East Carolina Tops Cal State Fullerton 10-0

UABSPORTS.COM Sophomore Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin matched her career high with two hits against Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday night.
Sophomore Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin matched her career high with two hits against Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday night.

March 7, 2012

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FULLERTON, Calif. - A pair of unearned runs in the top of the fifth inning, an eight-run seventh and a one-hit performance by freshman pitcher Sarah Christian propelled East Carolina to a 10-0 victory over Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday night at Anderson Family Field. The victory snapped the Pirates' six-game losing streak and lifted the team's record to 8-10 while the Titans dropped to 9-13.

East Carolina sophomores Jill Jelnick, Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin and Kristi Oshiro each tallied two hits while classmate Jordan Lewis hit a grand slam to lead the offense.

Christian (6-5) tossed the first shutout of her young career and threw her second-straight complete game. She allowed just one hit, a fourth-inning single back to the circle, and two walks while striking out a career-high four batters. The Greenville product faced three batters over the minimum and retired the side in order three times. Cal State Fullerton's Desiree Ybarra (4-6) threw six-plus innings, surrendering eight runs, five earned, on nine hits and a walk. She also fanned eight. Vanessa Garcia entered for the final three outs and gave up two runs on two hits and one free pass.

Through the first two innings, each team had just one base runner, both via a walk. With two outs in the top of the third, Jelnick tallied the first hit of the contest with a single through the right side, but Ybarra recorded a strikeout to end the frame.

After Christian retired the Titans in order in the bottom of the third, the Pirates mounted the game's first scoring threat in the top of the fourth. With one out, senior Priscilla Velasquez was hit by a pitch and classmate Suzanne Riggs singled to center, putting runners on first and second. A pair of strikeouts, however, left the two stranded.

Cal State Fullerton tallied its only hit of the game in the bottom of the fourth, but an ECU double play kept the Titans off the scoreboard. Adriana Martinez led off with a single back to Christian in the circle and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Eliza Crawford. Nicole Johnson sent a hard line drive toward second baseman Oshiro, who jumped up and made the catch and threw to shortstop Kaluhiokalani-Glackin covering second to double off Martinez for the inning-ending double play.

In the top of the fifth, the Pirates used a two-out Fullerton error to take a 2-0 lead. A groundout started the frame, but Kaluhiokalani-Glackin followed with an infield single and stole second base. After a strikeout, Oshiro singled off Ybarra's glove to put runners on the corners with two down. Oshiro swiped second before sophomore Alex Fieldhouse hit a grounder to Crawford at third. Crawford had the ball roll between her legs and into left field, allowing both runners to score. Ybarra ended the inning with a fly out to center field.

The Titans mounted another scoring opportunity in the bottom of the sixth, but Christian again shut the door. Pinch hitter Morgan LeMond led off reaching on a fielding error by Kaluhiokalani-Glackin and was replaced by pinch runner Jena Rubio. A pair of groundouts moved Rubio to third base, but a third-straight groundout left Rubio on the bag.

ECU broke the game open in the top of the seventh with eight runs for the 10-0 final. Four-straight singles by Jasmine Robbins, Kaluhiokalani-Glackin, Jelnick and Oshiro provided the first run of the frame and loaded the bases with no outs. A fielder's choice by Fieldhouse plated Kaluhiokalani-Glackin as Martinez's throw home was dropped by catcher Kirsten Lambertson. A two-run double by Velasquez chased Ybarra, made it a 6-0 contest and put runners on second and third with no outs. After a walk to Riggs loaded the bases, Lewis sent her long ball over the wall in left center for the 10-0 lead. It was the Pirates' first grand slam since Marina Gusman-Brown's at Hawai'i on March 7, 2010.

After a pop out, Robbins was hit by a pitch, but was called out for runner interference on a ground ball by junior pinch hitter Cicely Lopez. Freshman Alexa Cannon stepped to the plate with two outs and singled to right center for her first career hit. A fly out to center by Oshiro ended the inning.

Christian retired the first two Titans in the seventh on a pair of groundouts before Anissa Young's second walk of the game. A groundout to first baseman Velasquez ended the contest and completed the shutout victory.

East Carolina will now head to the Diamond Devil Invitational in Tempe, Ariz., this weekend. The Pirates open the tournament Friday with a 5:30 p.m. ET contest against Pacific (10-8) before taking on the host, defending national champion, and current No. 5, Sun Devils (21-2).

Post-Game Notes
-- Sophomore Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin has tallied one or more hits in two-straight games and in three of the last five after entering the DeMarini Invitational with two hits this season.
-- Sophomore Jordan Lewis has eight runs batted in during her last five contests.
-- Freshman Sarah Christian limited Cal State Fullerton to one hit, the fewest by an opponent since Toni Paisley no-hit Southern Miss on April 2, 2011.
-- East Carolina snapped its six-game losing streak, the program's longest since a 10-game skid March 29-April 13, 2003.
-- ECU's seven hits and eight runs in the seventh inning were the most in a frame since recording seven and 10 during the fifth at Hampton on April 7, 2010.
-- The victory is the Pirates' first true road win of the campaign after dropping two games at No. 2 Alabama on Feb. 24 and 25.
-- Cal State Fullerton's Desiree Ybarra was the first left-handed pitcher to start against the Pirates this season.
-- The Titans did not hit a ball out of the infield or record a fly out or pop out during the game.
-- In the two all-time meetings against the Titans, they have totaled just two hits as Toni Paisley also one-hit Fullerton on March 13, 2010.