Feb. 21, 2014
KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The East Carolina softball team used an early 7-0 lead and survived six unanswered runs by Albany to hold on for a 7-6 victory Friday evening at the Diamond 9 Citrus Classic at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports.
Sarah Christian (4-1) pitched five shutout innings two get the win, and allowed just two hits and one walk while striking out four. Kristi Oshiro went 2-for-2 with a run and two RBI, while Alex Fieldhouse hit her first-career grand slam.
East Carolina’s (6-3) first five batters pounced on the Great Danes in the bottom of the first inning, as senior Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin led off with an infield single to the right side, before advancing to third on a passed ball. Classmate Shelby Johnson drew a walk and stole second base, forcing an errant throw by the opposing catcher into centerfield to score Kaluhiokalani-Glackin and give the Pirates a 1-0 lead.
Senior Kristi Oshiro and redshirt junior Abby Wynne followed with walks to load the bases before senior Alex Fieldhouse crushed her first-career grand slam over the left centerfield fence to put ECU up, 5-0. The home run was Fieldhouse’s third of the season.
The Pirate bats went quietly in the next two innings, as Christian continued to retire Albany hitters, but East Carolina increased its lead to 7-0 in the bottom of the fourth, when Oshiro ripped a two-out, two-run triple to straightaway center.
The three-base hit was the 11th of Oshiro’s career and moved her into a three-way tie with Michelle Ward (1991-94) and Laura Crowder (1989-92) for eighth place on the all-time list.
Albany (1-1) scored four runs in the top of the fifth inning – three of which came on a three-run double – after ECU turned the game over to its bullpen.
The Great Danes inched closer and brought score within one run at 7-6 on a two-run home run with no outs in the top of the seventh. Christian re-entered the game for East Carolina