March 16, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.– East Carolina’s softball team (9-15, 1-0 C-USA) broke a four-game losing streak with a thrilling 4-2 victory over UAB (11-6, 3-1 C-USA) in its first conference game of the season on Saturday, March 16.
Sarah Christian (7-7) was on her game in going the distance and only allowing two runs, eight hits and a walk. She also struck out three. Lauren Webster (5-2) was tagged with the loss and allowed three runs in 4.1 innings in the circle.
Junior Kristi Oshiro had a three-hit performance with two runs to lead the offensive attack for the Pirates. Freshman Casey Alcorn had a pair of RBI on a double.
The Pirates threatened in the opening inning. Oshiro rapped a single to left and Fieldhouse worked the count for a one-out walk to put two runners on base. The next two ECU batters were retired on a strikeout and a lineout to the first baseman though to keep the game scoreless heading to the bottom of the first.
The Blazers put together a near two-out rally in the first as Whitney Fletcher tripled and Kristen McGrath walked to put runners on the corners, but Christian induced a long fly out to center to end the inning.
UAB again put two runners on base in the second. Kate Armstrong, aided by the umpire getting in the way of Oshiro as she tried cover first, singled to the first baseman with one out. Megan McGrath followed with a single up the middle to put a pair of runners on base, but Christian again got out of inning unscored upon with a fly out to center and nice defensive play from Fieldhouse at third base off a bunt attempt.
Oshiro tripled down the right field line with two outs in the third inning, but an infield pop out ended the inning for the Pirates.
The Pirates again put a two-out runner on base in the fourth inning on junior Jasmine Robbins walk, but a ground out to third ended the frame.
ECU loaded the bases and finally broke through for three runs in the fifth inning. Freshman Meredith Mitchell reached on a fielder’s choice. Junior Jill Jelnick followed with an infield single to short. Oshiro worked a walk to load the bases. Fieldhouse then ripped a single past third for the first run. The run ended a scoreless streak of 30 innings for the Pirates’ offense. The hitting was contagious as Alcorn belted a double to center to plate Jelnick and Oshiro with the next two runs and give ECU a 3-0 advantage heading to the bottom of the frame.
In the bottom of the fifth, Caitlin Attfield reached on fielder’s choice grounder, but then was thrown out at second trying to steal on strong throw from ECU catcher Kai Clark. A fly out to left ended the inning to keep the ECU lead at 3-0 heading to top of the sixth inning.
ECU added an insurance run to the lead in the seventh as Oshiro scored from third on a fielding error off the ball hit by Lewis with two outs in the inning. Oshiro reached base with her third hit of the contest to lead-off the frame, moved to second on a wild pitch and third on a ground out.
The Blazers ruined the potential shutout and cut the lead in half with two runs in the seventh inning. Chandler Orr and Kate Armstrong had back-to-back singles to start the frame. After a strikeout for the first out, pinch hitter Hayley Davis singled to right to score Orr. Davis was thrown out at second trying to advance on the play and Kelly Britt, who was pinch running for Armstrong, took third on single and then stole home as apparently time was not granted by the umpire when all the players huddled in the middle of the field. Christian kept her composure though and induced a ground out to end the game.