for her third heist of the season and Oshiro drew a walk to load the bases with no outs. Senior Alex Fieldhouse brought home the first run of the game on a one-out sacrifice fly that scored Kaluhiokalani-Glackin, before Lewis lined a shot over the right field wall for her first big fly of the year and the 15th of her career to give the Pirates a 4-0 advantage.
Delaware State (1-1) added one run in each of the subsequent two innings to trim ECU’s lead in half, but Oshiro’s home run to lead off the bottom of the third inning pushed the score to 5-2 in the Pirates’ favor. The long ball was Oshiro’s first of the season and fourth for her career.
East Carolina increased its edge to 6-2 on an RBI single by freshman first baseman Ali Ramirez in the bottom of the fifth, just one half-inning prior to the Hornets cutting their deficit in half by adding a run in the top of the sixth.
In a last-ditch effort, Delaware State inched closer by bringing the tying run to the plate twice in the top of the seventh, while adding one more run, but Umphlett induced a fly ball and a pair of grounders to preserve ECU’s second win in its last three games.
Oshiro and Johnson extended their hitting streaks to four games each, as Oshiro recorded her first multi-hit game of the year. The Mililani, Hawai’I native led the team in games with two or more hits with 13 last season and owns 39 such performances in her career – the most among active players.
Junior pitcher Sarah Christian started for the Pirates, tossing the first three frames and surrendering two runs (one earned), six hits and a walk while striking out one.
East Carolina will face Seton Hall and Drexel on Sunday, Feb. 16 at 2 and 4 p.m., respectively, to close out the Pirate Snow Classic at the ECU Softball Stadium. Admission to both games is free to the general public.